A lawyer is in the midst of a bizarre case that intersects criminal law and academia. Raphael Golb, 49, is accused of impersonating a rival of his father, Norman Golb, a leading expert on the Dead Sea Scrolls and University of Chicago professor. Norman Golb (left) is the author of “Who Wrote the Dead Sea Scrolls?” and is a rival of NYU Professor Lawrence Schiffman (right).
Golb is accused of not just impersonating Lawrence Schiffman, a New York University professor, but sending emails to Schiffman’s colleagues confessing to plagiarism.
Norman Golb, a professor of Jewish history and civilization at Chicago, insisted “This has everything to do with the politics of the scrolls.”
The emails were not particularly clever, but the son is a real estate lawyer out of his element. One read “That plagiarism stuff that I was accused of a long time ago, I did do it but I hope you’ll cover for me,”
Like all good academic blood feuds, this one is refreshingly arcane. Golb rejects the view that the scrolls are the work of a single Jewish sect, but rather believes that they are a collection of several different sects. Sounds like fighting words.