A web of symbolic violence

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Many new electronic technologies of writing are quickly becoming part of everyday practice, but are not as yet so fully integrated that they have become indistinguishable from the fabric of everyday life. Although these new technologies are still visible, still strange, we are afforded an opportunity to examine them against a backdrop of commonplace practices and beliefs. In this article, I illustrate how a new technological writing practice, World Wide Web publishing, meshes and clashes with what academics have meant by plagiarism. I apply sociologist Pierre Bourdieu's theories of capital and symbolic violence to examine some ways Web publishing challenges and complicates our taken-for-granted ways of controlling and punishing plagiarizers.

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Computers and Composition