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Re: [mythsoc] Aragorn and kingship, and kingship elsewhere

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  • Stolzi@aol.com
    In a message dated 11/23/2002 5:44:14 PM Central Standard Time, ... I had the same thought when I read the passage. But of course fantasy was not as
    Message 1 of 29 , Nov 24, 2002
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      In a message dated 11/23/2002 5:44:14 PM Central Standard Time,
      SusanPal@... writes:


      >
      > > For this reason, he adds, readers like this are generally uninterested in
      >
      > > fantasy. The stories shd have the kind of realistic contemporary
      > > window-dressing which allows them to think "All this could happen to ME
      > > someday..."
      > >
      >
      > I'm not sure I'd agree with this statement -- a lot of "unliterary"
      > readers,
      > and writers, are interested in fantasy because it allows themselves to
      > imagine themselves as immortal elves or brave warriors or romantic maidens
      > in
      > distress. Believe me, I see a *lot* of wish-fulfillment fantasy among my
      > undergrad writing students!


      I had the same thought when I read the passage. But of course fantasy was
      not as plentifully available outside high-literature circles, when CSL wrote
      that. Remember, he and Tolkien decided "we have to write the kind of stories
      we like, because nobody else is writing them." Also, remember his defense
      of grownups enjoying children's stories, which were then one of the few
      havens of fantasy.

      It's interesting to me to see that the cheap paperback romance, which I think
      of as one of the most notable forms of wish-fulfillment fantasy, now has a
      sub-set of volumes in which there is still the everlasting girl-boy thing but
      a fantasy element is introduced as well.

      >
      > A student of mine who's been having an extremely tough semester, with tons
      > of
      > personal problems, wrote a poignant reading response to LotR in which she
      > said that reading about Frodo's impossible journey helped her maintain the
      > strength she needed for her own: it showed her that fortitude under
      > seemingly hopeless conditions was indeed possible. I find this a
      > profoundly
      > human and moving response to the book, but it seems to me that according to
      >
      > the terms here being discussed, some of you might call it "unliterary,"
      > because that student's identifying with Frodo's journey rather than
      > analyzing
      > it. Am I wrong about that? What would Lewis say about her response?

      Tolkien, perhaps, would call if "applicability." ? I think he'd be
      pleased.

      I think Lewis too wd defend it, he speaks approvingly somewhere of the
      courage which led the heroes of Norse saga to go on even when things looked
      hopeless; or being found on the right side - though the losing side - at
      Ragnarok.


      Diamond Proudbrook



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    • ERATRIANO@aol.com
      In a message dated 11/24/2002 4:00:55 PM Eastern Standard Time, ... Yes, I thought I had noticed that, but I haven t really followed up on it yet. I ve read
      Message 2 of 29 , Nov 24, 2002
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        In a message dated 11/24/2002 4:00:55 PM Eastern Standard Time,
        Stolzi@... writes:

        > It's interesting to me to see that the cheap paperback romance, which I
        > think
        > of as one of the most notable forms of wish-fulfillment fantasy, now has a
        > sub-set of volumes in which there is still the everlasting girl-boy thing
        > but
        > a fantasy element is introduced as well.
        >

        Yes, I thought I had noticed that, but I haven't really followed up on it
        yet. I've read one or two Jude Devereux (sp) titles, and I also liked some
        Andrew M. Greeley, the ones about angels, especially the one about Gabrielle.


        Course then we are getting into religion as fantasy, and that is a whole
        'nother hornet's nest.

        Lizzie


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      • SusanPal@aol.com
        In a message dated 11/24/2002 4:58:08 PM Pacific Standard Time, ... Yep. I keep trying to work on an essay on the intersections between faith and fantasy, and
        Message 3 of 29 , Nov 24, 2002
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          In a message dated 11/24/2002 4:58:08 PM Pacific Standard Time,
          ERATRIANO@... writes:


          > Course then we are getting into religion as fantasy, and that is a whole
          > 'nother hornet's nest.
          >

          Yep. I keep trying to work on an essay on the intersections between faith
          and fantasy, and it keeps getting too complicated on me! My sense is that
          imagination and intution lie at the core of both, and that both are about
          certain kinds of investment in things not seen -- and both are about
          liminality, too, about negotiating boundaries between knowledge and belief.
          But it really *is* a hornet's next, and I haven't been able to work out
          anything very coherent yet!

