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Characters as fictional migrants: Atonement, adaptation and the screenplay process
Dalarna University, School of Humanities and Media Studies, Moving Image Production. Gothenburg University.
2020 (English)In: Journal of Screenwriting, ISSN 1759-7137, E-ISSN 1759-7145, Vol. 11, no 1, p. 81-97Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The migration metaphor has been widely used in connection with media adaptions, but the metaphor has remained an abstract figure of speech. Yet, to understand characters as migrants who go through journeys of acculturation when they are adapted for the screen may enhance understanding of both the characters' potential and problems that may arise during the development process. This article proposes that the development of characters and their processes - as fictional beings - can be understood through the use of models that describe real migrants' adaptation processes. Using Christopher Hampton's screenplay drafts for the film Atonement (2001), it outlines how such migratory journeys go hand in hand with screenwriters' problem-solving processes. The article thus develops the idea that migrating characters, in their capacity as fictional beings and the thematic issues that they represent, both adapt to and appropriate their new media environments; simultaneously, they are appropriated by new creative forces and by the conventions of those new media environments, who in turn must adapt to the characters in this process of bi-directional acculturation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Intellect Ltd., 2020. Vol. 11, no 1, p. 81-97
Keywords [en]
adaptation, fictional beings, migration, problem-solving, screenplay development, screenwriting
National Category
Arts
Research subject
Research Profiles 2009-2020, Intercultural Studies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:du-33766DOI: 10.1386/josc_00014_1ISI: 000528261000006Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85088036975OAI: oai:DiVA.org:du-33766DiVA, id: diva2:1442011
Available from: 2020-06-16 Created: 2020-06-16 Last updated: 2022-09-07Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Adapting Adulthood: Migrating Characters and Themesfrom Novels, Screenplays, and Films
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Adapting Adulthood: Migrating Characters and Themesfrom Novels, Screenplays, and Films
2021 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

When novels are adapted for the screen, the fictional characters are inevitablytransformed in the adaptation process, and so is the thematic content. This studyconsiders the characters and the thematic content of a story as migrants who leavethe land of the novel in order to adapt to a life on the screen with transformed selfidentities.The five articles that this thesis is based on focus on what happens to therepresentation of adulthood when novels are adapted for the screen. The articles testmodels for analysing thematic representation using popular works of fiction such asAtonement, Fifty Shades of Grey, Gone Girl, Me before You, Room, Shutter Island, The DaVinci Code, The Martian, The Road, Up in the Air, and novels by Patrick McCabe.Because novel-screenplay-film adaptations comprise alternative versions of astory, with their complementary lines of reasoning, they constitute particularly richthematic representations and metaphors for what social adaptation requires. In thatcontext, the thesis regards novel-screenplay-film adaptations as processes and objectsat the same time, each version an integral part of a greater dynamic whole.Relating to current theories of the attraction of fiction, chapter 1 presents theaim of the study. Chapter 2 describes the novel-screenplay-film adaptation processas a non-linear, two-way process of adaptation and appropriation, and a receptionbasedmodel for regarded adapted characters as fictional migrants. Chapter 3outlines a pragmatic model, with the hero’s journey as a foundation, to analyse thestructure of thematic lines of reasoning in fiction in general and adaptations inspecific, together with thematic markers. The chapter also presents the markers ofadulthood used in the articles, before chapter 4 and 5 summarise and discuss the fivearticles and implications related to adaptation studies, pedagogy, and screenwriting.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Göteborg: Göteborgs universitet, 2021. p. 236
National Category
Specific Literatures Studies on Film
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:du-42523 (URN)978-91-8009-198-5 (ISBN)978-91-8009-199-2 (ISBN)
Public defence
2021-02-26, Online via Zoom och i Lilla hörsalen, Humanisten, Renströmsgatan 6, Göteborg, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2022-09-09 Created: 2022-09-07 Last updated: 2023-03-17Bibliographically approved

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Hermansson, Joakim

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  • apa
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  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
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  • de-DE
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  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
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Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf