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
Painter, P. R. 2000. “Rivers, Blood and Transportation Networks.” Nature 408 (6809): 159; discussion 160.
A journal article with 2 authors
Pascual-Leone, A., and V. Walsh. 2001. “Fast Backprojections from the Motion to the Primary Visual Area Necessary for Visual Awareness.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 292 (5516): 510–512.
A journal article with 3 authors
LaDeau, Shannon L., A. Marm Kilpatrick, and Peter P. Marra. 2007. “West Nile Virus Emergence and Large-Scale Declines of North American Bird Populations.” Nature 447 (7145): 710–713.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Bieling, Peter, Liedewij Laan, Henry Schek, E. Laura Munteanu, Linda Sandblad, Marileen Dogterom, Damian Brunner, and Thomas Surrey. 2007. “Reconstitution of a Microtubule Plus-End Tracking System in Vitro.” Nature 450 (7172): 1100–1105.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Minns, Peter, and Ian Elliott. 2008. FSM-Based Digital Design Using Verilog HDL. Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
An edited book
Kaltschmitt, Martin, Nickolas J. Themelis, Lucien Y. Bronicki, Lennart Söder, and Luis A. Vega, eds. 2013. Renewable Energy Systems. New York, NY: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Pearson, Greg. 2016. “Characteristics of Pre-College Engineering Education in the United States.” In Pre-University Engineering Education, edited by Marc J. de Vries, Lena Gumaelius, and Inga-Britt Skogh, 65–79. Rotterdam: SensePublishers.

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
Andrew, Elise. 2015. “Mass Inhalation Of Laughing Gas In London To Protest Crack Down On Legal Highs.” 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. 2005. Social Security Administration: Additional Actions Needed in Ongoing Efforts to Improve 800-Number Service. GAO-05-735. 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
LeBlanc, Desiree C. 2008. “The Relationship between Information Technology Project Manager Personality Type and Project Success.” Doctoral dissertation, Phoenix, AZ: University of Phoenix.

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
Powell, Michael. 2017. “Always A ‘Shadow’ To Beat.” New York Times, June 19.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Painter 2000).
This sentence cites two references (Painter 2000; Pascual-Leone and Walsh 2001).

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

  • Two authors: (Pascual-Leone and Walsh 2001)
  • Three authors: (LaDeau, Kilpatrick, and Marra 2007)
  • 4 or more authors: (Bieling et al. 2007)

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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