Friday, July 12, 2013

Predecessors VI: Fischer-Euwe 1960 (Part II)

Yesterday we were discussing the game Fischer-Euwe from the 1960 Olympiad, in the context of its appearance in two Times columns by Ray Keene, both of which, though in largely different ways, plagiarised their content from Part Four of Garry Kasparov's My Great Predecesors.

In the course of writing those columns Ray plagiarised another book as well - one of the most famous chess books ever written.

He plagiarised Bobby Fischer's My 60 Memorable Games.

My 60 Memorable Games - of which I have the Faber 1972 edition, pictured above - is quoted several times in My Great Predecessors' analysis of Fischer-Euwe. You know it is quoting from Fischer, because it provides quotation marks and attributes the quotations to Fischer.

My 60 Memorable Games is used several times in Ray Keene's analysis of Fischer-Euwe. You do not know it is quoting from Fischer, because it does not provide quotation marks and does not attribute quotations to Fischer.

The term for this is "plagiarism".

Below, for purposes of comparison, is the text of Fischer-Euwe from my edition, where it appears on pages 133 to 136.

As I said above, Fischer is quoted in various places in the course of Kasparov's treatment of the 1960 game. But the first time he is quoted in a note to a move annotated in one of Ray's columns is in the note to White's fifteenth, which appears in My Great Predecessors thus:

and in My 60 Memorable Games thus.

In Ray's 2011 column the move is annotated like this:

which is recognisably Fischer (the "exploit it" and the horrible pawn structure) but is at least not lifted word-for-word in the style to which we are becoming accustomed.

But what are we to make of Black's fifteenth? Here is Fischer:

and here is My Great Predecessors, quoting him:

and here is Ray's 2012 annotation, mentioning neither and plagiarising both.

Here is Fischer's note to his eighteenth move:

and here is My Great Predecessors, quoting his note:

and here is Ray from 2011, omitting not a word from the note in My Great Predecessors - except the name of Fischer.

This is how My Great Predecessors annotated White's twenty-fourth.

This annotation was then plagiarised in Ray's 2012 column:

which mentions Fischer, but with no sense that it's a quotation, either direct or indirect, from Fischer or anybody else. From Ray, you would have no idea that "squeeze the most out" was Fischer's. (Below is Fischer's comment, which as you see is actually to his twenty-sixth move.)

This leaves Black's thirty-second move, annotating which Kasparov quotes Fischer's anecdote:

which appears in My 60 Memorable Games like this.

And here is Ray, with the "trap", the analysis and

"which leads to a draw. However, simply 34 Ke2 wins"

which apart from using the algebraic 34 Ke2 where Fischer used the descriptive 34 K-K2, is what Fischer wrote. But Fischer is not mentioned.

"It's these tidbits you remember best", said Fischer. But what Ray remembers least is to credit him.

It's simple, straightforward, rampant plagiarism.

[Thanks to Pablo Byrne and Angus French]

[Previous Predecessors: see plagiarism index]
[Ray Keene index]


ejh said...

I was wondering actually if Ray fancied bringing out a volume of My Sixty Memorable Plagiarisms.

JBH said...

No, Ray is currently working on a five-set volume entitled My Great Plagiarisms....

ejh said...

Amusingly, that comment came through five times, which I assume is due to our horrendous moderation system. If it was a gag, applause and apologies for deleting the other four...

Anonymous said...

With all respect ejh, this is becoming a bit of a yawn.

Anonymous said...

In your Keene index, you've incorrectly listed this page as

Anonymous said...

Why is "The Great Plagiarist" still at liberty to practice his craft?

Jonathan B said...

Thanks Anonymous - I've fixed the link.