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The Lord of the Rings

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I am a bit astonished to find no dedicated thread for The Lord of the Rings in the literature section. Hope I am wrong about that, but...

Anyhow, *spoilers.*

I've been listening to LOTR on tape during my long commutes, and I was struck as I always am by the beauty of Tolkein's prose. He is such an underrated stylist. I just finished the end of The Two Towers, and I had never noticed before that Sam, overhearing the Orcs say Frodo was alive says to himself words to the effect of "You knew in your heart he wasn't dead...why do you listen to your head, it's not the best part of you." 

I think I've mentioned this elsewhere, but I may be conflating things I've said in these forums with things I've said teaching, but I find it really rare in post-Romantic literature, particularly Christian (or sermons) to find characters or works that choose the heart in the head vs. heart conflict of ontology. If I had a dime for every sermon I've heard about how "the heart is deceitfully wicked..." well, I could probably buy a taco anyway. But I don't know that, outside of Ben Franklin (who does so humorously) I can think of a lot of venerated examples where people say, "You know, in fallen human beings, the intellect is also corrupted and can be deceitfully wicked..." If anyone represents head knowledge to the exclusion of heart knowledge, it would probably not be Boromir (or Saruman) or Denethor. Perhaps some of this is the post-WWII context (though I know Tolkein allegedly hated attempts to allegorize the book on those terms), where reason did seem to lead to despair. 

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Links to our threads on the theatrical versions of The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (Aug-Sep 2003), The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (Sep 2003 - Dec 2012) and the trilogy as a whole (Dec 2003 - present). 

Links to our threads on the extended editions of The Fellowship of the Ring (Aug 2003 - Jan 2012), The Two Towers (Nov-Dec 2003), The Return of the King (Mar 2004 - Dec 2015) and the trilogy as a whole (Feb 2005 - Jun 2006), plus our threads-with-polls on which extended editions are our favorites (Dec 2004) and which extended editions we would rank first (Dec 2004 - Apr 2015).

Link to our thread on the "limited edition" DVDs (Jun-Nov 2006). 

Links to our threads on The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (Jul 2004 - present), The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (May 2011 - Dec 2014) and The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (Jul 2012 - Aug 2015).

Link to our thread on the Amazon TV series (in development).

Links to our more thematic threads on 'Religious imagery in LotR page to screen' (Aug 2003), 'GANDALF THE GrAY' (Oct 2003 - Oct 2009), 'God in Lord of the Rings type books' (Nov 2003 - Apr 2004), 'anyone got a LOTR electronic press kit / lots of photos?' (Dec 2003), 'McKellen: No Source of Morality in Hobbiton?' (Dec 2003), 'Re-reading LOTR in light of the films, Who do you see in your mind?' (Nov 2005), 'Favorite lines: LOTR & Narnia books, nominate yours! (Nov-Dec 2005).

Links to our threads on spin-offs and spoofs like 'Howard Shore conducts LOTR symphony!' (Jul 2004) and 'Lord of the Rings by George Lucas' (Oct 2006).

Links to our 'Literature' threads on 'Lord of the Rings: Real Tales' (Aug 2003) and 'The Hobbit - Illustrated by Maurice Sendak' (Mar 2011).

Links to our threads on such technically unrelated projects as the animated versions of The Hobbit (1966) and The Lord of the Rings (1978), the documentary Ringers: Lord Of The Fans (2005) and the stage production The Lord of the Rings: The Musical (2006-2007).

Links to our threads on the in-development biopics Middle Earth, Tolkien and  Tolkien & Lewis. 

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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Thank you, Peter. I know you are something joshed for the "ahems" but this does help confirm that we don't have a Literature thread yet and can help anyone in this thread recall where the various pieces are without wading through the search engines.


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