Book ‘stole’ Mormon historian’s work, but publisher offers a settlement to 'make it right’Historians in the News
tags: historians, Mormon history, plagiarism
After more than a decade of digging out anecdotes about the Mormon past — drawing a line from an elder’s letter here, a paragraph from a Sunday school report there — historian Ardis E. Parshall has grown accustomed to seeing her original work pop up in unfamiliar places.
It often appears without attribution or even a courtesy call.
But when Parshall opened a copy of Kathryn Jenkins’ latest volume, “Did You Know ... 501 Fascinating Facts From Church History,” she knew right away that the borrowing had crossed a line.
Parshall discovered that more than 60 of the anecdotes in the 348-page book came from her Mormon history blog, Keepapitchinin, as well as from other professional papers the independent historian had written.
“Sometimes she mentioned my name or Keepapitchinin,” Parshall said, “but many times she just lightly paraphrased my work and presented it as her own.”
Neither Jenkins nor her publisher, Covenant Communications (a branch of Deseret Book, which is owned by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints), contacted the researcher in advance to ask permission, she said, nor even to inform her what was being included in the book.
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