Title of Container,

Some sources, like journal article or pages from websites, are part of larger works. These larger works are referred to as containers in the MLA citation style.

  • Only include the title of the container if your source is a part of a larger whole. Sources that stand on their own (like books or films) do not have containers.
  • The title of the container is in italics with the major words capitalized and is followed by a comma.


The examples found in the MLA section are based on the manual MLA Handbook, 9th ed., 2021.

  • Your source is an article published in a journal: The title of the container = the title of the journal.
  • Your source is a web page found on a website: The title of the container = the title of the website.
  • Your source is an essay from a book: The title of the container = the title of the book.

Many sources are considered to stand on their own because they are not part of a larger work (e.g. book, film, or play). Those sources are self-contained and do not have container titles.

Multiple Containers

Your source may be in a container that is itself enclosed by a larger container (which we call container 2).


  • An article from a journal (container 1) that is located in a database (container 2).

To, Teresa, et al. “Child Care Arrangement and Preschool Development.” Canadian Journal of Public Health, vol. 91, no. 6, Nov./Dec. 2000, pp. 418-422. Research Library, proquest-crc.proxy.ccsr.qc.ca/docview/232013252?accountid=44391.

  • A book (source which is self-contained) that is located in a database of eBooks (container 2).

Decker, Peter R. Old Fences, New Neighbors. Fulcrum, 2006. Ebook Central, ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/champlaincollege-ebooks/detail.action?docID=478518.

  • An episode from a television series (container 1) that is located on a website (container 2).

“The Winds of Winter.” Game of Thrones, directed by Miguel Sapochnik, season 6, episode 10, HBO, 2016. HBO Canada, www.hbocanada.com/online.