This book provides an in-depth examination and analysis of the film and television adaptations of Lope de Vega’s theatrical dramas that have appeared on Spanish screens since the mid-twentieth century. Using a multidisciplinary approach, Allen draws on critical media literacy studies, film and adaptation studies, literary theory, cultural studies, and cultural historiography in his analysis. Allen argues that, given the problematic reception of Lope’s works in Francoist Spain, the canonical author never held a privileged position in the dictatorial propaganda machine. In fact, adaptations of Lope’s theater productions were subject to the same rigorous scrutiny, if not more, than any other screenplays that landed under censorship’s microscope. Allen analyzes adaptations produced during and after the nearly forty-year dictatorship and questions whether the adaptors of the democratic era created films and television shows that can sufficiently demonstrate how the spirit of Lope’s life and works can resonate with modern audiences. Scholars of film and television studies, adaptation studies, and history will find this book particularly useful.
Philip Allen is assistant professor of Spanish at Midwestern State University in Texas.
Introduction: Out of the Ashes: Lope de Vega and Modern Media
Chapter 1: Unlucky Stars: The Dictatorship’s Forbidden Films
Chapter 2: Despots and Dictators: Lope on TV and Film During the Dictatorship (1949-1975)
Chapter 3: Lope’s Leading Ladies: Adaptations for the Democratic Era (1976-2020)
Chapter 4: The Phoenix Regenerated (1935-2018)
Conclusions: The Shadow of the Phoenix
"Dr. Philip Allen provides a much needed transhistorical examination of Lope de Vega’s oeuvre and persona in other popular ’stages’ such as the filmic and televisual mediums. Allen's monograph corrects superannuated misconceptions about the reception of Lope’s life and work in contemporary times, filling important gaps in the disciplines of visual and cultural studies in relation to Peninsular early modern drama."
"This book offers a ground-breaking and original perspective of the cultural reception on television and film of one of Spain's most remarkable authors. Supported by extensive archival research, it focuses on the ideological aspects behind the adaptations of Lope de Vega's life and works and it challenges and dismantles stereotypes associated with the author and his plays in modern times".
"Lope de Vega on Spanish Screens, 1935-2020 presents a renewal of Lope de Vega studies within the twentieth and twenty-first century. Allen shows the importance of Lope adaptations and bipics to Spain’s political and historical national identity(ies). He dives deep into his archival work and paints a full picture of Lope de Vega’s adaptations and depictions in modernity. His vast knowledge and astute interpretations of (post-)Franco-era highlights the thought process behind dictatorship and democratic artistic productions."