Thursday, May 11, 2006

What ya?!

Thats my sister's lingo :), and i bet if she knew Ms Vishwanathan, she would have said exactly that 'What ya Kaavya?!'.... but yes, $500,000 is a lot of money... and while the blog community can make jokes on 'How Kaavya Vishwanathan got rich, got famous and got ruined', and we can all pontificate on the evils of plagiarism, we should maybe spare a thought on how a 19 year old's mind works.. coz we have all been there, and its most definitely a different world indeed...
For once, ToI (last Sunday) has done a good job in a purely journalistic sense, and given the story a coverage from different angles.. it acknowledges that a person of the calibre of amitav ghosh (who was her faculty in Harvard) feels that Kaavya did have a lot of talent, and the fact that everyone from william Shakespeare downwards have been doing a lil bit of copy paste job here and there.. and also the fact that the editor of both the authors (the one who copied and the one who was copied from) is a common factor...
not that i am supporting plagiarism, but like the saying goes, its a crime only if you get caught...unfortunately Opal Mehta got a bit too famous and therefore ran a higher risk of getting caught..and Kaavya and the 40 thieved passages from one book and more from another book did get caught.. the world has changed since Shakespeare's time, and information is too easily available for something of this sort to go unnoticed...Hopefully, she will get a life after this, and can pick up enough of the broken pieces to start afresh... for its a huge burden to carry, and theres still a long way to go...
until next time, such is the prize of fame and the price of fame...

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

Manu, you didnt give any link. Wanted to check out further details of this story ...

Prero

manuscrypts said...

hey, thought this gives a good version - http://www.lacitybeat.com/article.php?id=3730&IssueNum=153

blokes said...

i thought editors were supposed to catch plagerisms! oh well- the US of A cannot stand to have a non-white runaway success- financially speaking- we love the arundhati roys who get published by freepress!

Hyde said...

I heard the little sister is arriving soon?

madatadam said...

what you say about the evil being only in the getting caught is true to an extent but i dont think many writers(hacks even) copy entire passages word for every other word literally. ideas in lit are out there and cannot be tagged to an individual but i remember that my professors used to complain about copying if every other step in my solution to a problem(math for crying out loud) was the same as someone else's.

manuscrypts said...

blokes: but wonder if that had anything to do with it...

hyde: yup!!

manuscrypts said...

madatadam: even in this case, it wasnt straight lifting but the similarities were too much to be a mere coincidence...

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