Dear President Sullivan,
It has come to our attention through web posts by the University that Arianna Huffington has been invited to to appear on the UVa Lawn on October 15 along with Deepak Chopra. We, the undersigned, are writing today to wholly object to Ms. Huffington’s scheduled event.
With all due respect to the University and the Contemplative Sciences Center, at the heart of the matter is plagiarism. We are outraged that Ms. Huffington would come to very University that employed an esteemed professor of art history, the late Dr. Lydia Csató Gasman, whose original and groundbreaking scholarship on Picasso was plagiarized by Huffington in 1986-87. In an interview with Vanity Fair about Huffington, Dr. Gasman, author of Mystery, Magic and Love: 1925-1938, Picasso and Surrealist Poetry, (Ph.D. diss. Columbia University, 1983), called Huffington “an intellectual kleptomaniac” for appropriating her four-volume work and publishing it before Gasman’s opus was in contract. Gasman stated, “What she did was steal twenty years of my work.” The Huffington’s met with Gasman at their home in Manhattan in order to offer a severance. Gasman’s suggested recompense was scoffed at; she did not have the resources to mount a legal battle against the wealthy Huffington’s despite the admission of fraud, and so the incident became a sour fact.
As former students, colleagues, supporters and friends of Dr. Gasman’s, we the undersigned protest Huffington’s impending appearance at UVA on October 15. We hereby request that in deference to the legacy and memory of professor Gasman who taught in the McIntire Department of Art and Art History for over 20 years, and in light of the fact that Ms. Huffington's actions were in breach of the Honor Code, Ms. Huffington be informed of this error in judgment, and therefore uninvited.
With respect, sincerely yours,