Postgraduate Course: Filming the Canon: Adaptation, Authorship, Alterity (CLLC11204)
|School||School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures
||College||College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
|Credit level (Normal year taken)||SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate)
||Availability||Not available to visiting students
|Summary||This course offers an introduction to the field of adaptation studies by studying cinematic transpositions of literary classics and of various works considered part of the ¿new canons¿, constituted by female, queer and racialised artists. The course focuses on how film adaptation challenges ideas of authorship and on how adaptation is ideally positioned to explore the mechanisms involved in the processes of canon constructions, with a selection of case-studies from different cultural and social contexts.
In a conversation with François Truffaut, Alfred Hitchcock argued that he would never adapt literary classics such as Dostoyevsky¿s Crime and Punishment because, in his own words, that is ¿somebody else¿s achievement¿. This course explores the fascinating relationship between film adaptation, authorship, and canon formation. It examines how the canon ¿ i.e. the artistic works considered to be important and worth of study ¿ has gradually moved from being considered the expression of individual creative genius to being viewed as a hegemonic social construction. Considering adaptations of literary classics and of traditionally silenced voices, this course explores the extent to which adaptation problematises notions of authorship and canonicity.
In doing so, this course offers theoretical and critical analysis of a series of case-studies through key concepts in the field of adaptation studies and, more generally, of cultural studies: fidelity, intertextuality, film genre, feminist film theory, new queer cinema, race and ethnicity, memory, hybridity, migration, etc. Placed at the intersection between literature, film and the other arts, the case-studies include adaptations of different artistic forms ¿ including theatre, fiction, poetry, painting, and graphic novels ¿ to the medium of film, spanning from different cultural context, such as Latin America, the United States, Europe, and East Asia.
The course is organised in three parts. It opens with an introduction spanning two weeks to explore theoretical aspects in the field of adaptation studies, including key concepts such as fidelity criticism, medium specificity, intertextuality, appropriation, and adaptation as a process. The second part offers, in three weeks, an in-depth exploration of screen adaptations of the literary classics and challenges notions of authorship and canonicity. The third part devotes four weeks to the study of new canonical formations by focusing on adaptations from marginalised collectives in relation to structures of gender, race, sexuality and migration.
The course is taught in ten two-hour seminars over one semester, with each session opening with a short introduction (cc. 20 min) given by the tutor. Handouts will be provided for each seminar at least one week in advance, with questions for discussion. The list of core primary materials will be accessible on Learn in advance of the start of the course, at the start of the semester. All films will be provided either via Box of Broadcasts (Learning on Screen); Media Hopper; or Zoom / in-person screenings at least one week in advance. Discussion boards will be made available to continue the conversation online after the seminars.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
||Other requirements|| None
Course Delivery Information
|Academic year 2022/23, Not available to visiting students (SS1)
|Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info)
Lecture Hours 20,
Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4,
Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours
|Assessment (Further Info)
|Additional Information (Assessment)
1 x 1000 word short essay (30% of final mark)
1 x 3000 word final essay (70% of final mark)
||- Written feedback on short essay. Students are also invited to an individual feedback session during which the feedback can be discussed in further detail and an essay plan for the final essay can be discussed.
- Written feedback on the final essay.
|No Exam Information
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
- Articulate in-depth knowledge of key issues and debates in the field of adaptation studies.
- Analyse a diverse selection of film adaptations in relation to relevant theoretical frameworks.
- Undertake independent research under the guidance of the tutor and offer evidence of research initiative.
- Construct coherent arguments which demonstrate an awareness of the problems posed by the texts and issues they are studying.
Adaptation (dir. Spike Jonze, 2002)
Brother to Brother (dir. Rodney Evans, 2004)
Caesar Must Die (dir. Vittorio Taviani and Paolo Taviani, 2012)
Frida (dir. Julie Taymor, 2002)
Looking for Langston (dir. Isaac Julien, 1989)
Persepolis (dir. Marjane Satrapi, Vincent Paronnaud, 2007)
The Handmaiden (dir. Park Chan-Wook, 2016)
The Trial (dir. Orson Welles, 1961)
Weekend (dir. Jean-Luc Godard, 1967)
Cortázar, Julio. ¿The Southern Highway¿, in All Fires the Fire. New York: New Directions Publishing, 2020.
Kafka, Franz. The Trial, Oxford: Oxford UP, 2009.
Nugent, Bruce, and Thomas H. Wirth. Gay Rebel of the Harlem Renaissance: Selections from his Work. Durham [N.C.]: Duke University Press, 2002.
Satrapi, Marjane. The Complete Persepolis. New York: Pantheon Books, 2007
Shakespeare, William. Julius Caesar, 1599. (available online)
Waters, Sarah. Fingersmith. London: Virago, 2002.
