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Thank you again!


Feb 20 2013, 9:59am

Views: 153
Thank you again! [In reply to] Can't Post

In Reply To
My professor does love Tolkien. She actually mentioned this week that she was criticized by the rest of the English department when she started teaching this course almost twenty years ago, and scholars like Tom Shippey and Jane Chance (at Rice University) have helped to legitimize the study of Tolkien in academia. Any criticisms she has are simple to help us think objectively, and better read his works from a more objective academic perspective. There is nothing wrong with disagreeing, but please remember that this is not meant to rile anybody up, but instead, to simply share what I've been taking notes on. (similarly, these notes aren't necessarily my opinion, or even that of my professor, but simply reflective of discussions in class)

But of course! I never thought otherwise. I'm sorry you had the impression that some members were getting riled up, and I hope I wasn't one of those giving the impression.

In Reply To
We do talk about Tolkien's own personal/professional life as well as some philological history, but I have decided not to post stuff about that on here, simply because it's stuff that anybody can look up whenever they want. I thought the discussions we have in class, and some of my professors own opinions, might be more interesting, just because it seems like it would be slightly more original on here, and spark more conversation, than a simple history of Tolkien in which I list facts that I learn. If anybody has any alternative ideas, please let me know!

Anybody could look up - but most won't unless prompted.
Anyway, it's you choice what to post - and so far, you've been doing excellently.

And now to your questions:

1. Bilbo.
I'm not sure about the tobacco as a proof - after all, Bilbo was first hooked on by admiring Thorin and Gandalf's smoke-rings.
However, the very last sentence of The Return Journey indicates that at the end of the adventure, the Baggins side is becoming stronger. Tolkien makes sure we are always aware of these two facets of Bilbo's person - but does he achieve a balance indeed? He prospers, and is happy - but I'm not sure he achieves it.
And LotR indicates that he does not - when he feels strcehed, longs to be elsewhere, and does not marry. Compare this to Sam, who does marry, and becomes whole.

2. Beowulf, and other heroes.
I haven't read Beowulf myself, but Tolkien clearly draws on the Norse sagas quite a lot - even in the dwarves' names. From the little I know, I'm not sure Thorin in any way follows him (although perhaps movie-Thorin does). Could you, or anyone, please enlarge?

3. Thorin.
Oh, I have for a long time argued that Tolkien doesn't play fair with him. And yes, I see no reason to suppose that had Bard and the Elvenking not descended at him to plunder the Mountain (what do you think they would have done, had they found the dwarves alive and the Mountain undefended?), he would have been a fair and generous king. Maybe he wouldn't - but based on his gift to Bilbo (which ultimately saved Bilbo's life) indicates he would.

4. The dwarves as a collective character.
Why would you expect anything from a group which goes travelling in the Wild, not bothering to even arm themselves?
At any rate, it is onmly one dwarf who grumbles against returning to the Misty Mountains for Bilbo - and it was the dwarves who picked Bilbo after the Great Goblin was killed, and once the wolves attack, at considerable risk to Dori. In both cases, Gandalf completely ignores his friend and leaves him behind; not that is a disappointment in my book.

5. Aaaand...back to Bilbo.
I have discussed this at great length only recently.

Subject User Time
Tolkien notes: But Richard Armitage is *spoilers* Laerasëa Send a private message to Laerasëa Feb 18 2013, 3:45am
    I will try. silneldor Send a private message to silneldor Feb 18 2013, 8:27pm
        "Without the weight of ego"! dernwyn Send a private message to dernwyn Feb 21 2013, 3:21am
    LOL! dernwyn Send a private message to dernwyn Feb 19 2013, 2:13am
    The thread opener made me laugh :D Súlimë Send a private message to Súlimë Feb 19 2013, 8:05am
        I like that! dernwyn Send a private message to dernwyn Feb 21 2013, 3:24am
    Thank you again! sador Send a private message to sador Feb 20 2013, 9:59am
        Oh, that's right! dernwyn Send a private message to dernwyn Feb 20 2013, 11:18am


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