How to cite an edited book in MLA

MLA edited book citation

To cite an edited book in a reference entry in MLA style 8th edition include the following elements:

  1. Editor(s) name: Give the last name and name as presented in the source (e. g. Watson, John). For two editors, reverse only the first name, followed by ‘and’ and the second name in normal order (e. g. Watson, John, and John Watson). For three or more editors, list the first name followed by et al. (e. g. Watson, John, et al.)
  2. Title of the book: Titles are italicized when independent. If part of a larger source add quotation marks and do not italize.
  3. Publisher: Always use the abbreviated version, e.g: MIT P for MIT Press or Oxford UP for Oxford University Press.
  4. Year of publication: Give the year of publication as presented in the source.

Here is the basic format for a reference list entry of an edited book in MLA style 8th edition:

Editor(s) name, editor. Title of the book. Publisher, Year of publication.

Take a look at our works cited examples that demonstrate the MLA style guidelines in action:


Book with one editor.

Miller, sj, editor. Teaching, Affirming, and Recognizing Trans and Gender Creative Youth: A Queer Literacy Framework. Palgrave Macmillan UK, 2016.

Book with more than two editors.

Rezzolla, Luciano, et al., editors. The Physics and Astrophysics of Neutron Stars. Springer, 2018.

Note: After two editors you include only the first followed by et al.

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