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Re: PJ-The Socialists Chime in

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  • Elizabeth R. Milner
    I don t remember the conversation shifting in the way you say. Certainly nobody suggested that Tolkien was any kind of fellow traveller, unconsious or no. As
    Message 1 of 42 , Feb 4, 2004
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      I don't remember the conversation shifting in the way you say.
      Certainly nobody suggested that Tolkien was any kind of fellow
      traveller, unconsious or no. As far as separating the pastoral and
      the political, I first learned of Morris through EP Thompson's
      Biography, so it's very hard to get my mind around the idea that they
      are not irrevocably intertwined in Morris' work.

      --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, David Bratman <dbratman@e...> wrote:
      > At 07:15 PM 2/2/2004 +0000, Elizabeth R. Milner wrote:
      > >I think the discussion started with the question of why the
      > >Socialists would look so kindly on Tolkien, not vice versa.
      >
      > Whatever. That's not where the discussion is now.
      >
      >
      > >I think
      > >the William Morris connection is part of the explanation.
      >
      > If so, they've been seriously misled. To say Tolkien's pastoral
      sympathies
      > overlapped with Morris's and were partly inspired by his, and that
      the
      > socialists may share some of these with both of them - that's one
      thing,
      > and emphasizes the tenuousness of the connection and that this is
      just one
      > area of overlap of diverse minds. But to say, or even imply, that
      Tolkien
      > was a student of Morris's thought and that Morris's medievalist
      thought was
      > necessarily socialist and that therefore Tolkien, even
      unconsciously, was a
      > socialist fellow-traveler and is therefore of sympathetic interest
      to
      > socialists, insults Morris, Tolkien, and socalists alike.
      >
      >
      > >Separating
      > >the pastoral from the political is a bit hard to do when dealing
      with
      > >Morris.
      >
      > Actually, with Morris it's remarkably easy. As I said, these two
      areas
      > were connected in his mind; but they're not at all contingent on
      each
      > other. A reader of his romances alone could not determine his
      political
      > views, and most such readers aren't even interested; while a
      complete
      > perplexity at his medievalism seems de rigeur among students of his
      > socialist principles. Check the books on Morris from a socialist
      > perspective: they have essentially nothing to say about the massive
      > fiction-writing projects that obsessed his final years.
      >
      > - David Bratman
    • dianejoy@earthlink.net
      I *hated* the film *First Knight*: it practically blessed Lance and Gwen s affair, even from Arthur s deathbed. Gwen will eternally be a blonde for me; a
      Message 42 of 42 , Feb 5, 2004
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        I *hated* the film *First Knight*: it practically blessed Lance and Gwen's
        affair, even from Arthur's deathbed. Gwen will eternally be a blonde for
        me; a brunette Gwen is dubious to me, though it's likely she could be one
        if she's Celtic (depends on your favorite sources); lots of dark haired
        folk. Why does Connery appear in so many dreadful films? O;) ---djb

        Original Message:
        -----------------
        From: David Bratman dbratman@...
        Date: Sat, 31 Jan 2004 22:54:28 -0800
        To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: Re: [mythsoc] Awards, deserved and undeserved


        At 01:18 AM 2/1/2004 -0500, Grace wrote:
        >In a message dated 1/31/2004 5:52:43 PM Central Standard Time,
        >dbratman@... writes:
        >The Tolkien Ensemble's music is very evocative of the book: so much so, in
        >fact, that it would be badly suited for Jackson's films, which is evocative
        >of something else altogether.
        >True, true. But at least it would have given me something to enjoy while I
        >was hideously bored for three precious hours that were wasted, never to be
        >recovered. :-)

        Why not just wear a headset to the theatre and get a more pleasant
        soundtrack for the whole thing, not just the music? It's not like very
        much in the plot would be a surprise, and that which was a surprise you'd
        be better off not knowing.

        Only one film I've ever watched all the way through was so bad I felt like
        demanding a refund, not of my money, but of the time it sucked out of my
        life. This was "First Knight", an Arthurian fluff utterly unredeemed by
        the presence of Sean Connery, John Gielgud, and even Alexis Denisof.

        - David Bratman


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