Cheating and Plagiarism - It’s Not Plagiarism, It’s Recycling

Cheating and Plagiarism - It’s Not Plagiarism, It’s Recycling

Length: 915 words (2.6 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Excellent

Open Document

Essay Preview

More ↓

It’s Not Plagiarism, It’s Recycling


What does plagiarism have to do with Shakespeare, Marlowe, Ovid's Metamorphosis, Titus Andronicus, Revenge Tragedies, Adam, Eve and the apple, and The Tempest? All these and many more are the result of plagiarism.


There seems to be a great discussion on whether or not Shakespeare is the true author of the plays associated with his name. The internet seems to be full of essays, discussion boards and book reviews all dealing with this particular topic and most of the people submitting them are very forceful and definitive about their positions. In just a few hours of searching I found well over a thousand pages dealing with the original source of the works of art assigned to Shakespeare's name. The most disappointing part was that none of the essays I read even suggested the possibility of Shakespeare just "borrowing" information and topics from other playwrights and authors. They were all mainly interested in the man who actually put the words on paper. Not only did this decrease their usefulness for this particular paper but also they made it seem like the person who wrote the plays down on paper had some particular lawful ownership over them. This was not true though.


During the time that Shakespeare was writing plays in England, there were no such laws deeming a play protected by copyright laws. Today, plays are usually published and distributed but in the Elizabethan era, plays were only written enough for the actors to learn their lines. When plays were put on there was usually a large audience. This audience could have included other playwrights and actors who would then remember pieces of what they saw and use them later in their own productions. How could this be copyrighted?


Back then, actors were lucky if they did not get stopped by the police while performing a play why would the ideas of a playwright be protected by law? I do not think anyone even cared if the plays were used as resources for other plays. If Shakespeare used a part from one of Marlowe's plays, then Marlowe could take some ideas from Shakespeare. Since most of the ideas for plays came from famous works anyway, who's to say that Shakespeare's idea was even his own?


Ovid's Metamorphosis is one of the most referenced works in the plays we have read already in class.

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"Cheating and Plagiarism - It’s Not Plagiarism, It’s Recycling." 17 Nov 2019

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Plagiarism: The Illegal Recycling of Information Essay

- Plagiarism: The Illegal Recycling of Information Plagiarism is defined as using others people’s ideas, writings, and quotes without giving credit to the author by citing the material in the paper. Plagiarism can come from copying many things including charts, graphs, text, and music. Even paraphrasing an author’s work without citing it can be considered plagiarism. Plagiarism certainly has been around long before the first research project was assigned. One of the most famous scientists Gregor Mendel had his work plagiarized by another scientist Hugo de Vries in the 19th century.[1] Mendel had come up with breakthroughs in genetics, but no one realized what he had accomplished...   [tags: Plagiarizing Essays]

Research Papers
1252 words (3.6 pages)

The Problem of Internet Plagiarism Essay

- The Problem of Internet Plagiarism In November 2001, CNN reported a case of alleged rampant plagiarism at the University of Virginia involving 72 cases and 148 students. What happened at the University of Virginia is only one of many cases of plagiarism faced everyday all over the world. Plagiarism itself is not a new problem, but the Internet has made a difficult situation even more complex. According to Ryan: Plagiarized work used to be generated through frat house recycling efforts, purchased from local ghost writers, or simply copied from campus library reference materials, all clumsy efforts readily detectable by educators familiar with their course material....   [tags: Electronic Plagiarism Copyright Essays]

Research Papers
1263 words (3.6 pages)

Plagiarism Essay

- Plagiarism missing works cited Plagiarism is a distinguished sounding word. One would almost think that it sounds like some lofty philosophical ideal named for the great Greek teacher Plagiarus, something to be aspired to. This is not so. Plagiarism is in fact a moral misdemeanor, and an academic felony. By definition, plagiarism is "a piece of writing that has been copied from someone else and is presented as being your own work." Socrates, Plato and Aristotle would have frowned on such a practice, and "Plagiarus" would have been kicked out of the academy....   [tags: Cheating Essays]

Research Papers
1724 words (4.9 pages)

Plagiarism : Cheating And Cheating Essay

- Schools across America today are not doing enough when it comes to cheating; a broader term is academic dishonesty. The numbers are on the rise and there is little to no action being taken against cheating. According to The Merriam-Webster online dictionary the act of cheating can be defined as “taking something from (someone) by lying or breaking a rule” (1). Cheating comes in many forms such as plagiarism, fabrication, and, preventing other students from completing their work to their best ability....   [tags: Academic dishonesty, Plagiarism, Cheating]

Research Papers
1559 words (4.5 pages)

Plagiarism And Cyberbullying And Cyber Cheating Essay

- Plagiarism has become an increasingly prominent issue in todays society. The internet has changed from an educational aid to an open sea for plagiarism and cyber cheating. It facilitates the unauthorized use of other peoples’ original ideas, essays, quotes, and other original material. Some teachers have even begun to require students to use the web to obtain sources for research papers to familiarize them with the current standards in society. But sometimes what turns into research for a paper can easily become plagiarism by copying a sentence here and there....   [tags: Academic dishonesty, Plagiarism, Essay mill]

Research Papers
1267 words (3.6 pages)

