Film of the book

Course Dates: 23/01/20 - 19/03/20
Time: 12:30 - 14:30
Location: KS - Keeley Street
Patricia Sweeney

Read works of fiction and view their cinematic adaptations, considering if 'fidelity' is important in bringing a literary text to the screen. Includes The Talented Mr.Ripley by Patricia Highsmith (film Anthony Mingella) and The Razor's Edge by W Somerset Maugham.


What is the course about?

We will read works of fiction and view their cinematic transformations, developing an understanding of plot,
characterisation and narrative in a film making context. Each session includes analysis and discussion of the literary text and an opportunity to view and consider extracts from the films.

Biographical information:
Patricia Sweeney is Programme Coordinator for Literature and Film at City Lit, with specialist teaching interests in modern and contemporary literature, drama and film adaptation. In addition to her work at City Lit, Patricia has taught literature courses for the Open University and Literature, Drama and Film courses for Birkbeck, University of London.

What will we cover?

Books and films studied:
The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith
The Razor's Edge by W Somerset Maugham.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

-Identify key aspects in the work of selected writers.
-Identify social contexts of the books and films
-Appreciate the process of rendering the novel into film.
-Consider the relationship between verbal and visual language.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

All levels are welcome, though some experience of literary and/or film study would be an advantage.
An enjoyment of reading texts and viewing films is essential.
You will have a commitment to developing your analytical skills.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

A variety of teaching methods will be used: tutor exposition, large and small group discussion, readings and viewings of DVD extracts. You will be expected to undertake preparatory reading before the class.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

You will need to obtain two texts:
The Talented Mr Ripley by Patricia Highsmith
The Razor's Edge by W Somerset Maugham.

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

Look for other courses in Literature and Film Studies under History, Culture and Writing on the website at or in the prospectus under Humanities.


Customer Reviews 6 item(s)

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Reviews below are by students who have attended this course, regardless of the course teacher. Please be aware you may not be booking onto a course with the same teacher.

Impressive course.
Course Rating
Review by Helen McNulty / (Posted on 19/03/2019)
It is stimulating and it will increase enjoyment of films based on books. It will also add insight of the process of adapting a book to the cinema screen.
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Review by Stephen T / (Posted on 11/03/2019)
If you have an interest in film and novels it is a very good course to take. It is very Interesting to understand how a novel is adapted to a film.

Course Rating
Review by Anonymous / (Posted on 08/03/2019)
Stimulating and enhances appreciation of both the book and the film
Course Rating
Review by Sue Moon / (Posted on 07/03/2019)
Interesting, involving and enjoyable. A delightful, friendly and knowledgeable tutor.
Course Rating
Review by Anonymous / (Posted on 07/03/2019)
[The tutor] is a wonderful lecturer - always well prepared, she encourages class participation, is helpful and sends us home with copious interesting notes. I learnt a lot, particularly about how a film is made and all the aspects thereof. We first discussed the book, then saw extracts of an iconic film of the book. The film often differs from the book but proves valuable in most cases, the film being an art form in its own right. It is based on the book but need not be exactly like the book. It is only important to retain its essence.
Course Rating
Review by Tish / (Posted on 13/04/2015)
Tutor Biographies
We’re sorry. We don’t have a bio ready for the tutor of this class at the moment, but we’re working on it! Watch this space.

Book your place

Course Code: HLT62

Thu, day, 23 Jan - 19 Mar '20

Duration: 9 sessions (over 9 weeks)

Full fee: £159.00
Senior fee: £127.00
Concession: £70.00

Or call to enrol: 020 7831 7831

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