English grammar guides that prescribe the inclusion of the Oxford (serial) comma

Growing up privileged with the instruction that a comma should be placed after each item (except the last) in a series of three or more items (i.e., before the and, or, or occasionally nor), and continuing to observe how much clearer and balanced Oxford comma–including lists are in my reading, writing, editing, and blagging adult life, I grow more and more curious why in the world the opposite rule seems to have been taught so widely in the English-speaking world and ESPECIALLY in the non-native English-speaking world. Literally every single grammar and style guide for English usage that I can find either unconditionally requires the final comma in lists or recommends it, except for newspaper and journalism-related style guides. The only reason these ever decided it might be helpful to omit a vital punctuation mark was to save that extra millimeter of space that might occasionally be necessary for their print copies. But, as Grammar Girl says, “Really, unless space is incredibly expensive, I can’t imagine why anyone would decide the best method is sometimes leave it out and sometimes add it in.” Here in the 21st century, there’s just no reason to omit it.

Regardless of space constraints, every other English grammar guide, originally published before the internet and which continue to be published in hard copy, requires these wonderful, clarifying commas in every list. Here I’ve compiled a continuously growing list of English grammar guides that unconditionally require a comma before the last item of every list. I would love it if you would post the URLs or, if that’s unavailable, the bibliographical information for any others that you know of.

Oxford University Press
Chicago Manual of Style
Harvard University Press
United States Government Printing Office
Strunk & White
American Psychological Association
Purdue Online Writing Lab
grammar.ccc.commnet.edu
Garner’s Modern American Usage
Follett’s Modern American Usage
Gregg Reference Manual
Fowler’s Modern English Usage (Though maybe Henry Fowler was less dogmatic than others believe/remember.)
Grammar Girl
The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation
American Medical Association
Modern Language Association
National Punctuation Day

Two references that encourage but don’t absolutely require the serial comma are:
Scientific Style and Format: The CSE [Council of Science Editors] Manual for Authors, Editors, and Publishers
The American Heritage Guide to Contemporary Usage and Style
(It should tell you something that these guides don’t proscribe the Oxford comma’s omission but never omit it themselves.)

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