Aragay, Mireia. ¿Introduction: Reflection to Refraction: Adaptation Studies Then and Now¿, Books in Motion Adaptation, Intertextuality, Authorship, edited by Mireia Aragay. Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2005: 11-34.
Cobb, Shelley. ¿Film Authorship and Adaptation¿ in A Companion to Literature, Film, and Adaptation, edited by Deborah Cartmell. Blackwell, 2012: 105-121.
Gorak, Jan. ¿Canons and Canon Formation.¿ The Cambridge History of Literary Criticism, edited by H. B. Nisbet and Claude Rawson, vol. 4, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1997, pp. 560¿584.
Leitch, Thomas (ed). The Oxford Handbook of Adaptation Studies. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017.
Naremore, J. (1990) ¿Authorship and the Cultural Politics of Film Criticism¿, Film Quarterly 44 (1), 14-22.
Stam, Robert. ¿Introduction: The Theory and Practice of Adaptation¿, Literature and Film: A Guide to the Theory and Practice of Film Adaptation, edited by Robert Stam and Alessandra Raengo, Malden: Blackwell, 2005: 1-52.
Barbara Straumann, "Adaptation - Remediation - Transmediality.¿ in Handbook of Intermediality: Literature - Image - Sound ¿ Music. Edited by Gabriele Rippl, Berlin: De Gruyter, 2015: 249-256.
Bingham, Dennis. Whose Lives Are They Anyway? The Biopic as Contemporary Film Genre. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 2010
Blin-Rolland, Armelle, Guillaume Lecomte, and Marc Ripley. ¿Introduction: Comics and Adaptation.¿ European Comic Art 10.1 (2017): 1¿8.
Boozer, Jack (ed.) Authorship in Film Adaptation. University of Texas Press, 2008.
Bubení¿ek, Petr. Subversive Adaptations: Czech Literature on Screen behind the Iron Curtain, Cham: Palgrave Macmillan, 2017.
Carroll, Rachel, ed. Adaptation in Contemporary Culture: Textual Infidelities. London: Continuum, 2009.
Cartmell, Deborah, and Imelda Whelehan (eds.) Screen Adaptation: Impure Cinema. Basingstoke and New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2010.
Cutchins, Dennis, Katja Krebs, and Eckart Voigts (eds.) The Routledge Companion to Adaptation. New York: Routledge, 2018.
Demory, Pamela (ed.) Queer/Adaptation: A Collection of Critical Essays, Cham: Palgrave Macmillan, 2019.
Dobson, Michael. The Making of the National Poet: Shakespeare, Adaptation and Authorship, 1660-1769. Oxford: Clarendon, 1992
Ferguson, Ailsa G. Shakespeare, Cinema, Counter-Culture: Appropriation and Inversion, Routledge, 2016.
Geal, Robert. Anamorphic Authorship in Canonical Film Adaptation A Case Study of Shakespearean Films, Cham: Palgrave Macmillan, 2019.
Grant, Barry Keith (ed.) Auteurs and Authorship: a Film Reader, Malden, MA: Blackwell, 2008.
Griggs, Yvonne. The Bloomsbury Introduction to Adaptation Studies: Adapting the Canon in Film, TV, Novels and Popular Culture. London: Bloomsbury Academic, 2016.
Hutcheon, Linda. A Theory of Adaptation. New York: Routledge, 2006.
Mooney, William H. Adaptation and the New Art Film: Remaking the Classics in the Twilight of Cinema, Cham: Palgrave Macmillan, 2021.
Naremore, James (ed.) Film Adaptation. New Brunswick, N.J: Rutgers University Press, 2000.
Polaschek, B. The Postfeminist Biopic Narrating the Lives of Plath, Kahlo, Woolf and Austen. London: Palgrave Macmillan UK, 2013.
Sanders, Julie. Adaptation and Appropriation, New York: Routledge, 2005.
Stam, Robert. ¿Revisionist Adaptation: Transtextuality, Cross-Cultural Dialogism, and Performative Infidelities¿, Oxford Handbook of Adaptation Studies. Edited by Thomas Leitch, New York: Oxford, 2017: 239-250.
Stam, Robert, and Alessandra Raengo (eds.) A Companion to Literature and Film, Malden, Mass.: Blackwell, 2004.
Stam, Robert. ¿Beyond Fidelity: The Dialogics of Adaptation¿, Film Adaptation, edited by James Naremore. London: Athlone, 2000: 54-76.
Stamm, Laura.¿The Queer Biopic in the AIDS Era. New York: Oxford University Press, 2022
Tasker, Yvonne. ¿Vision and Visibility: Women Filmmakers, Contemporary Authorship, and Feminist Film Studies¿. Reclaiming the Archive: Feminism and Film History, edited by Vicki Callahan. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 2010, 213¿30.
