Some Terms in McFarlane

Narrative vs. Enunciation
“That which can be transferred from one medium to another vs. that which, being dependent on different signifying systems, cannot be transferred” (vii)

Showing vs. Telling
“crucial changes in the (mainly English) novel towards the end of the nineteenth century” (4)
“effect of this stress on the physical surfaces and behaviours of objects and figures is to de-emphasize the author’s personal narrative voice” (5)

Cinema as “narrative entertainment” vs. ???
“ransacking the novel” (6) and also “‘going to the movies’ is going to see this type of story” (12)

Fidelity vs. Convergence
Fidelity “ignores convergence” doesn’t account for “transference” and “marginalizes production determinants” (10)

BARTHES ON NARRATIVE FUNCTIONS:
Distributional vs. Integrational groups of narrative functions
horizontal “functions proper” vs. vertical “indices” (13)

Distributional functions subdivided further into “cardinal functions” (hinge points, nuclei, kernels) vs. “catalysers” (small actions, satellites)
Integrational functions subdivided into “indices proper” and “informants” (14)

ON KINDS OF NARRATION:
1st Person vs. Oral/Voiceover vs. Omniscient vs. “Restricted Consciousness” (15)

Sequential vs. Consequential (19-on)
narrative vs. narration
story vs. discourse
histoire vs. discours
fabula vs. suzet
enunciated vs. enunciation

distinguishing this last one is essential for McFarlane (20)
He connects these to the big distinction between . . .

Transfer vs. Adaptation
“the process whereby certain narrative elements of novels are revealed as amenable to display in film” vs. “the processess by which other novelistic elements must find quite different equivalences” (13)

TRANSFER:
narrative can be transferred; enunciation cannot (23)
story/plot distinction: novel and film share story, but are different via plot (23)
does the filmmaker transfer the “cardinal functions”? (24)
identify “character functions and fields of actions” in order to compare the functions that are crucial to a narrative (24)
identify “mythic and/or psychological patterns” to see if those have been transferred (25)

ADAPTATION:
Elements that require adaptation proper are “indices, signifiers of narrativity, the writing, or enunciation” (26)
compare two signifying systems (26)
compare “the novel’s linearity and the film’s spatiality” (27)
understand film’s “codes” (since it doesn’t have a vocabulary or syntax) (28)
“stories told and stories presented” (29)

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About Kevin L. Ferguson

Associate Professor of English and Director of Writing at Queens
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