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rmeyers's picture

context

I think you posed a good question here about context: remixing should not just be the passing off a work as your own (feel free to debate me here) but learning from/adding to/simplifying/whatever a previous work. (For example: there is a difference between publishing Shakespeare's Hamlet under your own name with no changes even if he did take the story from someone else, and using Hamlet to create a new work --using Shakespeare's language to create new meaning or mix it with something else, or at the very least adding your own footnotes/context.) I guess the question is, for me, how much of her own spirit and work did Hegemann put into her (new) book? And this is a question the article does not seem to answer, although I would hazard a guess that she put lots of time and creative energy into it.

I think in schools plagarism is such an issue because teachers fear that their students will not 'learn' something if it is not new, or that having something new proves that a student has worked harder. Instead, maybe we should think about thoughfulness --you can think deeply on a subject and learn from it without being entirely 'creative' on your own. Sadly, you can also plargarize and not give any thought to learning or what you are doing. So maybe a better tactic would be teaching kids how to remix/reform/assimilate information and make it their own-- they will understand and learn much better that way too. (And I am fairly certain thoughts like these have been voiced before... so there you go.)

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