Tuesday, February 23, 2010


In one of my classes we were watching an Argentinean movie The Official Story (La historia oficial). It is a very tragic story that explores the horrible aftermath of the military dictatorship in Argentina. Of course, I've seen the film many times, so while the students were watching it, I was grading papers for a different course. While grading, I discovered a blatant case of plagiarism among the essays submitted to me. Not only was a text copy-pasted from a website, it was also a really silly, horribly written text, full of factual errors.

Plagiarism is the only thing students can do that makes me very angry. In literally saw red when I discovered it. My blood pressure went up and I felt horrible. Right then, the movie ended with a very tragic scene. We turned the lights on, and obviously the students noticed that I was visibly shaken (by the plagiarism, not the movie.)

As a result, the students decided that I must be a very sensitive person to be brought near tears by a film I have seen many times before. I overheard two of my students discussing my unusual sensitivity after class. :-)

I do recommend the movie, though. You do feel shaken to the core by it at the first viewing.

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