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21 Jan, 2022
2022-1-21 3:36:05 PM UTC
northman, yes, that's a completely valid reaction, as well. One may not find particular readings to one's liking or even remotely intriguing, yet the fact that these readings are being expressed of Tolkien's works is a sign that people have graduated to treating his books just as they treat other books. In reception criticism, or postmodern criticism generally, the idea of 'merit' is less important than the personal reaction to the works. If we take a step back, we see people now expressing their reactions to his works in the same ways that they express their reactions to James Joyce, Lawrence Durrell, Paul Bowles, or any other writer of modern fiction; whether we personally share those reactions or not isn't germane. It's enough to delight in the fact that people are reading him not as escapist fiction, but as literature.
21 Jan, 2022
2022-1-21 3:38:10 PM UTC

Aelfwine wrote:

Any book that engages both the Nicomachean Ethics and the Summa Theologica isn't likely to be a puff piece.

Not sure that that follows. My undergrads (and some of my colleagues) have had no trouble producing analyses that combine rigorous theoretical frameworks with virtually no substance.

For my part, I tend to try to steer my students away from this sort of “lens first ask questions later” (i.e., pick a lens THEN view the work) mentality, which as noted by someone else above (less pessimistically) is a general trend in literary analysis, and, I suspect, is the root cause underlying many of the complaints expressed in this thread about the direction that Tolkien analysis has been taking.
21 Jan, 2022
2022-1-21 3:54:57 PM UTC
The opening to this review seems relevant here, expressing some of the same lack of “patience with poor scholarship” mentioned by others (though, NB, independent of my own views expressed above and by no means necessarily applied to this particular book).
21 Jan, 2022
2022-1-21 3:54:59 PM UTC
There’s a lot of strong opinions on this thread! If anyone would be willing to write a review of the actual book here, I can probably arrange to get a review copy (digital) from the publisher. Send me a PM or reply below and I’ll see what I can do.
22 Jan, 2022
2022-1-22 2:53:17 AM UTC

Trotter wrote:

I thought it would be difficult to beat the 'blurb' on the 1942 Foyles Hobbit in giving away nothing about the book or the author, but having recently got a copy of "Attacks of Taste" it is a clear winner on the dust-jacket 'blurb'.

For anyone not familiar with the blurb Trotter is alluding to..

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22 Jan, 2022
2022-1-22 3:56:33 AM UTC
I thought it might be helpful to put the actual book blurb here, as this thread ended up mostly commenting on the author blog post that was associated with the announcement.

The Lord of The Rings, by J. R. R. Tolkien, involves many characters with a common goal: the destruction of the Ring of Power. They connect with each other through their individual journeys and become friends.

This book analyses how friendship in Tolkien’s seminal work collaborates in the development of the characters, as well as contributing to the success of their final goal.

Using Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics and Thomas Aquinas’ Summa Theologica as a reading lens for Tolkien’s book, the work also considers Peter Jackson’s movie adaptations and their reading of the connection between the characters. Cristina Casagrande’s comparative analysis brings together different elements to the study of friendship in Tolkien’s narrative, contributing to the development of the reader’s and viewer’s own ethical thinking and character.

The publisher is kindly sending me a couple of review copies (physical ones, couldn't get digital). I've got one earmarked for a reviewer and will forward on. Anyone else willing?
26 Feb, 2022 (edited)
2022-2-26 4:50:03 PM UTC
Join us for the Premiere launch of “Friendship in ‘The Lord of the Rings’’”, on Luna Press YouTube channel

The video will be live-streamed on March 3rd. ... EYEoao8bKrKFMpIPN1ys2LTYw

4 Mar, 2022
2022-3-4 10:08:06 AM UTC
Breakdown of the video:

00:00 Hellos!
01:10 Introducing Cristina Casagrande
02:00 Cristina's interest in Tolkien. How did it start?
05:24 Tolkien scholarship in Brazil
13:45 The origin of the book
19:08 Using Aristotle and Thomas Aquinas for your research
22:57 On the challenges of writing and the power of friendship
27:46 Martin Claret and the Portuguese edition of the book
30:05 Jay Johnstone's Artwork: The Days of the King
33:30 The future of Tolkien's scholarship
34:50 One for the road
22 Jan, 2023
2023-1-22 2:42:03 PM UTC
Brazilian edition:

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22 Jan, 2023
2023-1-22 2:49:39 PM UTC

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