New books:Women Adapting: Bringing Three Serials of the Roaring Twenties to Stage and Screen

Wood_webNew Books: Women Adapting: Bringing Three Serials of the Roaring Twenties to Stage and Screen
Author: Bethany Wood
Women Adapting: Bringing Three Serials of the Roaring Twenties to Stage and Screen
University of Iowa Press, 2019
Women Adapting examines three well-known stories that debuted as women’s magazine serials: Anita Loos’s Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, Edith Wharton’s The Age of Innocence, and Edna Ferber’s Show Boat. Through meticulous archival research, this study traces how each of these beloved narratives traveled across publishing, theatre, and film through adaptation. The three chapters devoted to Wharton’s The Age of Innocence contain new research on the lost 1920s film adaptation as well as the 1928 stage version. Bethany Wood documents the formation of adaptation systems and how they involved women’s voices and labor in modern entertainment in ways that have been previously underappreciated. What emerges is a picture of a unique window in time in the early decades of the twentieth century, when women in entertainment held influential positions in production and management.