Master of Arts (MA)
First Advisor's Name
First Advisor's Committee Title
Second Advisor's Name
Second Advisor's Committee Title
Third Advisor's Name
Third Advisor's Committee Title
King Lear, film, film studies, adaptation studies, film adaptation, House of Strangers, Broken Lance, Film Noir, Western, Shakespeare, Yvonne Griggs, literature, genre films, English
Date of Defense
The purpose of this thesis is to evaluate and refute Yvonne Griggs’ claims that the films “House of Strangers” (1949) and “Broken Lance” (1954) are as Griggs deems “genre-based adaptations” of William Shakespeare’s “King Lear.” I argue that the films, although they have some essential elements of “King Lear,” lack intentionality and reception, pivotal components in determining viability as a Shakespearean film adaptation. Using Griggs’ book as my critical background, I will show that these films are better classified under their respective genre categories, Western and film noir, not as “King Lear” genre adaptations. I will also suggest criteria for determining the level of canonicity of a “King Lear” film adaptation. Popularity of films does not determine validity, and a film does not need purported Shakespearean provenance to validate its ratings. Some films, like these, merely reference or pay homage to Shakespeare through use of essential elements of “King Lear”; here, I deem such affinities to be more unintentional than intentional.
Funk, Sophia G. I., "Simply Genre Films: Extracting “King Lear” from “House of Strangers” and “Broken Lance"" (2014). FIU Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 1632.
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