Quotations used should be in the language of the essay, e.g., English. If the quote is originally in a different language, e.g., German, the original quote can be provided in an explanatory footnote or in an appendix (neither of which is included in the essay’s word count).
Translations provided in English may be stated as indirect speech (no quotation marks necessary) as they are not the actual words used, but are the writer’s own translation. The fact that all translations, unless otherwise acknowledged, are those of the essay’s author may be noted somewhere (e.g., in a footnote or at the beginning of the essay). If the translation is the work of someone else, then that person’s name must be acknowledged.
Sources in a bibliography should be provided in the language and alphabet of the original, either preceded or followed by a translation and/or transliteration in square brackets, if necessary. Note that for in-text citations, the citation is a finding device, so the in-text citation must match the first word or name in the Works Cited or Reference List.
Possible ways to do it in MLA 8 – but try to be consistent within one bibliography.
Abe, Yoshio 阿部善雄, and Hideo Kaneko 金子英生. Saigo no “Nihonjin” : Asakawa Kan’Ichi no shōgai 最後の「日本人」 : 朝河貫一の生涯 [The last ‘Japanese’: Life of Kan’ichi Asakawa]. Tōkyō: Iwanami Shoten, 1983.
Hao, Chunwen 郝春文. Tang houqi wudai Songchu Dunhuang sengni de shehui shenghuo 唐后期五代宋初敦煌僧尼的社会生活 [The social existence of monks and nuns in Dunhuang during the late Tang, Five Dynasties and early Song]. Beijing: Zhongguo shehui kexue chubanshe, 1998.
Hao, Chunwen 郝春文. Tang houqi wudai Songchu Dunhuang sengni de shehui shenghuo 唐后期五代宋初敦煌僧尼的社会生活. Beijing: Zhongguo shehui kexue chubanshe, 1998.
Shklovsky, Victor. Жизнь художника Федотова [Zhizn’ hudozhnika Fedotova]. Izdatelʹstvo detskoy literatury, 1936.
Šklovskij, Viktor. Жизнь художника Федотова [The Life of the Artist Fedotov]. Izdatelʹstvo detskoy literatury, 1936.
The examples above were taken in part from these webpages:
- A FAQ on the official MLA 8 style website about the use of non-Roman alphabet characters: https://style.mla.org/nonroman-characters/
- A library page about using Chinese sources in English-language papers, which addresses the same problem and gives APA, MLA, and Chicago examples: Hong Kong Baptist University Libguide .
- Another library guide about using Chinese, Japanese and Korean Sources: Yale University Libguide .