Sunday, 6 November 2016

Tolkien Transactions LXXIV

October 2016

There is nothing new, really. Except, perhaps, that I have managed (apparently without any permanent injury) to pass, as my children lovingly remind me, a farthing score decades …. Personally I like the slow polysyllabic distinguishedness to semicentenarian :) Tolkien obviously featured on my wish list, and my own present for myself, Jenny Dolfen's brilliant Songs of Sorrow and Hope arrived just a few days after, with more to appear at a later date. My pre-order of the second edition of Scull & Hammond's J.R.R. Tolkien Companion and Guide probably being last to arrive as it will not be released until September next.
As in other recent months, you will find quite few posts with thorough commentary, some with some small commentary, and many with no commentary at all from my part. As long as nobody interprets my silence as consent, this shouldn't be a huge problem (something with which you disagree can sometimes be more enlightening than something you just nod to).
As always, I claim nothing about newness (items dating back more than three years), completeness (but I do proudly claim incompleteness!), relevance, or any other implication of responsibility :-)

These transactions are posted on my blog, Parma-kenta (Enquiry into the books) and on the Tolkien Society web-site.

This month it has suited my purposes to sort the contents under the following headlines:
1: Beren and Lúthien
2: The Bodley Medal
3: News
4: Events
5: Essays and Scholarship
6: Commentary
7: Reviews and Book News
8: Tolkienian Artwork
9: Story Internal (Ardalogy)
10: Other Stuff
11: Rewarding Discussions
12: In Print
13: Web Sites
14: The Blog Roll
15: Sources

Leaf by Niggle V
by Riana

Beren and Lúthien

On the 18th and 19th of October, the news hit the Tolkien world that the Tolkien Estate and HarperCollins and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt publishers were going to issue a stand-alone edition of the story of Beren and Lúthien, Beren and Lúthien in May 2017. Obviously this has been widely commented and shared, and a full list of articles is both impractical and impossible. Therefore I will share only a few links, and explain what sets these apart.

Wayne G. Hammond & Christina Scull, Wednesday, 19 October 2016, ‘Beren and Lúthien
Wayne Hammond and Christina Scull were the first of the Tolkien world to comment on this, and their unrivalled Tolkien expertise along with their good relations with both the Estate and the publishers ensure that their comments are always worth reading.

John Garth, Wednesday, 19 October 2016, ‘Beren and Lúthien, a centenary publication
The recognised expert on the earliest years of Tolkien's writing career, including the writing of The Book of Lost Tales, John's musings on the possible contents of the upcoming Beren and Lúthien are highly interesting!

Nelson Goering, LotR Plaza, Thursday, 20 October 2016, ‘Beren and Lúthien: Five Questions
Philologist Nelson Goering's five-question FAQ about Beren and Lúthien is excellent, and the ensuing discussion thread makes this an even better read.

Troels Forchhammer, Wednesday, 19 October 2016, ‘On Beren and Lúthien
My own musings on the possible contents of the book (including some comments on what some of the above had said) are supplemented with a long list of references, updated as of 5 November, including many news articles of ... variable worth. The links are grouped, and the main articles should be possible to read (they include, of course, all of the articles listed above).


The Bodley Medal

Leaf by Niggle I
by Riana
Another piece of news to hit us this month was the announcement that the Bodleian Libraries have decided to award Christopher Tolkien with the Bodley Medal “for bringing his father's literary legacy to the public”. This honour is richly deserved for Christopher Tolkien's work as both scholar and editor and both my warm congratulations and sincere gratitude go out to Mr Tolkien for his great work!

The official description states that “The Bodley Medal is awarded by the University of Oxford's Bodleian Libraries to individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the worlds in which the Bodleian is active including literature, culture, science and communication.” To say that Christopher Tolkien has made an outstanding contribution seems to me a bit of an understatement, actually.


The Bodleian Libraries, Thursday, 3 November 2016, ‘Editor and Scholar Christopher Tolkien awarded Bodley Medal
Though it wasn't published until 3 November, I believe that the official announcement from the Bodleian Libraries belongs here (don't be surprised to see it again next month, though :-) ).

