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J.R.R. Tolkien Presentation

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Hibah Shafi

on 7 March 2013

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Transcript of J.R.R. Tolkien Presentation

Biography MLA Citations J.R.R. Tolkien(John Ronald Reuel) was an English author born in 1892 in Bloemfontein, South Africa. His English-born father, Arthur Tolkien, was a bank clerk and moved to South Africa for prospects of promotion. There he met his wife, Mabel Suffield, who was not fully English. Tolkien's father died in 1896, and Tolkien's brother and mother moved to Birmingham for health reasons. His mother was diagnosed with diabetes in 1904, when she also died.
Tolkien married his wife, Edith Bratt, at a boarding house owned by Mrs. Faulkner, and married her in March of 1922. They had four children, three boys and one girl. In the mean time, Tolkien had been studying Old English and Classics at Oxford. He then became a professor at Oxford, interested in writing fiction stories in the medieval romance genre. Tolkien used his stories' settings, because he wanted to create a mythological background for England. Tolkien had also enrolled as second lieutenant during WWI, having to come home after an accident.
Tolkien published his first major work, The Hobbit, in 1937. But it was The Lord of the Rings series that had sparked his fame as an author, published in 1954-1955. He categorized his publications by taking 'Middle English' settings. His works centered around fantasy, such as gnomes, unicorns, magic, etc.
After retiring, he moved to Bournemouth in 1959 with his wife. J.R.R. Tolkien died in 1973. The Hobbit(1937)*
The Lord of the Rings series(1954-1955)*
The Silmarillion(1977)*
The Adventures of Tom Bombadil
Sir Orfeo and The Pearl
Leaf by Niggle

*major works Author's Bibliography Perhaps the most important critique of The Hobbit came from ten-year-old Raynor Unwin, the son of English publisher Sir Stanley Unwin. According to Daniel Grotta, in his biography J. R. R. Tolkien: Architect of Middle-earth, young Unwin earned between a shilling and a half-crown for reviewing children's literature. His assessment of The Hobbit is as follows:

Bilbo Baggins was a hobbit who lived in his hobbit hole and never went for adventures, at last Gandalf the wizard and his dwarves persuaded him to go. He had a very exciting time fighting goblins and Wargs. At last they got to the lonely mountain: Smaug, the dragon who guards it, is killed and after a terrific battle with the goblins he returned home—rich!
This book, with the help of maps, does not need any illustrations. It is good and should appeal to all children between the ages of 5 and 9.
Raynor Unwin said years later, "I wouldn't say my report was the best critique of The Hobbit that has been written, but it was good enough to ensure that it was published."

The Hobbit was published in 1937, and most reviewers concurred with Unwin's positive assessment. Although the book was primarily viewed as children's literature, several reviewers emphasized the book's appeal to older readers. A reviewer (believed to be C. S. Lewis) in the London Times Literary Supplement wrote, "It must be understood that this is a children's book only in the sense that the first of many readings can be undertaken in the nursery."

In the New York Times, Anne T. Eaton asserted, "Boys and girls from 8 years on have already given The Hobbit an enthusiastic welcome, but this is a book with no age limits." Because Tolkien believed that mythology and fairy tales helped bridge the gap between generations, he would have been pleased with these assessments.

Despite the excellent reviews, The Hobbit was not initially a financial success for Tolkien. However, the commercial success of The Lord of the Rings trilogy during the 1950s also affected the sales of its predecessor. Tolkien lived to see The Hobbit sell over a million copies in the United States alone. It continues to be one of the best-selling fantasy titles in print.

