When we say plagiarism happens even to the best of us, we actually mean it. The fact that the most prominent minds of humankind were accused of plagiarism doesn’t make copying less malicious. Such stories, however, clearly demonstrate how easy one can make a faux-pau when it comes to originality and emphasize the importance of a scrupulous plagiarism check. Luckily, now we have the tools to ensure authenticity quickly and easily, unlike Martin Luther King Jr.’s times.

Legendary for his input to the civil rights movement, King has also become famous due to the numerous plagiarism cases.

King’s academic papers

In the late 1980s, the experts of Stanford University’s King Papers Project discovered that King’s doctoral dissertation at Boston University contained large extracts of text from another student’s work. The Boston University investigation confirmed that in his doctoral thesis, King had appropriated significant parts from other authors’ papers without citing them, which means he had plagiarised. This revelation gained publicity in the press. However, the university decided not to revoke King’s doctorate, limiting the repercussions to attaching the note about the uncovered plagiarism to his dissertation in the university library. This decision is motivated by the dissertation’s “intelligent contribution to scholarship.”

Even though the unveiled plagiarism didn’t ruin King’s reputation, we won’t recommend you adopt this strategy. At the very least, modern tools will uncover academic cheating much faster.

King’s speeches

Martin Luther King Jr.’s most remarkable speech, “I Have a Dream,” has also become the subject of accusations of plagiarism. It is claimed that the repetitive pattern “I have a dream” used in the speech was inspired by the activist Prathia Hall’s talk, attended by King a year before his own oration. Moreover, the experts find similarities between the King’s text and the address held by Archibald Carey Jr., as both speeches end with the recitation of Samuel Francis Smith’s patriotic hymn “America.”

The counter-argument voiced by Keith Miller states that King’s word usage and recitations refer to the traditions of the African-American church and cannot be considered plagiarism.

As Martin Luther King left a prominent trace in history, plagiarism-related discussions have more of a theoretical character. Your words, however, shape the future! Let it be bright and original with our progressive tools. Try our plagiarism and AI text checker now!