The Authentic Self and Performance Self

In the discourse of academic integrity, the identity between writer and their work is put through critical assessments of plagiarism.   In “Observing the Performance Self: Multiplicity versus Authenticity” moral judgments of plagiarism depend on fundamental views of personal-hood and values.  The author distinguishes between two identities of students: the authentic self and the performance self.  The authentic self creates work identified as theirs, derived from their own expression of their thoughts.  They are recognized as being “genuine, integral, individual”.  The other classification is the performance self.  For practical purposes, the follow a “whatever works approach”, meaning the performance self’s overall concern is getting to an ends regarding matters of presentations and writing.  While the authentic self celebrates uniqueness and individuality, the performance self sees little importance in personal achievements and originality.
The choice between performance and authentic is a personal that is determined by discipline and curriculum.  Students formulate different approaches towards conducting themselves academically based on the materials at their disposal, whether it’s access to libraries or electronic resources. The most important requirement for students to reach their potential is to find inspiration from teachers and subjects.  Teachers who demonstrate integrity and credibility can help create the proper environment to guide students to become flexible.  Being authentic does not mean one must sacrifice their principles in order to perform in group settings. Society requires collaboration not only in the classroom, but also in the workplace.  The purpose of institutions are help students reach their potential and to prepare them to function in collaborative settings.  Group projects, study sessions, and even athletics are preparatory measures.  Uniqueness does not have to be compromised.  It just has to be flexible. Individual contributions to any collaborative is theirs and creates a greater end: solitary. Participation may require a compromise of principles and may challenge one to remain critical and original.  It is up to the individual to learn multiple means and still be true to themselves.


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