There was the Botton affair in 1993, for which Patrick Poivre d’Arvor was given a fifteen-month suspended prison sentence and a €30,000 fine for concealing abuse of corporate assets and suspended from the JT for three months. A year earlier there had been the “fake” interview with Fidel Castro, who had never actually given the presenter a face-to-face interview… Patrick Poivre d’Arvor’s career has survived several scandals. This excerpt from a “Complément d’Enquête” document on the hidden face of the former ratings star returns to the one who accompanied the publication of one of his many books.
is a journalist from The express, Jérôme Dupuis, who “raised the hare”. in the lecture Hemingway, life in excess (ed. Arthaud), a doubt assails him. To find out for sure, the literary critic decides to examine the biographies of the American writer published in French since the 1960s. “I take Peter Griffin’s biography, about Hemingway’s youth… he says. And there, I find a paragraph that is a copy and paste. I’m taking the next page from the PPDA biography, I’m taking the next page from the Griffin biography: copy and paste again…”
“In a few minutes I realize that there are dozens and dozens of pages almost cut and pasted from Peter Griffin’s biography.”Jerome Dupuis, journalist
to “More Research”
Jérôme Dupuis will eventually discover that a good quarter of the PPDA book, more than 100 pages out of 400, is nearly identical to the American biographer’s work, published in 1985 (and translated into French by Gallimard). Before publishing his revelations—in an article titled “Patrick Plagiarism of Arvor,” which earned him the 2011 journalistic “coup” of the year award—he contacted the PPDA by phone.
“I had the feeling of someone who fell from the clouds, he remember. It was very strange, he did not understand what he was saying. (…) He is so surprised by what I tell him that I may not be the author of his book, and therefore plagiarism. Obviously he can’t tell me, because to admit that would be to admit that he is not the author of this book, and perhaps some of the other earlier books of his.”
To clear itself of these suspicions of plagiarism, PPDA will accuse its editor of having mistakenly sent the journalist a working copy. His biography of Hemingway will finally be published… with 80 fewer pages.
Excerpt from “PPDA, the fall of an untouchable”, document to see in “Complément d’Enquête” on April 28, 2022.
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