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Re: [mythsoc] Types, Stereotypes and Archetypes.

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  • Darrell A. Martin
    ... Hi: I confess that my defense of stereotyping, although carefully worded, has an element of shock value as well. Make of that what one will ... I have
    Message 1 of 33 , Jan 30, 2012
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      On 1/30/2012 7:57 PM, scribbler@... wrote:
      > I like all you have to say here, Darrell - and I pretty much agree with it.
      >
      > Even down to the discussion of Aragorn. I admit that I linked him and
      > "stereotype" for shock value, and because it's quite true that a less
      > sophisticated reader would indeed consider him a stereotype.
      >
      > But I also agree that Tolkien's artistry in writing Aragorn is such that
      > you can't really leave him at the "flat generalization" level. His easy
      > comraderie when the hobbits first meet him is not the image of a sterling
      > upright hero - he's savvy, shrewed and not without dry humor. Therein lies
      > Tolkien's skill: he introduces us to Aragorn as Strider and shows us the
      > characters much more accessible qualities before we learn the real weight
      > of his destiny.
      >
      > Heh. There may be a paper topic there. But not from me at present. :D

      Hi:

      I confess that my "defense" of stereotyping, although carefully worded,
      has an element of shock value as well. Make of that what one will ...

      I have thought, since I read the Silmarillion a half dozen times in the
      year it was published, that Tolkien often does something that is in some
      ways the opposite of stereotyping. That is, he takes elements of what it
      is to be human, and assigns them to different races in Middle-earth. It
      seems similar to Ursula LeGuin's "thought experiments", a prime example
      of which is her extraordinary "Left Hand of Darkness".

      However, instead of generalizing what it is to be human as an
      experiment, Tolkien particularizes. As one example, Orcs are simply
      human beings as they would be (or as some are?) with no souls. Just like
      us but with no concept of beauty, love, or wonder; no genuine affection
      for anyone, not even themselves; no real appreciation for anything that
      is not useful for doing what Orcs want to do. Elves are simply human
      beings as we would be if our lives were completely entwined, and in
      harmony, with the world we live in. Much more connected to the life of
      that which is around them than we can ever be, immortal in a sense,
      Elves paradoxically have no known destiny -- not even hope -- beyond the
      end of Middle-earth.

      Another possible paper. Not me either. :/

      Darrell
    • Margaret Dean
      I just got an email from Kent State Press saying they d shipped mine! :) It s been backordered for ... a while now. --Margaret Dean margdean56@gmail.com On
      Message 33 of 33 , Feb 13, 2012
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        I just got an email from Kent State Press saying they'd shipped mine!  :)  It's been backordered for ... a while now.
         
         
        --Margaret Dean
        On Sun, Feb 12, 2012 at 10:13 AM, Doug Kane <dougkane@...> wrote:
         

        All,
         
        It has come to my attention that Verlyn Flieger's new book, Green Suns and Faërie: Essays on J.R.R. Tolkien is now available for purchase, both directly from the publisher, Kent State University Press, and from Amazon and other retailers.  This book was originally due to be published last August, but was delayed by the publisher.  It doesn't seem to have been well publicized that the book is now available, so I thought I would spread the word.  I obviously don't need to emphasize how perceptive Verlyn's observations about Tolkien are.  Most of you are well aware of that fact!
         
         
         
        Doug


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