The soul has greater need of the ideal than the real for it is by the real that we exist, it is by the ideal that we live

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

It doesn't belong to you

I have very littel time this moring to devote to a subject I really want to talk about for hours. Plagiarism.

A 17 year old girl has been accused of stealing as much as a full page of text from another authors work. She defends herself by saying she changed things and took the material into a completely different context.  WHAT?

Despite the uproar caused by this revelation, "Axolotl Roadkill" has been selling better than ever and has been nominated for the $20,000 fiction prize at the Leipzig Book Fair. "Obviously, it isn't completely clean but, for me, it doesn't change my appraisal of the text," a jury member and newspaper book critic told the New York Times, explaining that the jury knew about the plagiarism accusations when it selected the novel for its short list. "I believe it's part of the concept of the book."

Plagiarism as concept, there's a novel idea, no pun intended.  This child and anyone else who hasn't the fortitude to sit down and write what is their own and not steal from others need to be taught a lesson quickly, and early. This cannot be allowed to stand.

I had a my first plagiarist last semester and I sat on her as quickly as I could.  She turned on the tears and begged forgiveness.  I had none to give.

I did allow her to do the work over, and though I'm certain she didn't apply as much effort as she could have she at least turned in something else. I doubt she'll do it again.

Writing is tough.  It takes discipline, it takes imagination, and it takes the initiative to sit down and write every single day.  It's a commitment.

But when it's done there's no feeling like it, the accomplishment of finishing a work completely of your own creation. 

But if you don't do these things...It doesn't belong to you.

Ray gosling was arrested yesterday after confessing on air that he killed his lover who was dying of AIDS.

I haven't looked to see how much glee there is amongst the children who were so quick to judge yesterday.  I'm sure there'll be plenty.

And so it goes.

Love, cause it's all you got.

1 comment:

Bigg said...

I read about this, I thought her actual argument was rather clever - I mean, people have been writing the same stories over and over since before the old testament, and you can find elements of The Epic of Gilgamesh in any soap opera - so recontextualizing is going to become a more and more accepted academic practice... just my opinion, of course!