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Old 01-14-2011, 04:22 AM   #76
GreenMonkey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Belfaborac View Post
Actually he denied all of those in at least one published interview and never said anything later to retract or contradict it. I can't remember where or by whom it was published, it being a good 25 years since I read it, but I remember the denial quite well.



I don't think this is correct at all. Tolkien lamented the fact that England, unlike Ireland, Wales and (to a lesser degree) Scotland, lacked a national mythology and it was this that he sought to (sort of) amend. In his search for inspiration he went in particular to Norse mythology and the Finnish Kalevala, which influences are very clear througout his works to anyone familiar with them. Neither, obviously, is Christian, but like all religions and mythologies they contain the themes of light vs dark, etc, etc. Because the theme can be so easily attributed to Christianity, Christians have attempted to claim LotR et al for their side for decades, but in fact there is no basis at all for doing so. Quite simply, all the evidence is to the contrary.
Yes. To all of this. LOTR is NOT CHRISTIAN ALLEGORY and is not overt Christian symobolism. Gandalf is not an allegory for Christ, for example. Tolkien wasn't a fan of that kind of writing. Sure, he was a Catholic, and that surely influenced his character and his writing, but he wasn't writing any sort of Christian allegory.

http://kirjasto.sci.fi/tolkien.htm

Quote:
Although critics have seen in The Lord of the Rings allegoric allusions to World War II, Tolkien repeatedly rejected all this kind of explanations. "'The Lord of the Rings' is of course a fundamentally religious and Catholic work; unconsciously so at first, but consciously in the revision," Tolkien wrote in a letter in 1953 to Robert Murray, a Jesuit priest. "That is why I have not put in, or have cut out practically all references to anything like 'religion,' to cults or practices, in the imaginary world. For the religious element is absorbed into the story and symbolism." (The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, 1981) Tolkien's Catholicism does not appear overtly in the book. Biblical use of language, on the other hand, gives the work archaic flavor. In his forword to the work Tolkien expressed his dislike of allegory: "As for any inner meaning or 'message', it has in the intention of the author none. It is neither allegorical nor topical... It was written long before the foreshadow of 1939 had yet become a threat of inevitable disaster, and from that point the story would have developed along essentially the same lines, if that disaster had been averted."

Last edited by GreenMonkey; 01-14-2011 at 04:24 AM.
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