I created a simple BibTeX file as well as a simple LaTeX file that references said BibTeX file. However, when I printed out the LaTex file in pdf format by running C-c C-a (which, according to the AUCTeX manual, runs BibTeX, amongst other things),the bibliography section didn't appear and the citations were broken.

Trying to debug the problem, I replaced the single C-c C-a command by a sequence of C-c C-c commands (since, according to the AUCTeX manual section linked to above, C-c C-a is an abbreviation for such a sequence), and noticed that the bibtex command was not executed.

A similar question was posted in the past, to which the solution was to add a couple lines to the initialization file, but these lines are already in my initialization file.


    Author = {Jochen Wengenroth},
    Date-Added = {2017-05-08 08:16:51 +0000},
    Date-Modified = {2017-05-08 08:19:24 +0000},
    Publisher = {de Gruyter},
    Title = {Wahrscheinlichkeitstheorie},
    Year = {2008}}




\title{My Article}
\author{Nobody Jr.}

Blablabla said Nobody ~\cite{WEN08}. 


.emacs includes the following lines:

(setq TeX-auto-save t)
(setq TeX-parse-self t)

Resulting pdf file
Resulting pdf file with a blank bibliography and a broken citation

AUCTeX 11.90.0
Emacs 25.1.1
TeX Live 2016, v. 3.14159265
macOS Sierra, v. 10.12.4

  • Did you restart Emacs after setting the init file?
    – giordano
    Commented May 8, 2017 at 10:24
  • @giordano: The init file had had these lines to begin with.
    – Evan Aad
    Commented May 8, 2017 at 10:26
  • I see. Unfortunately, I can't reproduce the issue.
    – giordano
    Commented May 8, 2017 at 10:27
  • 1
    What does C-h v LaTeX-bibliography-list RET return in MyDoc.tex buffer?
    – giordano
    Commented May 8, 2017 at 10:32
  • 3
    Then parsing isn't working correctly for you (don't know why). It should be (("Bibliography")) and it's so for me. Try issuing C-c C-n in MyDoc.tex buffer and then check again the value of the variable.
    – giordano
    Commented May 8, 2017 at 10:36

1 Answer 1


For some reason, the file wasn't actually parsed, so AUCTeX didn't know about the bibliography file. This shouldn't usually happen if you set TeX-parse-self and TeX-auto-save to t, but you can easily trigger parsing with C-c C-n (TeX-normal-mode).

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