LotR (was Re: reviews (but not of MC))

Otter Perry ottertee at silverwinggraphics.com
Fri Dec 12 14:31:40 EST 2003


On Friday, December 12, 2003, at 10:41 AM, Robyn Starkey wrote:

> Not to harp, but why is authorial intention a conclusive 
> argument-ender to this discussion? I know Tolkien said the book wasn't 
> an allegory, but it is damn easy to read as one. There seems to be 
> some space here for debate: just because Tolkien made these 
> pronouncements doesn't mean he's *right*.

I think that an allegory has to be intentional.

I'm not saying that an author's intention affects whether a work can be 
_interpreted_
as an allegory.  In a way, _anything_ can be interpreted as an allegory.

But if the author says she or he didn't write one, then she or he 
didn't write one.

[Melville was astonished when Hawthorne commented on what an amazing
  allegory _Moby-Dick_ was.]

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