LotR (was Re: reviews (but not of MC))
Belben, Philip ( Generation )
Philip.Belben at eme.co.uk
Thu Dec 11 05:18:24 EST 2003
Minnow, quoting Charlie:
>>[Tolkien's Middle Earth, as he saw it] "was not a name of a
>>without relation to the world we live in... The theatre of my tale is
>>Earth, the one in which we now live, but the historical period is
>>This quotation intrigues me. What does it boil down to? I'd have
>>there are quite a few other imaginary elements there than just the
>>historical period (elves, dwarves, ents, etc etc). And the continent
>>it's set bears no obvious relation to any I know.
>>I'd like to think that Tolkien was making a more interesting point
>>the themes of LotR are relevant to our own lives, but I can't see how
>>to parse it.
> He wasn't making a point at all, just telling the story he had in him
> tell, is the way I read it: that it happens to include such things as
> trying to behave well rather than badly (if you are a hobbit, trying
> brave and do the job you have been landed with, for instance) may if
> chooses be taken as a Moral Message, but Tolkien was pretty firmly
> determined that he Had Not Written An Allegory, and I'm prepared to
> his word for it that such was not his intent. Why should he be deemed
Hang on, Minnow! To what actual act of "making a point" are you taking
Charlie to be referring when he says "making a ... point"? Here you
seem to be talking about the writing of LotR itself, which I don't think
was what Charlie meant...
> Anyhow, why is "the themes of LotR are relevant to our own lives"
... and here you are referring to the remark quoted in the Telegraph,
which _is_ what I took Charlie to mean.
The answer to your little question is: That is a property of all good
fiction [*], so it's not particularly interesting to find that it
applies to a particular work of (good) fiction!
Now the subject of _which_ themes are relevant, and how, would be
interesting, but that is not what Charlie, or JRRT, were talking about,
as far as I can see.
[*] A dangerous generalisation, but I'll let it stand and see what
happens to it...
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