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Ruth Shalit (born 1971, Milwaukeemarker, Wisconsinmarker) is a freelance writer and former journalist, dismissed from The New Republic for plagiarism and inaccuracy..


Shalit graduated magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Princeton Universitymarker in 1992. Early in her career she wrote for GQ and the New York Times Magazine before becoming an associate editor for The New Republic at the age of 24.


Shalit's reporting first brought controversy in the fall of 1995, after she wrote a 13,000-word piece about the growing backlash against affirmative action at The Washington Post. Shalit admitted to "major errors" in the article, such as an assertion that a DC contractor who'd never been indicted had served a prison sentence for corruption; misquoting a number of Post staffers; and numerous factual errors, such as mistakenly claiming that certain jobs at The Post were reserved for black employees. [169045]

Shortly after the piece appeared, it was discovered that several other Shalit articles had copied several nearly verbatim passages from other writers' stories. Shalit blamed sloppy computer habits--accidentally splicing together published stories with her own notes--for the incidents. Nevertheless, Shalit was fired from the New Republic for plagiarism.

After leaving journalism, she took a job at Mad Dogs and Englishmen, a New York advertising agency. She then wrote about advertising for Salon magazine and Elle magazine. At Salon she also was again accused of inaccuracies, and Salon corrected seven errors in her article "The Name Game."

Personal life

Ruth Shalit is the sister of author Wendy Shalit. She married film producer Robertson Barrett in September 2004, becoming the stepdaughter-in-law of Edward Klein. She now lives in Los Angeles.


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