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Palgrave Studies in Adaptation and Visual Culture

Subversive Adaptations

Czech Literature on Screen behind the Iron Curtain

Authors: Bubeníček, Petr

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  • First book-length study of Czech literary film adaptation in English
  • Looks at a historically significant period about which little is known
  • Disproves the notion that state-controlled film industry behind the Iron Curtain produced only works pandering to official ideology
  • Takes a rare look at adaptation studies beyond traditional Anglophone cultures
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eBook $64.99
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  • ISBN 978-3-319-40961-0
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $119.99
price for USA
Softcover $84.99
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About this book

This book deals with film adaptations of literary works created in Communist Czechoslovakia between 1954 and 1969, such as The Fabulous World of Jules Verne (Zeman 1958), Marketa Lazarová (Vláčil 1967), and The Joke (Jireš 1969). Bubeníček treats a historically significant period around which myths and misinformation have arisen. The book is broad in scope and examines aesthetic, political, social, and cultural issues. It sets out to disprove the notion that the state-controlled film industry behind the Iron Curtain produced only aesthetically uniform works pandering to official ideology. Bubeníček’s main aim is to show how the political situation of Communist Czechoslovakia moulded the film adaptations created there, but also how these same works, in turn, shaped the sociocultural conditions of the 1950s and the 1960s.

About the authors

Petr Bubeníček is Assistant Professor in the Department of Czech Literature and Library Studies at Masaryk University, Czech Republic. He specializes in the history of modern Czech literature, literary interpretation, film adaptation, and intermediality. He has published several studies, in addition to editing three issues on film adaptation for the journals Česká literatura, Iluminace, and Pandora.

Reviews

“Bubeníček’s study is a remarkable historian’s project, as his introduction focuses on offering a nuanced overview of social thought between 1948 and 1969. … Bubeníček’s entire volume is, indeed, structured this way. Its great merit lies in the broad, well-documented historical overview it proposes, combined with the masterly interpretation of both literary and cinematic techniques.” (Maria Chiorean, Metacritic Journal for Comparative Studies and Theory, Vol. 5 (1), July, 2019)
“Throughout this tour of post-war Czech cinema, Bubeníček is an urbane, perceptive, and exceptionally well-informed guide. He is a rewardingly subtle analyst of his country’s political history, its literary and cinematic landmarks, and especially the visual and auditory texture of the films in which he takes such contagious delight. … Bubeníček’s expositions are as illuminating as they are thorough … .” (Thomas Leitch, Adaptation, Vol. 11 (03), 2018)
“Petr Bubeníček focuses on six outstanding film adaptations of literary works, released in Czechoslovakia between 1954 and 1969. Despite the communist ideological pressure, these films were able to push against the prescribed boundaries. The subversion ranged from the subtle Aesopian language and nostalgia for the past, to the harsh disillusion and open criticism of the Stalinism. The book’s exceptional merit is its precise analysis of poetic and cinematic techniques, presented in the complicated sociocultural conditions of the 1950s and 1960s.” (Jiří Holý, Charles University, Czech Republic)

“This is an absorbing exposition of film adaptations from a period in Czechoslovakian history when political pressure was combined with a certain artistic freedom. Petr Bubeníček offers sensitive and multifaceted interpretations of films and their sources thoroughly embedded in cultural and political history. He unravels subtle layers of meaning, hovering between the aesthetic and the subversive, and finally leaves the reader with a sensation of better understanding the complex interrelations between art and society.” (Lars Elleström, Linnaeus University, Sweden)

Table of contents (6 chapters)

Table of contents (6 chapters)
  • Introduction

    Pages 1-41

    Bubeníček, Petr

  • Adaptation as Subterfuge: Silvery Wind

    Pages 43-84

    Bubeníček, Petr

  • Adaptation as Play: The Worlds of Jules Verne Come Alive

    Pages 85-128

    Bubeníček, Petr

  • Adaptation as Challenge: Marketa Lazarová and Romance for Flugelhorn

    Pages 129-167

    Bubeníček, Petr

  • Adaptation as a Reflection of the Zeitgeist

    Pages 169-196

    Bubeníček, Petr

Buy this book

eBook $64.99
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-3-319-40961-0
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $119.99
price for USA
Softcover $84.99
price for USA

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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Subversive Adaptations
Book Subtitle
Czech Literature on Screen behind the Iron Curtain
Authors
Series Title
Palgrave Studies in Adaptation and Visual Culture
Copyright
2017
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s)
eBook ISBN
978-3-319-40961-0
DOI
10.1007/978-3-319-40961-0
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-319-40960-3
Softcover ISBN
978-3-319-82228-0
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XI, 224
Number of Illustrations
10 b/w illustrations
Topics

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