Plagiarism: is it really so bad?

Today we are looking at plagiarism as a generative force. Don’t worry: we’ll start yelling about it again tomorrow when someone we don’t like does it and we need a cathartic moment of screaming and self-righteous pearls-clutching.

I think it is inevitable that writing winds up happening in relationship to reading. When we go to school to learn to write we look at piece after piece until they’re so ingrained that when we sit down to compose our own we can’t help but be served by the structures and shapes of stories, essays, poems we’ve read. With a real sense of intent, though, we can find unexpected liberation in embracing the shells of works we’ve loved to do the work we feel compelled to do.

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