From its earliest days, horror film has turned to examples of the horror genre in fiction, such as the Victorian Gothic, for source material. The horror film has continually responded to cultural pressures and ideological processes that resulted in new, mutated forms of the genre. Adaptation in horror cinema is a useful point of departure for articulating numerous socio-cultural trends. Adaptation for the purposes of survival proves the impetus for many horror movie monsters. This book engages generic and thematic adaptations in horror cinema from a wide range of aesthetic, cultural, political and theoretical perspectives. These diverse approaches further evidence the horror genre's obsession with corporeal transformation and narratological re-articulation. Many horror films such as Thomas Edison's Frankenstein, John S. Robertson's Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, David Cronenberg'sVideodrome, Abel Ferrara's Body Snatchers, and Terence Fisher's The Gorgon are discussed in the book. The book sheds welcome light upon some of the more neglected horror films of cinema's first century, and interrogates the myriad alterations and re-envisionings filmmakers must negotiate as they transport tales of terror between very different modes of artistic expression. It extends the volume's examination of adaptation as both an aesthetic process and a thematic preoccupation by revealing the practice of self-reflexivity and addresses the remake as adaptation. The book analyses the visual anarchy of avant-garde works, deploys the psychoanalytic film theory to interpret how science and technology impact societal secularisation, and explores the experimental extremes of adaptation in horror film.
This chapter investigates the processes by which civilian bodies were converted for military purposes within the first sixteen or so weeks of army life: the phase of basic training. It suggests that there were two key principles to this process. Army instructors had to achieve control over the recruit’s body in order to subject him to the authority of the regime. Thus, men were told what to eat, when to rest, what to wear and how to behave during their free time. Instructors also proceeded to transform the recruit’s body into an effective military machine by making it, fit, ordered and productive. This was achieved through a strict regime of physical exercise, field exercises, team sports and military drill. Soldier’s testimonies suggest, however, that while some men came to identify with the army’s ideals and worked hard to transform their bodies, others found ways of circumventing the army’s rules. In the safety of their barrack rooms both officers and men got drunk, dressed as women and had sex with each other. By drawing on these experiences this chapter therefore considers the dynamics of compliance, resistance and participation in modern regimes of the military through corporeal transformation.
) As a genre, horror abounds with mythic resonance. The essays that follow engage generic and thematic adaptations in horror cinema from a wide range of aesthetic, cultural, political and theoretical perspectives. These diverse approaches further evidence the horror genre’s obsession with corporeal transformation and narratological rearticulation. Additionally, they illustrate
from the fear of what one might become as from the process of becoming itself. These instances of corporeal transformation and ontological anarchy link the fluidity of late capitalist socio-economics with alternative (and often ‘dangerous’) matrices of desire and power, revealing a myriad of post-humanist, and specifically post-Desert Storm, cultural anxieties. In the end, however, Body Snatchers
amnesia instigated by futures-trading in the City of London, a Goldman Sachs banker in Paris who is secretly a changeling, a woman’s corporeal transformation into a department store in New York. Fredric Jameson has famously called for the invention of new aesthetic forms to project ‘a global cognitive mapping’ of ‘the world space of multinational capital’. 21 For
about the place of the body in history. The extent to which compliance with regimes of corporeal transformation imposed by modern institutions was unthinking, and how far it was an act of human agency, would seem to be important for understanding modernity itself. Finally, Roy’s story above is provided from the testimony of the soldier himself. Oral evidence is central to this work as it seeks to engage with the lived experiences of wartime recruits. Military records, medical documents, government records and other sources are important for exploring the designs of
brothers, when I am laid out, / They then may feed in quiet’ 4.2.236–7). Although these images are not literalized in fantastic corporeal transformations, their effect depends on more than metaphorical significance. Thus Ferdinand’s association of the duchess with the witch (‘The witchcraft lies in her rank blood’ 3.1.78) seems disconcertingly justified, when he later acts out her
physical transformation as a result of their moral degradation. The ‘unnatural lust’ in which the prisoners indulged, one colonial doctor reported, led to ‘an unnatural appearance of the parts’. This corporeal transformation was accompanied by a total reversal of gender identity: ‘many’ of these men had become ‘commonly known and recognised amongst their fellow prisoners as females or colonial