Perspectives on Plagiarism and Intellectual Property in a Postmodern World

Edited by Lise Buranen & Alice M. Roy
Foreword by Andrea Lunsford

Subjects: Composition And Rhetoric Studies
Paperback : 9780791440803, 324 pages, April 1999
Hardcover : 9780791440797, 324 pages, April 1999

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Table of contents



Part I: Definitions

1. Legal and Historical Definitions

Copy Wrong: Plagiarism, Process, Property, and the Law
Laurie Stearns

Originality, Authenticity, Imitation, and Plagiarism: Augustine's Chinese Cousins
C. Jan Swearingen

Intellectual Property, Authority, and Social Formation: Sociohistorical Perspectives on the Author Function
James Thomas Zebroski

Competing Notions of Authorship: A Historical Look at Students and Textbooks on Plagiarism and Cheating
Sue Carter Simmons

2. Academic Definitions

Whose Words There Are I Think I Know: Plagiarism, the Postmodern, and Faculty Attitudes
Alice M. Roy

"But I Wasn't Cheating": Plagiarism and Cross-Cultural Mythology
Lise Buranen

A Distant Mirror or Through the Looking Glass? Plagiarism and Intellectual Property in Japanese Education
L. M. Dryden

The New Abolitionism Comes to Plagiarism
Rebecca Moore Howard

3. Literary and Theoretical Definitions
The Illusion of Modernist Allusion and the Politics of Postmodern Plagiarism
Kevin J. H. Dettmar

Poaching and Plagiarizing: Property, Plagiarism, and Feminist Futures
Deborah Halbert

From Kant to Foucault: What Remains of the Author in Postmodernism
Gilbert Larochelle

Imperial Plagiarism
Marilyn Randall

Literary Borrowing and Historical Compilation in Medieval China
Robert André LaFleur

Part II: Applications

4. In the Writing Center
Writing Centers and Plagiarism
Irene L. Clark

Writing Centers and Intellectual Property: Are Faculty Members and Students Differently Entitled?
Carol Peterson Haviland and Joan Mullin

Plagiarism, Rhetorical Theory, and the Writing Center: New Approaches, New Locations
Linda Shamoon and Deborah H. Burns

5. In Academic Administration
Confusion and Conflict about Plagiarism in Law Schools and Law Practice
Terri LeClercq

Student Plagiarism as an Institutional and Social Issue
Edward M. White

When Collaboration Becomes Plagiarism: The Administrative Perspective
Henry L. Wilson

6. In Instruction and Research
Plagiarism as Metaphor
David Leight

The Ethics of Appropriation in Peer Writing Groups
Candace Spigelman

The Role of Scholarly Citations in Disciplinary Economies
Shirley K. Rose

7. In the Marketplace
Brand Name Use in Creative Writing: Genericide or Language Right?
Shawn M. Clankie

GenX Occupies the Cultural Commons: Ethical Practices and Perceptions of Fair Use
Joan Livingston-Webber

Works Cited

Offers a wealth of thinking about the complex and often contradictory definitions surrounding the concepts of plagiarism and intellectual property.


This book offers a wealth of thinking about the complex and often contradictory definitions surrounding the concepts of plagiarism and intellectual property. The authors show that plagiarism is not nearly as simple and clear-cut a phenomenon as we may think. Contributors offer many definitions and facets of plagiarism and intellectual property, demonstrating that if defining a supposedly "simple" concept is difficult, then applying multiple definitions is even harder, creating practical problems in many realms. This volume exposes the range and breadth of these overlapping and complex issues, reflecting a postmodern sensibility of fragmentation, and clarifies some of the confusion, not by reducing plagiarism to ever simpler definitions and providing new or better rules to apply, but by complicating the issue, examining what plagiarism and intellectual property are (and are not) in our more or less postmodern world.

This book offers and explains various definitions of plagiarism. Issues covered include copyright law and plagiarism; imitation and originality in classical rhetoric; sociohistorical perspectives; and late-nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century notions of authorship in student publications and textbooks. The authors also offer different applications of these plagiarism definitions in specific arenas including university writing centers, administrative settings, peer-writing groups, textbook publishing, and the wider marketplace.

Lise Buranen is Faculty Director of the University Writing Center and Alice M. Roy is retired Professor of English and Linguistics at California State University at Los Angeles.


"...discursive practices may not be as easy to label as we once thought, nor have we sufficiently thought through the issues surrounding agency, action, and authoring—and the ways in which these issues frame and shape our ideas of plagiarism....Contemporary concepts of plagiarism are not only fraught with contradictions but are also fairly new.... Hence the great need for a collection like this one, which offers a wealth of thinking about the complex and often contradictory definitions surrounding such loaded terms as 'plagiarism,' 'intellectual property,' 'copyright,' 'imitation,' even 'voice.' " — from the Foreword by Andrea Lunsford