Author Jonathan Lethem talks to Jim Fleming about his “Harper’s” Magazine essay, “The Ecstasy of Influence: A Plagiarism.” As the subtitle indicates, Jonathan Lethem appropriated the words of many authors to cover the subject of plagiarism, although he provides full attribution of his sources at the end of the essay. Also, Paul D. Miller (aka DJ Spooky, That Subliminal Kid) talks to Anne Strainchamps about his book, Rhythm Science, and how the art of music sampling relates to plagiarism. We also hear a DJ Spooky/TTBOOK interview mashup.
MP3 link: here
The Lethem essay is online: here. I remember hearing about it but never read it all the way through till now; it’s astonishingly good — a fantastic summary of today’s cultural moment.
As I quoted in my senior undergraduate thesis:
Am Ende ist alle Poësie Übersetzung.
In the end all literature is translation.
—Novalis, a.k.a. Friedrich von Hardenberg
As I wrote in the conclusion chapter, my own translations were intended to “illustrate (and hopefully validate) my twofold assertion: that emulation is not bad literary practice but a respectable and indeed essential part of creation, and conversely that the insertion of one’s own personality and culture is not a sign of bad or unfaithful translation. On the contrary, both processes are unavoidable, and so we might as well do them openly.”