MHRA Style Citation Demonstration

According to the MHRA Style Guide, this item should be cited in a bibliography as follows:

Gurr, Andrew (ed.), Literature in the Modern Media: Radio, Film, and Television Special Number (= Yearbook of English Studies, 20.1 (1990))

This is how standard MHRA style would look. Some of its book series (notably Legenda) allow an alternative citation system called 'author-date', but please talk to your editor before using it. (To see the demonstration for author-date, follow this link.)

Let's take this bibliography entry one step at a time:

Step 1. The entry begins with the author(s) or editor(s) of the volume, with the first name inverted into Surname, Forename. This is because a Bibliography is a list in surname order, so we need a surname up front.

Gurr, Andrew

Step 2. If somebody has a role other than that of author, it goes next, in brackets. One editor becomes '(ed.)', two or more '(eds)'. (Remember: 'ed.' stands for 'editor', not 'edited', so the full stop must be used, because 'd' is not its last letter.)

Gurr, Andrew (ed.)

Step 3. Now a comma, not a full stop:

Gurr, Andrew (ed.),

Step 4. This is a themed and titled journal issue, so we give that title here, just as if it were a book.

Gurr, Andrew (ed.), Literature in the Modern Media: Radio, Film, and Television Special Number

Step 5. We gave this a title as if it were a book, but we need to give the equivalent journal citation as well: note the '=' sign.

Gurr, Andrew (ed.), Literature in the Modern Media: Radio, Film, and Television Special Number (= Yearbook of English Studies, 20.1 (1990))

And that's the finished bibliography entry. Note that there's no final full stop.

So how about citations in footnotes or endnotes?

In standard MHRA style, the first time the work is cited in a note, it should be cited in full. This looks very like a Bibliography entry, but:

  • The author's name doesn't always come first: only for monographs. For collections and editions, the title comes first.
  • Even if the author's name does come first, it's back to being the right way round, so it's Forename Surname, not Surname, Forename;
  • Unlike Bibliography entries, notes are punctuated as sentences, and usually end in full stops.

Suppose we want to cite a passage on pages 24 to 27:

34 See Literature in the Modern Media: Radio, Film, and Television Special Number, ed. by Andrew Gurr (= Yearbook of English Studies, 20.1 (1990)), pp. 24-27.

But in any subsequent notes, a heavily abbreviated form is used:

37 Compare Gurr, p. 17.