THE SHINING: A SEPARATION A Fundamental Flaw in Adaptation Studies

University essay from Göteborgs universitet/Institutionen för språk och litteraturer

Abstract: In recent years, the academic field of adaptation studies has started questioning the fidelityledapproach to adaptation that was long its guiding principle. This essay builds upon thisnovel approach by focusing on the conflictual relationship between Stephen King’s novel TheShining (1977) and the film version (1980) directed by Stanley Kubrick. This comparativestudy shows the ways in which Kubrick’s film transcends its source material to establish itselfas a unique piece of art, not beholden to standards of fidelity in order to succeed. The focus ofthe argument is on the central themes of the novel and the film, aspects of metafiction andpostmodernism, and Kubrick’s deployment of Freud’s ideas about the uncanny.

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