The more we talk about subtle plagiarism, uninintended copying or serendipital inspiration the more I seem to stumble on references to this phenomenon. I am intrigued. Seriously intrigued. It could have something to do with this overdose of information that we are exposed to nowadays but it is not always so. I am toying with the idea of furthering my studies in an all new field away from the pastures legal and this “information exchange” business is quite a basket to open.
Reading the Economist’s “Intelligent Life” I came across an interview with Philip Pullman – the man behind the book behind the film called “The Golden Compass”. The book is not called “The Golden Compass” (that’s the US inspired name) but “His Dark Materials” and it is the first in a trilogy, inspired, among other things by Milton. Here’s the bit of the interview that set my radar blipping:
“He learnt ‘yards’ of Milton. When he began writing ‘His Dark Materials’ (the title itself comes from Milton), he realised after a while that he was telling the same story. ‘But I didn’t think on the one hand, ‘Oh, bugger, I’m telling the same story’, or, on the other hand, ‘Oh. great, I can copy it.’ I just realised that in his patch Milton had been working on the same thing. And a long time ago the original writer of Genesis had been working on the same story.”