          And perhaps Tolkien did it as well as anyone could in "On Fairy-stories."
          "God is the Lord, of angels, and of men -- and of elves." I nearly swooned
          when I read that.

          Susan


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        • ERATRIANO@aol.com
          In a message dated 11/23/2002 1:38:37 PM Eastern Standard Time, ... BTW I found this especially interesting, although all I know about fractals is that they
          Message 4 of 29 , Nov 25, 2002
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            In a message dated 11/23/2002 1:38:37 PM Eastern Standard Time,
            tgshaw@... writes:

            > Discover* magazine (not related to the Discovery Channel, BTW) had a
            > full-length article on a study of Jackson Pollock's artwork that showed the
            > degree of fractals appearing in it is very close to what's most appealing
            > to us in nature (measured, IIRC, by showing research subjects photos of
            > natural settings--tree branches and the like--displaying fractals in
            > varying degrees). "Splash art" made randomly didn't have this quality. So
            > there may be an actual reason that some people would pay good money for a
            > Pollock, but look at my display of drips and shake their heads. I'm afraid
            > the whole process of determining the degree of fractals in something was a
            > bit beyond me--while I'm fascinated by fractals (I've been known to take a
            > great deal of time turning a head of cauliflower into crudités because I
            > spend so much time just looking at the pieces and patterns), I've never
            > understood them mathematically.

            BTW I found this especially interesting, although all I know about fractals
            is that they are some sort of math related to pretty patterns, and that they
            can be studied. lol. I bet Asimov has done some nice readable essays on
            them though. I don't really have anything to add but I wanted to thank Trudy
            for her post, it's given me food for thought. More cauliflower anytime,
            Trudy! Hey, I bet fractal study could be applied to beadwork as well.

            Lizzie


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          • WendellWag@aol.com
            In a message dated 11/25/2002 7:47:36 PM Eastern Standard Time, ... I m pretty sure he hasn t. Asimov was (as he admitted himself) pretty weak in math for
            Message 5 of 29 , Nov 25, 2002
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              In a message dated 11/25/2002 7:47:36 PM Eastern Standard Time,
              ERATRIANO@... writes:


              > I bet Asimov has done some nice readable essays on
              > them though.

              I'm pretty sure he hasn't. Asimov was (as he admitted himself) pretty weak
              in math for somebody with a Ph.D. in chemistry. He said in his autobiography
              (or maybe it was in one of his essays) that he wouldn't even pretend to
              knowledge of any math beyond first-year calculus. Besides, fractals only
              became well known fairly late in Asimov's life.

              Wendell Wagner


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            • ERATRIANO@aol.com
              In a message dated 11/25/2002 9:27:21 PM Eastern Standard Time, ... Oh, right, he s dead, isn t he? :-( My mistake. So whose should I read then? Barbara
              Message 6 of 29 , Nov 25, 2002
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                In a message dated 11/25/2002 9:27:21 PM Eastern Standard Time,
                WendellWag@... writes:

                > Besides, fractals only became well known fairly late in Asimov's life.
                >
                > Wendell Wagner

                Oh, right, he's dead, isn't he? :-( My mistake. So whose should I read
                then? Barbara Kingsolver? I'm not sure what she wrote about but I did just
                pick up a book of her essays (if that isn't an incriminating display of
                anti-logic then I'm Yu-Sai Wa Wa).

                Thank you, Wendell & sweet dreams to you tonight.

                Lizzie


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              • WendellWag@aol.com
                I don t know really. The only book I can think of offhand is _Chaos_ by James Gleick. Wendell Wagner
                Message 7 of 29 , Nov 25, 2002
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                  I don't know really. The only book I can think of offhand is _Chaos_ by
                  James Gleick.

                  Wendell Wagner
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