I'm using the APA citation style. The author in question is Spanish. In one paper, he uses the format "John Forbes". In the other, he uses "John Forbes Nash". It feels weird to cite two works from the same author using different last names ("Forbes, J.", and "Nash, J. F.").

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    If I correctly understand Spanish names, this author's surname is "Forbes Nash" and so the second citation should be "Forbes Nash, J." Commented Sep 16, 2023 at 0:39
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    Is it clear in the John Forbes Nash paper that only Nash is used as the surname and not Forbes Nash together?
    – Bryan Krause
    Commented Sep 16, 2023 at 0:39
  • @BryanKrause No. But it looks like he omits his actual last name from most publications. The one with the full name is actually a doctoral dissertation.
    – Wood
    Commented Sep 16, 2023 at 0:50
  • @Wood There's no "actual last name" here.
    – Bryan Krause
    Commented Sep 16, 2023 at 0:53

1 Answer 1


Official names in Spain and Latin America consists of two last names, one from the father and one from the mother, e.g. Gomez y Sanchez. The latter can be omitted to conform to the prevalent naming scheme in the literature. You adopt APA by using the "first" last name, i.e. Gomez in my example.

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