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AMERICAN LITERATURE - Elements of Short Story and Movie Review - Dr Huong

Did you know that some of the greatest American movies in the history of film were based on a short story?

  • For instance, Brokeback Mountain, Total Recall, The Shawshank Redemption, Minority Report, and Million Dollar Baby are screenplays adapted from a short story. If authors like Stephen King are famous and the adaptation of their work well known (i.e. the horror movie 'IT'), less known writers as Edgar Allan Poe have inadvertently shaped the film industry with their literary classics that were eventually turned into movies. 

  • Translating a short story into a movie required a deep understanding of the structure and process of writing as well as the writer's influence and imaginary. As such, the American literature course focuses mainly on the fundamental elements of literature. It introduces students those elements of how to read (and write) fiction such as plot, character, setting, point of view, style (tone and language), symbol, and theme. The vehicle for carrying these elements is mostly the works of short fiction drawn from American Literature. In addition, students will have the opportunity to analyze and explore the translated works of literature from other countries. Therefore, this lecture not only intends to create the foundation for students to read and research languages, histories of different societies and periods but also attributes to their critical and cultural analysis. As a result, it will open for students the windows on literary works written by Asian Americans including Vietnamese American writers.

  • Moreover, the course intends to enable students to appreciate, understand and analyze the language of films based on those elements acquired from the process of analyzing works of fiction and to stimulate their creativity by translating fictions in movies. Building a plot and choosing the right characters and symbols is, for instance, a process that can be found in an advertising campaign, event management, and content writing.