Two scholars have accused another scholar of committing plagiarism multiple times in a half-dozen books, the first of which was published in 1980 and the most recent just last year. The scholars make the accusations in a 70-page document, provided to The Chronicle, that includes many instances in which exact wording is reproduced without quotation marks, and long passages that closely mirror other authors' previously published work.
It is an unusually painstaking effort to uncover apparent scholarly wrongdoing. But what makes it even more unusual is how it all came about, and how it came to involve Alan Sokal, a physics professor at New York University who is best known for the hoax that bears his name. . . .