Plagiarism charges leveled against New Zealand historian

Historians in the News

A second plagiarism row has engulfed book publishers Penguin, with allegations a book about 19th century Maori land wars was withdrawn and republished because its author, a senior Victoria University historian, plagiarised parts of it.

The case comes less than two months after leading New Zealand writer Witi Ihimaera admitted his latest novel, The Trowenna Sea, contained plagiarised material, and vowed to buy back remaining copies of the book and republish it with full acknowledgments.

In the latest plagiarism row, Dr Danny Keenan – an associate professor of Maori Studies – is alleged to have copied from archaeology expert and historian Nigel Prickett without attribution in his book Wars Without End.

Sections from Prickett's 2002 book, Landscapes of Conflict: A Field Guide to the New Zealand Land Wars, appear in Wars Without End and are not referenced in the bibliography.

It is understood Prickett instructed lawyers to take Keenan's publisher, Penguin, to task over the matter. Penguin also published Ihimaera's book.

Penguin publishing director Geoff Walker refused to comment on the company's processes to ensure works were properly attributed.

"I can confirm that we withdrew Wars Without End by Danny Keenan... and just republished a revised version."...

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