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During one class session, I make use of a clip from Peter Jackson’s first installment of histrilogy, which features the riddling-game between Gollum and Bilbo. This gives me the opportunity to note major differences between Tolkien’s book and Jackson’s films, a process that must be repeated when we arrive at When considering Tolkien as philologist and mythologist, we take seriously Tolkien’s claim that he created Middle-earth as a place for his invented languages and that his stories grew out of the languages he made up. Tolkien’s philology and mythology are, of course, related.
Students are assigned to six small groups; they must generate discussion questions for Books I, II, III, IV, V, and VI of Tolkien’s epic, one set of questions for each day that we discuss LOTR.
These questions are shared online with all students before the class period in which they are to be discussed.
is designed to point students to resources dealing with the works of the Gawain-Poet available through the Gumberg Library (and beyond).
The "Gawain-Poet" is the name scholars have given to the anonymous poet who wrote the Middle English masterpiece . ), the poem known as "Pearl," and so some scholars call this author the Pearl-Poet.
Students choose their project based upon their own preferences, which usually relate to their emphasis in the English major, either literature or creative writing. Tolkien” students were taking my course “History and Structure of the English Language” (HSEL) concurrently, we studied the historical development of the discipline of philology in the nineteenth-century.
When considering Tolkien as a fairy-story writer, we read Tolkien’s essay, “On Fairy-Stories” before reading , which, although originally marketed to children, looks generically very much like a medieval episodic quest. We learned of the creation of the “tree of languages” chart / metaphor, which is one way of representing how modern languages are descended from originary languages (or perhaps one “ur”-language) and are related to one another in language families. This helped students in my “Mythology” course to see how Tolkien thought about languages and how he developed his own.To learn how to access electronic books, Pearl (Middle English poem) Patience (Middle English poem) Purity (Middle English Poem) - Also known as "Cleanness" Sir Gawain and the Green Knight Alliteration Arthurian romances - History and criticism Courtly love in literature English poetry - Middle English, 1100-1500 - History and criticism Erkenwald, St.Gawain (Legendary character) Knights and knighthood in literature Manuscripts, English (Middle) n this box you will find introductory books, companions, and encyclopedias to provide you with basic information on the Gawain-Poet, his times, and each of his works. Both of these collections of resources can be accessed off-campus, but you will have to enter your Multipass username and password word in order to use them. In this box the journal databases that are best for the study of the Gawain-Poet and his works are highlighted. They all said: “This tower is most interesting.” But they also said (after pushing it over): “What a muddle it is in!” And even the man’s own descendants, who might have been expected to consider what he had been about, were heard to murmur: “He is such an odd fellow! Today, many English professors use his texts to teach medieval poetry in survey courses of British literature and medieval literature – and when teaching the works of Tolkien himself. Recently, I had the pleasure of teaching an author course, “The Mythology of J. For my students and me, this learning experience led to new understanding about the influence of medieval literature on Tolkien’s fertile imagination. Specifically, his ideas about fantasy, recovery, escape, consolation, and eucatastrophe, expressed in his essay “On Fairy-Stories,” appear to be concepts he derived in part from his reading of medieval poetry and later developed in his own works of fantasy literature. Tolkien,” then consider approaches to teaching Tolkien’s three modern English verse translations of Middle English poetry. As this is an author course in the English major, I explain that biographical criticism will be used to help us understand and interpret Tolkien’s corpus of literature and that we must understand Tolkien’s life well in order to understand its relationship to his fiction. Tolkien, the medievalist who became the father of modern fantasy literature, translated many poems out of Old English, Old Norse and Middle English into carefully versified modern English. Tolkien,” as an upper division seminar for English majors at a private, Christian liberal arts college, and in it, teaching three of Tolkien’s translations of medieval poems in relationship to Tolkien’s legendarium: . Tolkien and how it shaped his mythology, 2) to read the major works of J. , rather than Humphrey Carpenter’s standard biography, because Garth emphasizes Tolkien’s youthful friendships and experiences in World War I, which provide particularly meaningful contexts for interpreting Tolkien’s epic, .While Eru-Iluvatar bears a striking resemblance to the Creator-God of Judeo-Christian belief, the Valar of Middle-earth have characteristics from Mediterranean and Scandinavian mythologies.It is interesting to recognize that the pantheon of Middle-earth emerges from Tolkien’s imagination whereas Greco-Roman and Norse mythologies emerge from ancient religious beliefs and practices of specific cultures.I assign a series of papers, of increasing complexity, to verify student understanding of our studies together.The course culminates in a final presentation and a critical or creative project, which may be a research paper, a series of poems imitative of Tolkien’s own forms (an alliterative poem, a riddle poem, a prose-poem allegory, a lay, a strictly metered and rhymed narrativepoem [either romance or elegy], a bestiary poem, a narrative, descriptive or nursery-rhyme styled poem about Faery-land, and a free-choice poem), or a piece of fan-fiction: a short-story set in Middle-earth.