The idea of the assignment: Compare a feature film with the text from which it has been adapted.

This short paper (750-1000 words double-spaced) should compare the film Secret Sunshine with the story "The Abject," from which the film is adapted.

What are similarities and/or differences between the film and the original source material?  In your comparison, you should address one or more of the following: theme, characterization, narrative/plot, mise-en-scène, setting.  The paper must make clear, in the introductory paragraph, on which aspect(s) the essay will focusYou must support your claims and ideas with details and citation from both the film and the story, and should properly cite these and any other sources using either MLA or Chicago citation style.

Questions that may guide your essay include:

- Does the adaptation hew closely to the literary work, or is it more of a "loose" interpretation?

- Is the overall message of the original work maintained in the adaptation?

- What is gained and/or what is lost in the transformation into film form?

- Has the director's adaptation emphasized a specific interpretation of the literary text?

The one question that your paper should not pose is whether or not the film adaptation is "better" than the original piece of fiction.  While film and literature share certain formal aspects (see Corrigan, "Film and the Other Arts"), they are different mediums.  What is of greater interest is the relation between the two forms, and how the transformation from literary work to film lets us think about either or both in a new and interesting way.  Writing a paper that focuses on whether the original or the adaptation is "better" will inevitably result in a lower grade.

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