Unbinding the text

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Intermediality concerns either the transgression of the boundaries between conventionally distinct media or the iconic enactment of one medium within another. How does this function in such a complex multimedia work as <i>Prospero&#8217;s Books</i>, Peter Greenaway&#8217;s film adaptation of Shakespeare&#8217;s <i>The Tempest</i>, which not only comments on other media but also addresses all other adaptations of Shakespeare&#8217;s play? How is the figure of dislocation &#8211; shipwrecks, loss of home and culture, the disorientation generated by Prospero&#8217;s masques &#8211; translated into Greenaway&#8217;s postmodern adaptation? To what degree does adaptation itself involve dislocation as Shakespeare&#8217;s figuration of dislocation resonates throughout Greenaway&#8217;s multimedia reworking of this text into contemporary sensibilities? Not only does the film self-reflexively perform the very process of adaptation but by &#8216;destructuring&#8217; &#8211; or dislocating &#8211; the text into images, it also creates a visual vocabulary articulating a new order of reading and suggesting a new visual literacy.


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