Adaptation as a function of technology and its role in the definition of medium specificity

Authored by: Malcolm Cook , Max Sexton

The Routledge Companion To Adaptation

Print publication date:  April  2018
Online publication date:  April  2018

Print ISBN: 9781138915404
eBook ISBN: 9781315690254
Adobe ISBN:


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The process of adaptation necessarily engages the technologies of the chosen media and ­associated ideas of medium specificity. In adapting works between media, producers must negotiate between fidelity to the source and perceived specificities of the chosen technological medium. The degree to which this is explicitly acknowledged varies from instance to instance. It is the relationship between source and target media that makes a work an adaptation, distinct from other terms used to describe commensurate production processes: remake, reboot, production, performance, cover version, translation, reproduction, and edition. As Sarah Cardwell (2002: 21) states in her discussion of the adaptation of costume drama to television, “to call something an adaptation of another text is to highlight the conscious, complex process of implementing changes necessary to re-present the source text under new conditions (in a new medium).”

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