did a professor plagiarize a professor who was plagiarizing an already professor-plagiarized sentence?
This has next to absolutely nothing to do with the theme or thesis of this little tumblr, but, well, I needed somewhere to put it. So, here it is.
Let’s call this a plagiarism activity.
Let’s lead with this question: did a professor plagiarize an already plagiarized sentence? Did something more complicated than that happen?
Stotsky (1984) synthesized the research on writing-reading relationships. She found better writers read more than poorer writers, better writers tended to be better readers, and better readers produced more syntactically mature compositions than did poorer readers.
There is a demonstrated connection between learning to write and learning to read. Better writers do end [sic] to be better readers, better writers tend to read more than poorer writers and better readers tend to produce more mature prose than poorer readers (Stotsky).
Here are Homstad and Thorson:
… better writers tend to be better readers, better writers read more than poorer writers, and better readers produce more syntactically mature writing than poorer readers.
So, now that those are on the table, let’s look at Stotsky’s actual words:
To summarize briefly, the correlational studies show almost consistently that better writers tend to be better readers (of their own writing as well as that of other reading material), that better writers tend to read more than poorer writers, and that better readers tend to produce more syntactically mature writing than poorer readers.
So, the question that I ask is: did plagiarism occur, and if so, who plagiarized whom and what kind of plagiarism was it? And, best question yet, did someone plagiarize someone who plagiarized someone else? Also, will I make my students figure it out? Probably, yes.