Sunday, February 24, 2008

Aritstotle and authenticity

A lot of the teachers I’ve been listening to lately have been distraught over plagiarism in their students’ writing. I try to sympathize, but I can’t relate. I’m not having those issues. When writing begins with inquiry, makes connections to the self’s place in the world, and sourcing is transparent, there doesn’t seem to be much of a problem.

At the same time I’ve been reading about Aristotle’s rhetorical triangle – the connections and interdependence of speaker, audience, subject; the appeals to logos, ethos, pathos; and the added elements of context and purpose. When we compose from that framework, plagiarism is an awfully alien concept.

Painting by Raffaello Sanzio from Wikimedia Commons and is a public domain image

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