Date of Award

Spring 5-11-2012

Degree Type

Honors College Thesis



First Advisor

Charles Sumner

Advisor Department



This study examines three male protagonists from films by Stanley Kubrick, and the original literary texts, with specific focus on the social influence of each character’s sense of masculinity. Much has been written about literature and film as a social critique, but there is a particular need for study through Kubrick’s lens. The original literary texts are Lolita, A Clockwork Orange, and The Shining. By considering the historical context of both the novel and its adaptation, it is possible to provide an indication of each protagonist’s effect on social constructions of manhood. It is also necessary to note the contrasts between the adaptation and the literary source in an effort to grasp any potential socially constructed ideas of masculinity Kubrick may have been trying to convey. Given that postmodern social constructions are, arguably, different than when these novels and films were originally crafted, it is imperative to consider how these texts’ thematic approaches to (or critique of) masculinity offer social impact today.