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
Alberts, Bruce. 2004. “A Wake-up Call.” Nature 431 (7012): 1041.
A journal article with 2 authors
Moreira, David, and Purificación López-García. 2005. “Comment on ‘The 1.2-Megabase Genome Sequence of Mimivirus.’” Science (New York, N.Y.) 308 (5725): 1114; author reply 1114.
A journal article with 3 authors
Bloxham, Jeremy, Stephen Zatman, and Mathieu Dumberry. 2002. “The Origin of Geomagnetic Jerks.” Nature 420 (6911): 65–68.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Sobolev, Alexander V., Albrecht W. Hofmann, Stephan V. Sobolev, and Igor K. Nikogosian. 2005. “An Olivine-Free Mantle Source of Hawaiian Shield Basalts.” Nature 434 (7033): 590–597.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Dmytryk, Rebecca. 2011. Wildlife Search and Rescue. Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
An edited book
Kan, J. Herman. 2007. Pediatric and Adolescent Musculoskeletal MRI: A Case-Based Approach. Edited by Paul K. Kleinman. New York, NY: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Antoldi, Fabio, Daniele Cerrato, and Donatella Depperu. 2011. “Empirical Analysis of Nine Export Consortia of SMEs in Morocco, Tunisia, Peru and Uruguay.” In Export Consortia in Developing Countries: Successful Management of Cooperation Among SMEs, edited by Daniele Cerrato and Donatella Depperu, 59–77. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.

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
Luntz, Stephen. 2014. “Advertising’s Gone To The Moon.” 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. 1985. Legislative Developments. 126478. 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
Qian, Jiang. 2006. “Characterization of Transcription-Independent APC Tumor Suppressor Function in Apoptosis.” Doctoral dissertation, Cincinnati, OH: University of Cincinnati.

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
Shpigel, Ben. 2016. “Return of Jets’ Decker Is Clouded by Injury.” New York Times, September 30.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Alberts 2004).
This sentence cites two references (Alberts 2004; Moreira and López-García 2005).

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

  • Two authors: (Moreira and López-García 2005)
  • Three authors: (Bloxham, Zatman, and Dumberry 2002)
  • 4 or more authors: (Sobolev et al. 2005)

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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