- 出版社: Modern Language Association of America; 8th Revised edition (2016年3月30日)
- 丛书名: Mla Handbook for Writers of Research Ppapers
- 平装: 145页
- 语种： 英语
- ISBN: 1603292624
- 条形码: 9781603292627
- 商品尺寸: 14.6 x 1.9 x 22.2 cm
- 商品重量: 249 g
- ASIN: 1603292624
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MLA Handbook (英语) 平装 – 2016年3月30日
Rethinking Documentation for the Digital Age
Founded in 1883, the Modern Language Association of America provides opportunities for its members to share their scholarly findings and teaching experiences with colleagues and to discuss trends in the academy. MLA members host an annual convention and other meetings, work with related organizations, and sustain one of the finest publishing programs in the humanities. For more than a century, members have worked to strengthen the study and teaching of language and literature.
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Let’s start with the good news.
1. MLA hasn’t touched in-text citation. Thank God for small favors. In parentheses Author-page number, no comma in between.
2. The odious, tack-on descriptors from 7th edition, Print-Film-Web, have vanished. Good riddance!
Now, for the bad news. It’s all about the Works Cited.
1. There is a proliferation of commas that have to be seen to be believed. Commas are appearing in places whence they were banished 25 years ago or more! A comma now must appear after a journal, for example. Why do this?
2. Out of the blue, “vol.” and “no.” and “pp.” are baa-aa-ck in 8th edition. WHY? I fought the changeover when they were erased in 3rd edition (?) years ago. Then, I came to love the efficiency of using 3.2 instead of vol. 3 no. 2. Why are we going backwards?
3. Why use commas to set off the date? What was wrong with parentheses?
4. While we’re on the subject, did I somehow miss expressing the date day-month-year in an earlier edition? It looks cool; I just didn’t know it was required.
1. MLA has declared the place of publication irrelevant. The logic of this decision escapes me. I want to know where a source is published. There’s a note to say if you absolutely must, you can include it. Somehow it feels condescending.
2. Previously understood abbreviations such as “Ed.”, “Trans.”, “Dir.” etc. now have to be spelled out!! “Edited by”, “Translated by”, “Directed by”. WHY?
3. Ah, BUT university presses still have to be expressed: U of California P, Cambridge UP. This was one of MLA’s dumbest moves in an earlier edition because some presses, like Indiana University Press, won’t accept a manuscript that uses these abbreviations. But this rule MLA decided to keep in the 8th edition!
When the MLA revolutionized citation by eliminating “Op.cit” and “Ibid.” and virtually banished footnotes in favoring the creation of a list of “Works Cited” at the end, I thought it was a stroke of genius. Those bloated “Bibliographies” and vague “References” were shown to be what they were: padding and/or slipshod scholarship. “Works Cited” meant you had to account for every single work on the list.
In teaching graduate students about the importance of correct citation, I felt confident in teaching from the MLA Handbook. How can I teach from the 8th edition with a straight face?
MLA Executive Director Rosemary Feal even ends her introduction by saying there will be “future iterations.” God help us all.
I’m ready to bail for Turabian, Chicago, or the EPA.
While the entries in the new edition are simplified for the most part, the book itself is terrible. The approach for the container system of nine "core elements" is ridiculous. The core elements as presented follow: Author, Title of source, Title of container, Other contributors, Version, Number, Publisher, Publication date, Location. Title and author are clear, but the other elements? "Container"? "Location"? What these actually mean varies widely. "Publisher," by the way, does not always mean what we think of as a publisher, nor do the other terms always make sense as applied. The writers just wanted nine elements for everything, darn it, and didn't picture anything as basic as making sense to actual college students.
I've taught for over twenty years, and grasping the basic concepts of MLA format is very difficult for some students. I have students who can't seem to understand the difference between italics and quotation marks at the end of a semester. Now I am supposed to try to get them to understand these nine badly-named "core elements" and how they apply? This book is just insane. "Location" can be any number of things, including page numbers. (Not exactly intuitively-named.) And some changes are just plain arbitrary, such as deciding to require "vol." and "no." for volumes and numbers, instead of the simpler approach used for years: we used to put 62.3, for example, instead of vol. 63, no. 3.
This book does not list an author. It is a committee-generated work by people who obviously did not work well together. And the index is the least helpful index I've ever struggled through. Buy it, figure it out for yourself, but DO NOT ask your students to buy it. They'll drop out of college.
In addition, there is a lot of missing information in the book, so we're left without guidance. For example, what do we do for website citations with no date of update or modification? I can't find this information anywhere. This is the sort of omission that will drive students insane. Similarly, URLs and date of access of websites are optional Works Cited citation elements, but there are no examples of website article citations that lack URLs. How freaking hard would it be to include one just so we can look at it and be sure we're doing it right?
Furthermore, as other reviewers have noted, the index is pathetic. Pretty much nearly useless.