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Harvard president Claudine Gay denies new plagiarism charges

Jon Bilous/

Harvard President Claudine Gay is saying she did not commit plagiarism in her 1997 Ph.D. thesis, despite comparisons showing word-for-word similarities with other authors' papers.

From The New York Post:

In one example, taken from page 12 of Gay's dissertation, Rufo points out the now-Harvard president seemingly "lifts an entire paragraph" from a 1990 paper by Lawrence Bobo and Franklin Gilliam.

Appearing in Bobo and Gilliam's original paper, published seven years before Gay wrote her thesis, is the phrase "blacks in high-black-empowerment areas–as indicated by control of the mayor's office–are more active than either blacks living in low-empowerment areas or their white counterparts of comparable socioeconomic status."

Then in Gay's paper she writes "African-Americans in 'high black-empowerment' areas–as indicated by control of the mayor's office — are more active than either African-Americans in low empowerment areas or their white counterparts of comparable socioeconomic status."

Gay sent a statement to The Boston Globe, maintaining her innocence:

"I stand by the integrity of my scholarship. Throughout my career, I have worked to ensure my scholarship adheres to the highest academic standards."

Professor Lawrence Bobo, Harvard College's dean of social science, is among those whom Gay is accused of plagiarizing. He said Monday, "I find myself unconcerned about these claims as our work was explicitly acknowledged."

Professor Gary King, a leading Harvard political scientist and one of Gay's dissertation advisers whom she is also accused of plagiarizing, called the allegations, "false and absurd."

One wonders whether Harvard students are held to the same plagiarism standards as President Gay.

Gay is facing calls to resign following her testimony about Harvards antisemitism policy before Congress last week.

"At Harvard, does calling for the genocide of Jews violate Harvard's rules of bullying or harassment, yes, or no?" GOP Congresswoman Elise Stefanik asked her.

"It can be, depending on the context," Gay said.

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