Plagiarism articles put me in a festive mood and HNN has a year-end collection of such: oh joy.
Nothing helps the healing more than public scandal, and given the depth of corruption in the historians' profession, given the vast amount of bad history cranked out year after year, given the boxcars full of worthless prizes bestowed on miserable hacks, we readers can benefit greatly from the spotlight of truth occasionally sweeping over the sludgefield of commercial nonfiction.
But on to the goodies.
History Scandals: What Historians Think of the AHA's Policy [on Plagiarism] - This is actually a summary of three recent scandal books.
The Crisis in History: A Review of the Three Books Written About the Scandals - disappointingly bland recap, sorry to say.
What Ron Robin Says in His Book - "Robin argues, latter-day scandals are media events..."
What Jon Wiener Says in His New Book - "Historians targeted by powerful outside groups can face intense media scrutiny and severe sanctions for transgressions, while historians connected to powerful outside groups can be shielded from the media..."
Historians in Trouble: Why Some Get Nailed By Jon Wiener - "The American Historical Association [AHA] recently abandoned its procedures for addressing charges of plagiarism and professional misconduct. That gives the media, and the forces that shape them, even more power to define the issues and adjudicate scholarly controversies, to honor scholars who advance their partisan political agendas and punish those who challenge those agendas."
And speaking of partisan political agendas, get a load of these two panels from the upcoming AHA meeting:
World Affairs during the Reign of the Second Bush: Doing History without the Archives
Hubris and the Irrationality Principle in the Foreign Policy of Recent Presidents: From Dwight Eisenhower to George W. Bush: A Roundtable
And best of all, Historians, the Media, and the Politics of Academic Scandal.
Wiener and Robin are the presenters at this last panel, which should guarantee a perfect persecution vibe.
"We're all guilty, so it's unjust to make an example of any one of us."
Put it on a nametage, wear it at your convention folks. I'll print the bumperstickers.