Which is the best example of an adaptation? a) a Pulitzer Prize-winning newspaper article b) a biography of the President of the United States c) a musical based on the life of a popular band d) a poem written by a best-selling playwright

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An "adaptation" is, by dictionary definition, "a movie, television drama, or stage play that has been adapted from a written work, typically a novel." Answer C, "a musical based on the life of a popular band," meets the definition of an adaptation. 

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An "adaptation" is, by dictionary definition, "a movie, television drama, or stage play that has been adapted from a written work, typically a novel." Answer C, "a musical based on the life of a popular band," meets the definition of an adaptation. 

A Pulitzer Prize-winning newspaper article and a poem written by a best-selling playwright are similar in that they both use indirect techniques (Pulitzer Prize-winning and best-selling) to distract from the correct answer. An adaptation has nothing to do with commercial success or critical acclaim; anyone, regardless of skill, can write an adaptation of any written work. An adaptation will not necessarily be successful, even if the original work on which the adaptation was based is well-known and successful. 

Biographies and autobiographies don't meet the criteria—meaning B is not the answer—because a biography, though a written work, is an account of someone else's life. It is possible, of course, to write an adaptation based on a biography, but the biography must exist first.

For someone learning about adaptations, it's possible for all four answers to be considered somewhat likely upon first glance. By using the definition of an adaptation and eliminating those choices that contradict the definition, however, we are left with only one possible answer: C, a musical based on the life of a popular band.

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