For more than 30 years, David Cronenberg has produced films, mostly outside the Studio system, which continue to disturb, surprise and challenge audiences. He has also been repeatedly drawn to literary fiction for inspiration, adapting works by figures like William Burroughs, J.G. Ballard and Patrick McGrath. This book is only the second single-authored study on Cronenberg as well as containing the first detailed analysis of eXistenZ (1999) Spider (2003) and A History of Violence (2005), it is the first to explore how understanding certain written texts, from both underground and mainstream fiction, can help us understand how Cronenberg's films work. Cronenberg's literary aesthetic is discussed via the process of adaptation, t just in relation to overt source material but also writers such as Vladimir Nabokov, Angela Carter, Margaret Atwood, Brett Easton Ellis and Clive Barker. The book examines how Cronenberg's literary influences function, particularly in terms of narrative structures and suggests the nature of their importance for Cronenberg in his conception of the director as auteur. It also considers the current state of adaptation studies and the need to move beyond conventional psychological frameworks in film analysis more broadly and Cronenberg's work in particular.
Mark Browning has taught English and Film Studies in a number of schools in England and was a Senior Lecturer in Education in Bath. He has published study guides for Film Education, academic articles on the processes of adaptation and currently lives and works as a teacher and freelance writer in Germany.