The Mentality of a Plagiarist

By | January 23, 2017

Across the wide scope of the many fields that use the power of words to write reports and books or to give speeches, one of the lingering stains that seems to develop from time to time is that of plagiarism. The basic definition of this disdained practice is using someone else’s words without their permission, though some joke that using one person’s word is plagiarism, while the use of a group of people’s words is considered research.


This issue is obviously most prominent in the literary and scientific worlds, yet political speeches can also become lightning rods for this type of controversy.
Psychoanalyst Patrick Mahony notes that the 2016 Republican convention speech of new First Lady Melania Trump used a number of the same phrases that her predecessor, Michelle Obama, had used in her own convention speech eight years earlier.

The mindset of someone that’s deemed guilty of plagiarism often boils down to one of three factors: limited education, laziness or simple arrogance. Those without the capacity to craft such words decide that expediency is more important than ethics, while those who simply don’t want to make the effort fall victim to this problem. In many cases, both of those factors are part of the arrogance, which essentially expresses the belief that no one will be able to detect any similarities.

Patrick Mahony knows that an economic component can also factor into this type of discussion, with individuals looking to make money off others work. In some instances, it can be related to an inadvertent copyright violation, yet in most cases, an individual’s arrogance gene ends up finding its way into the discussion. The defense by those making what they feel is an innocent mistake is a weak attempt that only magnifies their guilt.