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Gazette:Agenda:Call for Papers:Film adaptation and 19th century French realist novels- by 30 September 2012

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5 June 2012

source : Christophe GELLY

By 30 september 2012

Call for Papers for the 3rd issue of Ecrans

Film adaptation and 19th century French realist novels

The focus of international research in film adaptation has always been—both in France and abroad—on American films or British films, due to the predominance of this cinema in the world production. Yet the output of 19th C novel to film adaptations is significant in number and quality, for instance if we refer to cinema and television, with the TV serials directed by Claude Santelli in the 1970s. The question of why these adaptations focused on realist texts (both novels and short stories in fact), mostly from 19th C literature, remains open. Is this phenomenon specific to the French production? What in these texts can account for the fact that they are so often adapted on the screen? What perspective on these texts do the adaptations provide, whether explicitly or implicitly? The object of this issue of Ecrans is to work on a relatively unexplored field in the adaptation studies bearing on 19th C realist French novels and short stories so as to provide a counterpart to the studies that were carried out in the English-speaking cinema. We invite contributions on the following topics:

  • What evolution can be made out in the production of these adaptations? How can we explain this evolution, through considerations on the production context, or technical devices e.g.?
  • What differences should be made between TV and cinema production of such adaptations, in the wake of Sarah Cardwell’s approach on this topic?
  • What relations can be made out between the critical debate on realist novel adaptations in the English-speaking world and the French realist novel adaptations?
  • What literary forms are privileged by these adaptations? One can think of Maupassant’s short stories for instance. At what time in history does the production of such adaptation increase and why?
  • Who are the writers who are most often adapted in this field?
  • What is the ideological frame which can be identified in these adaptations? How can we compare various adapted versions of the same text, by using the notion of filmic intertext?

The proposals will have to define a corpus of study clearly.

Ecrans review


BAZIN André, “Pour un cinéma impur: défense de l’adaptation” in Qu’est-ce que le cinéma?, Paris : Les Editions du Cerf, 1981, p.81-106.

CARDWELL Sarah, Adaptation Revisited—Television and the Classic Novel, Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2002.

CARTWELL Deborah & WHELEHAN Imelda (eds), Adaptations: from Text to Screen, Screen to Text, London: Routledge, 1999.

CARTWELL Deborah & WHELEHAN Imelda (eds), The Cambridge Companion to Literature on Screen, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2007.

CORRIGAN Timothy, Film and Literature, Upper Saddle River: Prentice Hall, 1999.

ELLIOTT Kamilla, Rethinking the Novel/Film Debate, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2003.

GAUDREAULT André, Du littéraire au filmique, Paris : Armand Colin, 1999.

GIDDINGS, Robert & SHEEN, Erica (eds), The Classic Novel. From Page to Screen, Manchester; New York: Manchester University Press, 2000.

LEITCH Thomas, Film Adaptation and Its Discontent- From Gone to the Wind to The Passion of the Christ, Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2007.

McFARLANE Brian, Novel to Film: An Introduction to the Theory of Adaptation, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1996.

NAREMORE James (ed), Film Adaptation, New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, 2000.

SERCEAU Michel, L’Adaptation filmique, Liège : Editions du CEFAL, 2000.

SINYARD Neil, Filming Literature: The Art of Screen Adaptation, New York / Beckenham: St Martin Press / Croom Helm, 1986.

STAM Robert & RAENGO Alessandra (eds), A Companion to Literature and Film, Oxford: Blackwell, 2004.

STAM Robert & RAENGO Alessandra (eds), Literature and Film: a Guide to the Theory and Practice of Film Adaptation, Malden: Blackwell, 2005

VANOYE Francis, Cinéma et récit – I – récit écrit, récit filmique, Paris : Nathan, 1989.

VINCENDEAU Ginette (ed), Film/Literature/Heritage: A Sight & Sound Reader, London: British film Institute, 2011.



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