Taylor, Gary. Cultural Selection: Why Some Achievements Survive tThe Test oOf Time aAnd Others Don¿t. Basic Books, 1996.
Truffaut, François. ¿A Certain Tendency in French Cinema.¿ Auteurs and Authorship: A Film Reader, edited by Keith Barry Grant. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing, 2009: 9¿18.
Voigts-Virchow, Eckart (2009) ¿Metadaptation: Adaptation and Intermediality Cock and Bull¿ Journal of Adaptation in Film & Performance 2.2 (2009): 137-152.
Astruc, Alexandre. ¿The Birth of a New Avant-Garde: Le Camera-Stylo.¿ The New Wave: Critical Landmarks, edited by Peter Graham. Garden City: Doubleday, 1968: 17-23.
Attwood, Feona, Brian McNair, and Clarissa Smith (eds.) The Routledge Companion to Media, Sex and Sexuality. London and New York: Routledge, 2018.
Beugnet, Martine and Marion Schmid, Proust at the Movies. London and New York: Routledge, 2017
Calbi, Maurizio. Spectral Shakespeares: Media Adaptations in the Twenty-First Century, New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2016.
Campbell, Christopher P. The Routledge Companion to Media and Race. London and New York: Routledge, 2016
Cartmell, Deborah (ed.) A Companion to Literature, Film, and Adaptation. Chichester: Wiley Blackwell, 2014.
Fitzsimmons, Lorna, and Michael A. Denner. ¿Tolstoy on Screen¿. Tolstoy on Screen, edited by Lorna Fitzsimmons and Michael A. Denner, Evanston, Illinois: Northwestern University Press, 2015.
Foucault, M. ¿What is an Author?¿, The Foucault Reader, edited by P. Rabinow, Harmondsworth: Penguin, 101-20. 1986 /1969.
Geraghty, Christine. Now a Major Motion Picture: Film Adaptations of Literature and Drama. Lanham, Maryland : Rowman & Littlefield, 2008.
Giddings, R. and Sheen, E. (eds.) The Classic Novel: From Page to Screen. Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2002.
Grossman, Julie. Literature, Film, and their Hideous progeny: Adaptation and Elastextity. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2015.
Hopton, Tricia, et al., eds. Pockets of Change: Adaptation and Cultural Transition. Lanham, Md.: Lexington Books, 2011.
Krebs, Katja (ed.) Translation and Adaptation in Theatre and Film. London: Routledge, 2013.
Leitch, Thomas. ¿Adaptation Studies at a Crossroads.¿ Adaptation 1.1 (2008): 63-77.
Leitch, Thomas. Film Adaptation and Its Discontents: From Gone with the Wind to the Passion of the Christ. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2009.
Naficy, Hamid. An Accented Cinema: Exilic and Diasporic Filmmaking. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2018.
Nicklas, Pascal, and Oliver Lindner. Adaptation and Cultural Appropriation: Literature, Film, and the Arts, De Gruyter, 2012.
Palmer, R. Barton, and David Boyd, eds. Hitchcock at the Source: The Auteur as Adaptor. Albany: State University of New York Press, 2011.
Shachar, Hila.¿Screening the Author The Literary Biopic, Cham: Palgrave Macmillan, 2019.
Slethaug, Gordon E. Adaptation Theory and Criticism: Postmodern Literature and Cinema in the USA. Bloomsbury Academic, 2014.
Stam, Robert. Literature Through Film: Realism, Magic, and the Art of Adaptation. Blackwell, 2005.
Thornham, Sue (ed.) Feminist Film Theory: A Reader. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 1999.
Zea, Zahra Tavassoli. Balzac Reframed: The Classical and Modern Faces of Éric Rohmer and Jacques Rivette, Cham: Palgrave Macmillan, 2019.
|Graduate Attributes and Skills
||Students will develop graduate skills in all four clusters of ability:
- Research and inquiry
- Personal and intellectual autonomy
- Personal effectiveness
In particular, students will be:
A. Able to exercise critical judgement in creating new understanding; be ready to ask key questions and the limitations of their own knowledge and recognise the need to regularly challenge all knowledge; search for, evaluate and use information to develop their knowledge and understanding; recognise the importance of reflecting on their learning experiences and be aware of their own learning style.
B. Be open to new ideas, methods and ways of thinking; be creative and imaginative thinkers; be independent learners; be able to make decisions; be intellectually curious.
C. Make effective use of oral, written and visual means to critique, negotiate, create and communicate understanding; seek and value open feedback to inform genuine self-awareness
D. Have the confidence to make decisions based on their understandings and their personal and intellectual autonomy; be able to work effectively with others
|Keywords||Comparative Studies,Remediation,Film Adaptation,Alterity,Intersectionality
|Course organiser||Dr Inma Sanchez-Garcia
|Course secretary||Mr Stuart Moyes
Tel: (0131 6)50 3646