: fantasy monarchies

Kathryn Andersen kat_lists at katspace.com
Tue Feb 4 15:54:49 EST 2003


On Mon, Feb 03, 2003 at 09:52:56PM -0800, Jon Noble wrote:
> pulps (Literary Darwinism?)Genre Fantasy arose through
> a divine act of Special Creation from the God JRRT,
> and the angelic Choirs of publishers and readers have
> decreed that things must remain the same, for ever and
> ever, Amen.

Oh, pu-leaze! (rolls eyes)  I am sick of this threadbare myth.
Firstly, Tolkien didn't invent fantasy.  It was around before he wrote
his work -- der, anyone hear about Arthurian Romance?  And what about
Spencer's Faerie Queene?
Secondly, I am sick and tired of Tolkien taking the blame for the
crappiness of those who came later.  You're all talking as if he
invented Feudalism, as if he invented the Quest, and so on.

Nobody actually went on a Quest in LotR -- they went on an anti-Quest.
If you have a Quest, you're off looking for some Powerful Object.  In
LotR, they already *had* the Powerful Object, and the point of their
mission was to destroy the thing.  About the only other author I can
think of who wrote something where the Powerful Object was too dangerous
to use, was Samuel R. Delaney, in "The Jewels of Aptor".

If you're going to complain about True Heirs and Quests, put the blame
where it belongs -- with King Arthur.  Not with Tolkien.

Kathryn Andersen
-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-
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