Monday, 9 November 2009

Shakespeare the plagiarist?...

Former Poet Laureate Andrew Motion, has been accused of plagiarising another author's work for his latest poem. 'An Equal Voice', was published in The Guardian newspaper on the eve of Rememberance Sunday as a tribute to war veterans; Motion describing it as 'stitching together the voices of shell-shocked people'. Yet Ben Shephard, author of 'The War of Nerves', claims Motion has in fact 'stitched together 17 passages from his book'; 'of the 152 lines...all but 16 are taken from 'A War of Nerves'...there's a word for begins with 'p' and it isn't poetry.' Motion has hit back, maintaining there is a long tradition of 'found poetry'. He uses the example of Shakespeare's play 'Anthony and Cleopatra', which borrows large passages from Sir Thomas North's 'Life of Mark Anthony'. The dispute is likely to run on for some time.

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