Date: Thu, 23 May 1996 09:25:25 -0400
To: Athena Discuss 
Subject: Re: plagiarism

Peter Daniels wrote:
> Why don't you go see what Piotr actually wrote? Inasmuch as the URuk IV texts
> appear to be the very first things ever written down, and inasmuch they come
> from ca. 3200 BCE, how could there be documents from 4200 BCE?

As I said before somewhere, absence of evidence is not evidence of
absence.  Which, implicitly, you concede, with the weasel word "appear"
above.  Therefore, the URuk IV texts cannot in themselves say anything
about whether or not the Egyptians had writing in 4200 BC, and 
cannot serve as a datum point intended to restrict inferences
concerning when the Egyptians introduced the sidereal calendar.
I cannot be more plain.

> The Afrocentrists do not distinguish between ":Gr34eeks who plagiarize" and
> "Greeks who don't", so there is no reason in pointing out their rhetorical
> excesses to do so either.

Here you compound your error.  First you lump all Greeks together, now
you lump all Afrocentrists together.  Look, Diop made very specific
charges, eg. that Archimedes attributed to himself the theorem that
bears his name, knowing as he did so that the credit was owed to 
prior Egyptian sources.  That is a very specific charge, and is either 
true or not true.  If true, it amounts to plagiarism, pure and simple.  
Diop cites evidence in support of the charge.  What say you in Archimedes'
defense?  Leave aside talk of Greeks and Afrocentrists.  These are
improper generalizations in this context which seem only to confuse 
some people.


PS. I think I may have sent you in private email the post to which
you responded, when my intent, in all these exchanges, is to post
to the list.  I would be grateful if you would post it for me.

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