Comparative Literature | Special Topics in Comparative Literature: Adaptations
C301 | 27563 | Professor Angela Pao


Tuesday/Thursday 2:30-3:45
Carries A&H and CS credit

In this class, we will study the adaptation of literary texts into
new literary works and into various stage and screen forms.  We will
examine the historical, cultural and aesthetic issues involved in
revising and reimagining source texts into different formats for
readers or spectators of different eras.  Among the questions we
will consider are: how does the process of adaptation differ from
that of appropriation?  What are the characteristics of the most
resilient narratives and characters that remain relevant for
audiences of different centuries and disparate cultures?  How do
generic conventions and social conditions interact to revise the
meanings of the source text?

Readings and Films:
Antigone: Sophocles – Antigone (tragedy, c. 442 BC); Athol Fugard –
The Island (drama, 1972); Janusz Glowacki – Antigone in New York
(drama, 1994)
Othello: Shakespeare – Othello; Shakespeare’s Othello as a graphic
novel; Brad Kaaya – O (2001 film); Andrew Kavies – Othello (2001
British police TV drama); José Limon – The Moor’s Pavane
Carmen:  Prosper Mérimée – Carmen (novella, 1845); Georges Bizet –
Carmen (opera, 1875); Carlos Saura/Antonio Gades – Carmen
(film/flamenco ballet, 1984); Joseph Gai Ramaka - Karmen Gei (film,
2001)
Oedipus: Sophocles – Oedipus Rex, Oedipus at Colonus (tragedies, c.
429-25, 401 BC); Hélène Cixous, The Name of Oedipus (drama, 1978);
Lee Breuer, The Gospel at Colonus (musical drama, 1985)
Critical theory: Linda Hutcheon – A Theory of Adaptation. Routledge,
2006.

Assignments:
Background research and presentation on one adaptation
Two 6-7 page papers
Final take-home exam

There will be evening screenings scheduled to view the full-length
films.