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The Art of Stanley Kubrick


Admission requirements

A relevant BA degree and an interest in film, literature, and adaptation of literature.


In this course we will explore the work of Stanley Kubrick (1928-1999), one of the greatest and most influential directors in cinematic history. Kubrick’s oeuvre covers a wide range of genres, and in many cases his films became landmarks of particular genres, such as the war film (Paths of Glory), science fiction film (2001), and horror (The Shining). As most of his films are adaptations of novels or short stories, we will also read some of his sources (Lolita, A Clockwork Orange, Barry Lyndon, Dream Story), and compare text and film in the context of adaptation/ appropriation.

Course objectives

  • This course will extend the students’ skills in the reading of textual and visual narratives, and the understanding of adaptation.

  • Students will explore critical debates surrounding Kubrick’s films.

  • The course will aim to provide for literature students the critical skills necessary for the analysis of visual texts. This will involve an understanding of: basic film theory; cinematography; the uses of editing; the ‘auteur theory’.

  • Students will be encouraged to share analytical and critical views on the texts ascribed in class discussion, and will focus research skills in the writing of a final research paper.

  • In their papers, the students will show that they have developed the relevant skills for researching and writing on film and/or adaptation.

  • Research MA students should reveal in their coursework a more nuanced understanding of the complex relationship between social formations and cultural productions by means of a more detailed and thorough theoretical/methodological framework.


The timetable is available on the Literary Studies website

Mode of instruction

  • Seminar

  • Reading/ Viewing List

Course Load

Course is 10 EC = 280 hours.

  • Lectures/ tutorials: 26 (13 X 2 hours per week)

  • Preparation tutorials/ viewing the films: 35

  • Study of compulsory literature (primary and secondary), to be discussed in class: 99

  • Assignment (s): 120

Assessment method

Two essays of 2500-3000 words (50% each); or, one longer essay on a comparative subject (dealing with at least two texts/films featured on the syllabus) of 4000-5000 words (100%). Both essays must contain a significant element of research. Research MA students will have to write an extra 3000 word paper on a topic to be decided in consultation with the tutor.

All essays will be expected on a date (to be announced) during the exam period. Late essays will be graded, but will not receive any comments.


The final mark for the course is established by the mark of the longer essay, or by determining the weighted average of the two shorter essays. Note that both the shorter essays must be sufficient (6.0 or higher)!


See above


In case of an insufficient essay, the essay shas to be revised/ rewritten.

Exam review

Each essay will be assessesed according to a form which will explain the final mark. Students will receive this form, and can request a review within 30 days after publication of the exam results.


Blackboard will be used for providin students with additional information/reading material.

Reading list

DVD/ Blu Ray editions of the following Kubrick films: Paths of Glory; Lolita; Dr Strangelove; 2001: A Space Odyssey; A Clockwork Orange; Barry Lyndon; The Shining; Full Metal Jacket; Eyes Wide Shut.
-Vladimir Nabokov, Lolita (Penguin)
-Anthony Burgess, A Clockwork Orange (Penguin)
-William M. Thackeray, Barry Lyndon (Oxford World’s Classics)
-Arthur Schnitzler, Dream Story (Penguin)


Enrolment through uSis for classes, exams and final paper for classes, exams and final papers is mandatory.
General information about uSis is available in English and Dutch

When registering students of the MA Literary studies take priority. The deadline for registration is August 15. All other students should contact the coordinator of studies: Jurjen Donkers.

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Not applicable

Contact details

For questions about the content of the course, you can contact the teacher: dhr. Prof.dr. P. Liebregts.

Literary Studies departmental office

Coordinator of studies: Mr. J. Donkers, MA