How to format your references using the Critical African Studies citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Critical African Studies. For a complete guide how to prepare your manuscript refer to the journal's instructions to authors.

Using reference management software

Typically you don't format your citations and bibliography by hand. The easiest way is to use a reference manager:

PaperpileThe citation style is built in and you can choose it in Settings > Citation Style or Paperpile > Citation Style in Google Docs.
EndNoteFind the style here: output styles overview
Mendeley, Zotero, Papers, and othersThe style is either built in or you can download a CSL file that is supported by most references management programs.
BibTeXBibTeX syles are usually part of a LaTeX template. Check the instructions to authors if the publisher offers a LaTeX template for this journal.

Journal articles

Those examples are references to articles in scholarly journals and how they are supposed to appear in your bibliography.

Not all journals organize their published articles in volumes and issues, so these fields are optional. Some electronic journals do not provide a page range, but instead list an article identifier. In a case like this it's safe to use the article identifier instead of the page range.

A journal article with 1 author
Smaglik, Paul. 2002. “Small World, Big Opportunities.” Nature 418 (6899): 4–6.
A journal article with 2 authors
Kondo, Shigeru, and Takashi Miura. 2010. “Reaction-Diffusion Model as a Framework for Understanding Biological Pattern Formation.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 329 (5999): 1616–1620.
A journal article with 3 authors
Koedinger, Kenneth R., Julie L. Booth, and David Klahr. 2013. “Education Research. Instructional Complexity and the Science to Constrain It.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 342 (6161): 935–937.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Lee, Chin-Fa, David A. Leigh, Robin G. Pritchard, David Schultz, Simon J. Teat, Grigore A. Timco, and Richard E. P. Winpenny. 2009. “Hybrid Organic-Inorganic Rotaxanes and Molecular Shuttles.” Nature 458 (7236): 314–318.

Books and book chapters

Here are examples of references for authored and edited books as well as book chapters.

An authored book
Parker, Jeffrey S., and Rodney L. Anderson. 2014. Low-Energy Lunar Trajectory Design. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Sirgy, M. Joseph, Rhonda Phillips, and D. Rahtz, eds. 2011. Community Quality-of-Life Indicators: Best Cases V. Vol. 3. Community Quality-of-Life Indicators, Best Cases. Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands.
A chapter in an edited book
Sierksma, Gerard, and Diptesh Ghosh. 2010. “Minimum Spanning Trees.” In Networks in Action: Text and Computer Exercises in Network Optimization, edited by Diptesh Ghosh, 37–60. International Series in Operations Research & Management Science. Boston, MA: Springer US.

Web sites

Sometimes references to web sites should appear directly in the text rather than in the bibliography. Refer to the Instructions to authors for Critical African Studies.

Blog post
Hamilton, Kristy. 2015. “10 Things You Didn’t Know About Penises.” IFLScience. IFLScience.


This example shows the general structure used for government reports, technical reports, and scientific reports. If you can't locate the report number then it might be better to cite the report as a book. For reports it is usually not individual people that are credited as authors, but a governmental department or agency like "U. S. Food and Drug Administration" or "National Cancer Institute".

Government report
Government Accountability Office. 1996. Blue Cross FEHBP Pharmacy Benefits. HEHS-96-182R. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office.

Theses and dissertations

Theses including Ph.D. dissertations, Master's theses or Bachelor theses follow the basic format outlined below.

Doctoral dissertation
Baghaei Lakeh, Arash. 2013. “Approximate Analytical Solutions of a Generalized van Der Pol Oscillator.” Doctoral dissertation, Edwardsville, IL: Southern Illinois University.

News paper articles

Unlike scholarly journals, news papers do not usually have a volume and issue number. Instead, the full date and page number is required for a correct reference.

New York Times article
Halbfinger, David M., and Ben Hubbard. 2017. “Airstrikes on Syrian Sites Renew Focus on Chemical Arms.” New York Times, September 7.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by name and year in parentheses:

This sentence cites one reference (Smaglik 2002).
This sentence cites two references (Smaglik 2002; Kondo and Miura 2010).

Here are examples of in-text citations with multiple authors:

  • Two authors: (Kondo and Miura 2010)
  • Three authors: (Koedinger, Booth, and Klahr 2013)
  • 4 or more authors: (Lee et al. 2009)

About the journal

Full journal titleCritical African Studies
AbbreviationCrit. Afr. Stud.
ISSN (print)2168-1392
ISSN (online)2040-7211
ScopeGeneral Arts and Humanities
General Social Sciences

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