Welcome to the about page for the Adaptation and Appropriation Database. The purpose of the project is to create a Wiki that can help map the relationships that exist among adaptations, original works, and adaptation scholarship, as well as to create dynamic metadata to understand those relationships.
Our project seeks to solve several critical problems in adaptation scholarship. Many major and minor authors have been adapted and appropriated extensively within both “high” literary and popular culture contexts. These adapted texts have generated a significant amount of literary scholarship that examines their relationship to and place within the canonical works produced by Blake. Currently the scholarship and awareness of the adaptations is dispersed throughout a wide array of sources, including books, indexes, encyclopedia articles, and websites. Such fragmentation makes it difficult for researchers to create bibliographies and understand the scope of the knowledge available about those adaptations.
This wiki captures bibliographic information about original works, various adaptations of those works, and the available online resources that can help readers understand the adaptations in context--and, significantly, all within a centralized digital space. By utilizing a Semantic MediaWiki platform, which allows us to use semantic metadata to generate and understand the relationships among all the collected bibliographic metadata, our resource will allow users to create bibliographic lists based on the needs of their specific projects. This will allow greater understanding of the types of content and the relationships created by adaptation techniques, thematic concerns, and source texts.
Early topical focus
The project currently is an Alpha-stage of a potentially very large and ambitious project. Therefore, we have chosen to start the project with a particular topical focus: capturing resources related to three of William Blake’s most frequently adapted works: “The Tyger,” “The Prelude to Jerusalem,” and “The Marriage of Heaven and Hell.” These works have both the greatest number of adaptations and the larger body of scholarship discussing those adaptations. Using these foundational texts will allow us to test our resource’s infrastructure and to create lists that reveal the relationships among the bibliographic information. Furthermore, the specific structure of our resource will allow us classify the adaptations within a structured hierarchy, ranging from full-text, high-fidelity adaptations to small-scale allusions. In doing so, our project contributes to the scholarly conversation about adaptation theory, especially by showcasing a digital medium that can archive and organize adaptations scholarship and reveal more complex sets of relationships among such scholarship.
This first stage of the project is largely bibliographic but has the potential to create additional encyclopedic or annotated discussions of both the adaptations and the scholarship treating the adaptations. MediaWiki offers a suitable environment for doing this because it allows users to add additional elements to pages dynamically. Second, scholarship about Blake adaptations is extensive and there are plenty of opportunities for researching and indexing those topical areas. Third, beyond adaptations of Blake, scholarship in adaptation generally isn’t readily available in a central structured environment. By creating a robust platform that is built for collaboration and handling several users in dispersed environments (which is the central advantage of MediaWiki as a content management system), scholars or students at multiple institutions can collaborate in finding scholarship about adaptation and reviewing it as part of the bibliography.
Information structure and templates
The project is designed to capture a number of different types of bibliographic information alongside more extensive theoretical relationships created between different types of adaptations. So as not to recreate the wheel, many of the templates and information structures have been adapted from the related Referata Wiki, Wikipapers: http://wikipapers.referata.com/wiki/Main_Page .