Tolkien's work has generated a great deal of scholarly criticism, primarily concentrating on The Lord of the Rings. Much commentary focuses on the creation, history, and languages of Middle-earth. Several authors, including Edmund Fuller, have looked for allegory (characters or events used to represent things or abstract ideas to convey a message or teach a lesson) in Tolkien's work. However, the author vehemently denied the use of allegory in his books. In his introduction to the Ballantine edition of The Lord of the Rings, he wrote:

I cordially dislike allegory in all its manifestations, and always have done so since I grew old and wary enough to detect its presence. I much prefer history, true or feigned, with its varied applicability to the reader. I think that many confuse applicability with allegory; but the one resides in the freedom of the reader, and the other in the purported domination of the author.
The Hobbit is first and foremost a grand adventure, a tale of good overcoming evil. Major Works Criticism 1892: born
1905-1911: lodged in boarding homes as an orphan
1911: pursued degree in comparative philology at Oxford University
1936/1947: published essays "Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics" and "On Fairy Stories" as professor and was part of the club "Inklings" which had included C.S. Lewis and CharlesWilliams.
1937: published "The Hobbit"
1954-1955: published "The Lord of the Rings" trilogy
1973: died
1977: "The Silmarillion" published Timeline
"African American Literature : The Black Arts Movement." Encyclopedia Britannica Online. Encyclopedia Britannica, n.d. Web. 05 Mar. 2013.

"Great Depression." International Encyclopedia of the Social Sciences. Ed. William A. Darity, Jr. 2nd ed. Vol. 3. Detroit: Macmillan Reference USA, 2008. 367-371. Gale Virtual Reference Library. Web. 5 Mar. 2013.

"Inkling Books." Inklings of Oxford. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 Mar. 2013.

"J. R. R. Tolkien: A Biographical Sketch." JRR Tolkien Biography. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 Mar. 2013.

"surrealism." Encyclopedia of the Modern World: 1900 to the Present. Ed. William R. Keylor. New York: Facts on File, 2009. 1194. Facts on File Library of World History. Gale Virtual Reference Library. Web. 5 Mar. 2013.

"The Hobbit." Novels for Students. Ed. Marie Rose Napierkowski and Deborah A. Stanley. Vol. 8. Detroit: Gale, 2000. 94-113. Gale Virtual Reference Library. Web. 4 Mar. 2013.

"Tolkien, J.R.R." Gale Contextual Encyclopedia of World Literature. Vol. 4. Detroit: Gale, 2009. 1546-1549. Gale Virtual Reference Library. Web. 4 Mar. 2013 Expanded Explanation of Three Major Events Artistic Movements of the Period Philosophical Movements of the Period The Inklings-
The Inklings were a literary discussion group at Oxford University. J.R.R. Tolkien was among many in this group, including C.S. Lewis, Charles Williams, and Hugo Dyson. This group encouraged fictional storytelling and fantasy. The group would regularly meet at a pub or one of the member's dorm rooms to discuss unfinished literary work or work in progress. This benefited J.R.R. Tolkien by surrounding himself around other similar authors to indulge in critical discussion.

The Great Depression-
Between 1929 and 1933, America's economy desperately crashed. Prices fell and the unemployment increased drastically. Bank failures in the South and West added to the economy crash. This relates back to Tolkien, suggesting he was in poverty growing up as a child. Short periods in the 1890s were also experienced, leading up to The Great Depression. Though England was also affected, Germany was heavily severed by the depression. Unemployment rates rose and banks crashed.

The Vietnam War-
During the 1970s, America was at war with Vietnam. Vietnam was seperated into 2 parts: North and South. The north side of Vietnam was communist, and the south side of Vietnam wanted democracy. The US sided with the south. Both the US and Vietnam took hostages from either side of the war. Americans back home were against the war, taking into consideration that thousands of casualities had been counted. Founded in Paris in 1924, Surrealism had been introduced to the art world. Surrealism was founded by Andre Button, created from the movements taking place during World War I. Surrealism was used to encourage the idea of aestheticism and seize artistic expression from reason and convention. Surrealism consisted of dream-like symbols and sometimes irregular images. A spark in African American history resulted in the creation of the slogan 'Black Power.' After Malcolm X's assassination, black nationalism had increased in 1965. African American's used literature and poetry to express their culture. They used music, such as Jazz and Gospel, to further show pride. The Black Arts movement founded community theaters and started their own magazines and newspapers. Authors such as Baraka and Larry Neal were strong leaders during this period of time. Organizations helped to encourage young writers.
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