essays on Tolkien's poetry

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essays on Tolkien's poetry

Postby jediracer » Thu Oct 01, 2015 9:15 am

Hi all,

I'm wondering if anyone can recommend any books that include critical examinations of the poetry within Tolkien's works, specifically The Hobbit? Thanks for your help.
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Re: essays on Tolkien's poetry

Postby White Shadow » Thu Oct 01, 2015 12:14 pm

Hello, jediracer, and welcome to TORC.

I'm just moving this thread into the Book forum, as more people will see it and are likely to be able to answer your question. :)

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Re: essays on Tolkien's poetry

Postby jediracer » Fri Dec 11, 2015 1:23 pm

bump?
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Re: essays on Tolkien's poetry

Postby scirocco » Mon Dec 14, 2015 2:44 am

Tom Shippey's Author of the Century touches on some of the poems in the chapter on the Hobbit.

But other than the names of the dwarves and perhaps some of the riddles you would be struggling to find much to critically analyse. It's a children's book, written primarily to amuse and entertain, and it's getting a bit pretentious to look for too much deep and meaningful.
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Re: essays on Tolkien's poetry

Postby wilko185 » Mon Dec 14, 2015 2:24 pm

The Riddles of the Hobbit by Adam Roberts (review) has some thought-provoking analyses of not just the riddle game itself, but of many other verses and motifs. However, this is not an evaluation of Tolkien's verses as poetry, it is all about the hidden meanings, word-play, and references.
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Re: essays on Tolkien's poetry

Postby Big_Jim_Dwyer » Thu Dec 17, 2015 12:30 pm

In Exploring J. R. R. Tolkien's The Hobbit, Corey Olsen analyzes each of the poems. I remember the comparison of the Rivendell elves' song to the goblins' songs being particularly well done.
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Re: essays on Tolkien's poetry

Postby Morwenna » Thu Dec 17, 2015 3:47 pm

Mark Atherton's There and Back Again: J.R.R. Tolkien and the Origins of The Hobbit talks about the poetry here and there throughout the book.
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Re: essays on Tolkien's poetry

Postby jediracer » Thu Sep 15, 2016 11:33 am

Thanks everyone for the suggestions.

I'm pleased to announce that Critical Insights: The Hobbit from Salem Press is now available, and it includes my essay, "Poems and Songs of The Hobbit"

Here's a recent article/blog post I wrote about my essay: https://authordavidwiley.wordpress.com/2016/08/29/tolkiens-poetry-in-the-hobbit/

Here's the ToC of the book:

Table of Contents

Introduction

Stephen W. Potts: The Portal to Middle-earth

Context

Kelly Orazi: J. R. R. Tolkien’s World: Cultural and Historical Influences on Middle-earth’s Subcreator

Alicia Fox-Lenz: An Unexpected Success: The Hobbit and the Critics

Jason Fisher: The Riddle and the Cup: Germanic Medieval Sources and Analogues in The Hobbit

John Rosegrant: Bilbo Baggins, Harry Potter, and the Fate of Enchantment

Critical Views

Hannah Parry: “Of Gold and an Alloy”: Tolkien, The Hobbit, and Northern Heroic Spirit

Jared Lobdell: “Witness Those Rings and Roundelays”: Catholicism and Faërie in The Hobbit

Kris Swank: Fairy-stories that Fueled The Hobbit

Josh Brown: Poems and Songs of The Hobbit

Sara Waldorf: A Turning Point: The Effect of The Hobbit on Middle-earth

Jelena Borojević: The Hobbit: A Mythopoeic Need for Adventure

Kayla Shaw: Growing Up Tolkien: Finding our way through Mirkwood

Aurélie Brémont: How to slay a dragon when you are only three feet tall

M. Lee Alexander: Tolkien and the Illustrators
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