Visiting Professor of Cultural Sociology
Literature in the Cinema Age: Social Systems Approach. A Case Study of the Cinematized and Cinematically-Adapted German Literature of the 20th Century
Systems theory is a versatile, hence all-encompassing theory which can be applied to all disciplines, from mathematical to physical and from psychological to human sciences. In order to maintain their system-environment differentiation, autopoietic (i.e. self-reproducing) systems need to go through courses of evolution. Evolution of a system implies its increased complexity, hence the differentiation of subsystems within its internal environment. According to social systems theory, Literature or Verbal Art is a subsystem of Art, which is in turn one of the five major social subsystems, the other four being Religion, Polity, Economy and Science. Literature has its own respective subsystems or genres, namely Epic, Drama, Lyric, Novel and Screenplay.
In accord with the evolution of their containing society, literary subsystems too undergo courses of evolution and achieve greater complexity in each stage. The final known literary genre distinguished by literary theoreticians is the novel. But the novel too has further evolved into the new art subsystem ‘cinema’, which is in turn literally represented by the screen play.
Through the application of systems theory to the close study of literature’s process of evolution into cinema, it is possible to introduce a new philosophical methodology of literary and art studies as well as developing practical ‘cinematic adaptation’ and ‘cinematization’ methodologies which shall respectively further enhance the evolution of existing literary works into the more sophisticated art subsystem cinema as well as helping literature survive in the ‘post-cinema’ age. Since the German society has densely gone through a considerable number of social vicissitudes in the past century and borne precious works of cinema and literature simultaneously, German-language literature and cinema offer rich study cases for the present research.
: Golnaz SARKAR FARSHI
from 01.09.2013 through 01.09.2014
Prof. Dr. Dirk Baecker
Golnaz SARKAR FARSHI