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Adaptation Studies

ENGL 592.401
crosslisted as: CIMS 592, COML 592
instructor(s):
Thursday 9-12:00pm

The continual exchanges between literature and film throughout the twentieth and twenty-first centuries—from the Silent Shakespeares of the early 1900s to Pride and Prejudice and Zombies in 2016--have made it virtually impossible to study one without the other. Since 1895 the relationship between the two practices has evolved and changed dramatically, always as a measure of larger cultural, industrial, and aesthetic concerns. In addition to well-worn questions about “textual fidelity,” today the debates about the interactions of film and literature have opened and enriched innumerable textual case studies of adaptation but also pointed to larger concerns and debates which resonate more broadly across both literary studies, film studies, and cultural studies. These include debates about the cultural and textual terms of authorship, about the economic and political pressures permeating any adaptation, about the literature’s appropriation of cinematic and other media structures. In fact, today adaptation studies now move well beyond just literature and film, involving video games, YouTube mash ups, and numerous other textual and cultural activities that invigorate and complicate the importance of theories, practices, and histories of adaptation into the 21st century.