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Journal of English Philology

Ed. by Kornexl, Lucia / Lenker, Ursula / Middeke, Martin / Rippl, Gabriele / Stein, Daniel Thomas

CiteScore 2018: 0.22

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 0.130
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.336

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Volume 130, Issue 3


Adaptation for the postcolonial community: Jindabyne’s contested spaces

Renate Brosch
Published Online: 2012-10-19 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ang-2012-0502


In this article, I discuss the Australian film Jindabyne, an adaptation of Raymond Carver’s short story “So Much Water So Close to Home”.1 Starting from the premise of contemporary adaptation studies, that such remediations should not be judged on the basis of fidelity to the literary source, I argue that the achievement of Jindabyne lies in its very deviations from the text. By transporting the story to an Australian setting, the film introduces the issue of interracial relations into the narrative and thus adds a postcolonial dimension to the story. Instead of focusing on individual psychology and the marital problems of a couple, the film shifts the focus to the social effects of the denial of historical culpability on the part of white Australians. I investigate the techniques and strategies which produce interest in a small-town community burdened with the continuing heritage of colonial injustice, especially the film’s use of visual images as a means of transnational appeal. Images of borders and border-crossings express its engagement with interracial proximity and conflict. In my response-oriented interpretation I hope to show how the movie succeeds in enlisting the participation of viewers and uniting them into a temporary ‘imaginary community’ with a postcolonial agenda.

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Published Online: 2012-10-19

Published in Print: 2012-10-01

Citation Information: Anglia - Zeitschrift für englische Philologie, Volume 130, Issue 3, Pages 364–377, ISSN (Online) 1865-8938, ISSN (Print) 0340-5222, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ang-2012-0502.

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