Old School Tobias Wolff Analysis

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In the book Old School by Tobias Wolff, the unnamed narrator struggles through healthy imitation and plagiarism inside of the Hill school. While attending this school, the narrator enters a writing contest. The submission the narrator uses is of another person, but he claims the writing to be so related to him and how the writing is his life in a sense. The narrator ends up plagiarizing the piece and is expelled by the school. The school expelled him with thought of reputation and to set an example for the other students. Honor is what is said to drive the decision for expulsion, but was it just for the school. The school’s response to plagiarism wasn’t unfair, although it seemed harsh the school did it with thought of the narrator and the school in mind.
The line between healthy imitation and plagiarism can be drawn between someone claiming to be the story and someone
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The school said they expelled the narrator because it would hurt the honor of the school, but this might not the entire truth. If the school had let this event fly it would have damaged the reputation of the school, while also hurting the narrator too. The future of the narrator would have been damaged because he might not have become a writer. When the narrator left the school, the school’s reputation didn’t fall, and the narrator was in a better position than he would have been. This means that it’s a win-win scenario for the narrator and the school. After all this the narrator realized that when he submitted something it needed to be his own work. Susan, the character the had her poem plagiarized, ended up taking the event positively. “Plagiarism, not imitation, is the sincerest form of flattery” (157). After this event the narrator became an authentic writer. Without the school taking the narrator’s future into account, him becoming a writer could have never
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