By Shelley Cobb (auth.)
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Extra resources for Adaptation, Authorship, and Contemporary Women Filmmakers
But many women are and will be, and there will be another generation of daughters, and so the issue is much more about the future and continuity and literally inheritance … At the end there is another kind of inheritance that becomes possible. I’m certainly well aware of how I’m standing on my mother’s shoulders and grandmother’s shoulders – what I was able to do that they weren’t able to do, what they gave to me, and what was taken from them. (Florence, 1993: 282) Both Woolf and Potter use the mother-daughter metaphor, which has been a matter of much debate in feminist theory, to evoke a specifically matrilineal narrative of history and identity.
And at the beginning of this chapter, I noted, the battle over authorship in classic-novel adaptations is particularly fraught and often relies on a gendered language that can put the 38 Adaptation, Authorship, and Contemporary Women Filmmakers woman author, both literary and cinematic, at a disadvantage. But these adaptations with the figure of the woman author in the text allow us to see the relationship, or, as I have been suggesting, the conversation, between the two authors as one that not only appropriates, rewrites, and embodies the literary author but also adapts, reflects, and asserts the authority of the cinematic author.
She speaks of a connection between her and Fanny through their gender and class identities: I connected to her as a woman. I connected to her experience of starting out life poor and ending up rich (my personal history). I connected to her rage about not being considered central to the real social story. I connected to her insecurity around more educated and elegant individuals. I felt like she was a barely noticed Canadian at a British function. (Moussa, 2004: 257) Rozema’s repeated use of the phrase ‘I connect to her’ builds a picture of Fanny and the filmmaker as kindred spirits, establishing in the end, not just that Rozema could have been Fanny, but that Fanny could have been Rozema.