Essay Cheating And Plagiarism Have Their Own History

- Cheating and plagiarism have their own history. Many people believe it’s a way to get around certain challenges that we feel unable to defeat. When friends see their peers cheating, they think about their friendship, and therefore, they decide to remain silent. Not allowing teachers to know about cheating can affect your friend, people around you, and even you. Students should alert teachers about cheating, because it’s an act to save your friends, others and yourself. Cheating is “to prevent (someone) from having something that he or she deserves or was expecting to get” (Merriam-Webster)....   [tags: Academic dishonesty, Cheating, Friendship]

Research Papers
1141 words (3.3 pages)

Cheating to Pass the Test Experiment Essay

- During this experiment, we will be testing if children, grades 6th and 8th will be more tempted to cheat on a test if there is some type of reward involved for doing well. During this experiment we will be using candy as a reward if the participate gets a 80% or higher average. What exactly is ‘Cheating’. Well plagiarism, or cheating, is defined, by dictionary, “As an act or instance of using or closely imitating the language and thoughts of another author without authorization and the representation of that author's work as one's own, as by not crediting”....   [tags: cheating, plagiarism, exams, tests]

Research Papers
662 words (1.9 pages)

Plagiarism, Cheating and the Internet Essay

- Plagiarism, Cheating and the Internet Cyber cheating is defined as “the use of technology tools in inappropriate ways for academic work.”(Conradson & Hernandez- Ramos, 2004, p1) Although technology has dramatically advanced our society in many positive ways, one negative aspect of technology is its effects on student cheating. Many believe that the internet is the “number one sociable force which leads students to plagiarize.” (Mayfield, 2001, p1) There is an increasing number of online cheating websites which students use....   [tags: Plagiarism Online]

Research Papers
3045 words (8.7 pages)

The Internet and Plagiarism Essay

- The Internet and Plagiarism The World Wide Web is larger than any one person can imagine. There are an infinite amount of links to libraries and other sources of information. There are numerous search engines, such as Yahoo, which make researching really easy. We can find anything that we want on line, because there are no boundaries to our explorations, and there are no laws to stop us. You can find anything from socks to guns. People can even find completed research papers online; they simply copy and paste it to a new document, make a few adjustments, and it is ready to turn in....   [tags: Internet Plagiarism Essays Cheating]

Research Papers
1037 words (3 pages)

Technology Plagiarism Essay

- Plagiarism by Technology In today's technology driven world, many people are using the internet to fulfill their personal, professional, and educational goals. Technological advances make the internet easily accessible, from a variety of locations, for many people seeking education online. There are many online courses offered and many of the assignments place emphasis on the use of the internet as an information resource. This emphasis can be overwhelming to any student and lead to intentional or unintentional dishonest acts, on behalf of the student, including plagiarism....   [tags: Cheating Plagiarism]

Research Papers
1930 words (5.5 pages)

Related Searches

It was used in conjunction with the rape and mutilation of Lavinia in Titus Andronicus where, in Titus' speech to his daughter in IV, 1, he asked if she was "ravished and wronged, as Philomela was." (Shakespeare, 148) Philomela was raped and mutilated too in the famous story. Shakespeare could have used this simile because, undoubtedly, the audience was familiar with Ovid's story and could then understand the pure horror of the situation.


The Bible has been used as well. In The Revenger's Tragedy, the anonymous author has Vindice talking about his mother and how she is just like all other women. He does not have a high opinion of any woman, which is apparent in the very beginning. He expresses this in II, 2 when he says, "'twas decreed before the world began, that [women] should be the hooks to catch a man." (Revenger's, 120) This is using the old tale of Adam, Eve and the apple. When Eve gives Adam the apple she is setting him up to be a sinner and by this, gets him thrown out of the Garden of Eden.


No one seems to be accusing the playwrights of plagiarizing these sources. When they were cited it was just a way for the playwright to add more meaning to the play for the audience. All the stories were well known to the visitors of the theatre so they would understand the references that may have been used for comedic purposes or as a sort of explanation of what has happened.


Another source for playwrights is history. As G.B. Harrison points out in his book, England in Shakespeare's Day, the plays provide a good place for teaching history. He says: "First for the subject of them...our forefathers are revived and they themselves raised from the grave of oblivion, and brought to plead their aged honours in open presence: than which, what can be a sharper reproof to these degenerate days of ours?" So, if the subjects of plays are taken from history, like the choler Sr. Hugh Evans and the shipwreck of Sr. George Somers in The Tempest, then again, how could it be wrong to use these stories? (Rowse 348)


Therefore, the sharing of ideas amongst playwrights cannot be considered plagiarism either. Not only were there no laws against it but most of the stories were just recycled from even earlier works anyway. This is why I do not think that the "stealing from everyone" is a big deal. If all stories are just expansions of one or mutilations of others, there is no one true story. Even the Bible has passages that could be considered "borrowed." Before it was put in writing, there were many versions passed on as folklore.


Works Cited

Harrison, GB. England in Shakespeare's Day. Harcourt, Brace and Company. New York, 1928.

The Revenger's Tragedy. Anonymous. "Four Revenge Tragedies ." Oxford's University Press. New York, 1995.

Rowse, AL. The Expansion of Elizabethan England. St. Martins Press. New York, 1955.

Shakespeare, William. Titus Andronicus. Oxford University Press. New York, 1994.

Return to