Essentials of Literary and Film Theory

A Newberry Library Adult Education Seminar

This seminar, scheduled for the winter/spring 2020 term, is now concluded.

This seminar offers a lively survey of literary and film theory basics. Through literary excerpts, film clips, lecture, and discussion, our sessions will explore how writers, filmmakers, philosophers, and artists—from Plato to Toni Morrison—help us appreciate the importance of a good beginning, how characters and their thoughts are represented in literature and film, the effects of patterning and framing, why books and movies often rely on the same plots, and what’s up with adaptations. Six sessions.

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A Serial Reading of Adam Bede

This Newberry Seminar is now concluded. It was held in the fall of 2018. 

To celebrate George Eliot’s bicentennial year, this seminar presents the author’s first full-length novel in manageable weekly installments for serial reading and discussion—no spoilers. Published in 1859 (twelve years before her celebrated Middlemarch) and widely acclaimed in its time, Adam Bede explores challenging issues of maturity, hypocrisy, sexuality, and the need for a humanistic view of religion, all performed in Eliot’s virtuosic prose. Weekly discussions will be supplemented with slides and film clips. Seven sessions.

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