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date: 18 August 2019

Abstract and Keywords

The technology for and, consequently, the artistic potential of cinema emerged at the end of the nineteenth century during a period roughly contemporaneous with the careers of many prominent realist authors. Despite this concurrence, early cinema was, by and large, of relatively little interest to the creators of realist literature. However, their literary works have proven immensely popular with filmmakers. After surveying the limited but ultimately telling responses to the new medium by a number of writers from the realist period, this chapter suggests, through a concluding analysis of three distinctive works of cinema that were based on realist fiction, that the two forms ultimately share an abiding and even structuring affinity for the power of realistic representations to define and direct the reader’s or viewer’s perspective.

Keywords: film, cinema, gaze, representation, realism

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