An anonymous University of Bristol second year student saved themselves from slipping well below their own academic standards this week as they masterfully transformed a below par essay into a thoughtful and original piece that was eventually awarded a first.
Inspired by local street artist Banksy’s recent exploits, the assignment was submitted as a hard copy encased in a specially crafted frame. Unbeknownst to the marker however, the frame was programmed to shred the literary composition immediately after it was awarded its final mark, adding a unique twist to an otherwise bland summative submission.
The Whip was granted an interview with the Faculty of Arts Professor lucky enough to have been bequeathed with the opportunity to assess such a seminal piece of modern, uninhibited creativity. “The writing and text quality was actually pretty poor. Their referencing wasn’t great either” he remarked.
“But when I stopped marking, and the frame started shredding, I realised I’d got it all wrong. This work wasn’t meant to be ‘good’ in a conventional sense. It was meant to provide a commentary on universities as elitist institutions”.
He continued “once I’d convinced myself that this abstract and essentially random insight I’d projected onto the work was in fact the writer’s true creative motivation, I realised their piece was full of exactly the kind of pseudo-original shit that gets you the top grades. Just like when people use Prezi instead of PowerPoint.” He concluded “I had no choice but to award a score of 87 for the module.”
But despite this high praise from the upper echelons of the university, the identity of the mysterious creator remains hidden.
“We’ll never know who did it” another department member said. “Just like Banksy, all we have to go on is the ground-breaking piece of art itself. Well, also their candidate number, university profile, grade history, re/play account, accommodation identification number and student finance reference data. But it’s basically the same.”