Natasha Onwuemezi, The Bookseller, Monday, 31 October 2016, ‘Christopher Tolkien awarded the Bodley Medal

Daniel Helen, The Tolkien Society, Monday, 31 October 2016, ‘Christopher Tolkien awarded Bodley Medal


News

Leah Schnelbach, TOR.com, Thursday, 20 October 2016, ‘Gandalf Brings Street Magic to Middle-earth!
Just for fun ...

Blackmore Vale Magazine, Thursday, 20 October 2016, ‘On This Day... it will be 61 years since The Return of the King was published

Tamlyn Jones, Birmingham Mail, Friday, 21 October 2016, ‘JRR Tolkien's childhood church added to 'At Risk' register
About parts of the Birmingham Oratory being deemed as ‘in danger’ by Historic England (a UK public body).
See also Express & Star, Monday, 24 October 2016, ‘JRR Tolkien's childhood church on 'at risk' list


Events

Reports & comments on past events
Lynn Forest-Hill, Friday, 28 October 2016, ‘Wessexmoot 2016
About the 2016 ‘Wessexmoot’ on 22 October.


Info on upcoming & on-going events (as of 1 November)
26 April 2016 – 27 February 2017, Various, Staffordshire, ‘Exhibition: J.R.R. Tolkien in Staffordshire 1915 – 1918’, The Haywood Society
Andy MacDonald, A Little Bit of Stone, Monday, 3 October 2016, ‘Exhibition celebrates Tolkien's link with Staffordshire
Lichfield Mercury , Monday, 31 October 2016, ‘A treat for fans of Lord of the Rings as JRR Tolkien exhibition heads to Lichfield

5 November 2016, Oxford, ‘Not Oxonmoot-moot’, The Tolkien Society

5 November 2016, Champaign, Illinois, USA, ‘Urbana Theological Seminary: fifth annual Tolkien conference’, Urbana Theological Seminary

10 November 2016, The British Library, London, ‘Fantastic Maps: From Winnie the Pooh to Game of Thrones’, The British Library

11 November 2016, Liverpool Hope University, ‘Tolkien Day 2016’, Liverpool Hope University

3 December 2016, The Old Contemptibles, Birmingham, ‘Yulemoot 2016’, The Tolkien Society

3 January 2017, World-wide, ‘Tolkien Birthday Toast 2017’, The Tolkien Society

11–14 May 2017, Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA, ‘International Congress on Medieval Studies (K'zoo)’, Western Michigan University, Medieval Institute

16–18 June 2017, Waddow Hall, Clitheroe, Lancashire, ‘The Middle-earth Beer & Music Festival’, The Ale House Clitheroe

3–6 July 2017, Leeds, ‘International Medieval Congress’, University of Leeds, Institute for Medieval Studies

28–31 July 2017, Champaign-Urbana, Illinois, USA, ‘Mythcon 48’, The Mythopoeic Society


Essays and Scholarship

Markus Altena Davidsen, Academia.edu, date unknown, ‘The Spiritual Tolkien Milieu: A Study of Fiction-based Religion
A dissertation for the doctor's degree at the University of Leiden (The Netherlands). The author's own description is as follows:
“This book offers a comprehensive analysis of the organisation and development of the spiritual Tolkien milieu, a largely online-situated network of individuals and groups that draw on J.R.R. Tolkien's literary mythology for spiritual inspiration. It is the first academic treatment of Tolkien spirituality and one of the first monographs on fiction-based religion, a type of religion that uses fiction as authoritative texts. Adopting a semiotic approach to religion, the book raises questions about the persuasive power of narrative, about religious blending, and about rationalisation of beliefs. How can some readers come to believe that supernatural agents from fictional narratives are real? How do fiction-based religions emerge when their authoritative texts lack important religious building-blocks, such as descriptions of rituals? And how do adherents of fiction-based religions legitimise their beliefs, given the fact that their religion is based on fiction? In short, with Tolkien religion as a case the dissertation aims to uncover the semiotic structures and processes involved in the construction and maintenance of fiction-based religion, and the social structures that sup¬port the plausibility of such religion.”

Hurin of the Keys
by Peter Xavier Price
Emine Çiftçi, Academia.edu, date unknown, ‘The Signs of On Fairy Stories by J.R.R. Tolkien in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Peter Pan

Kevin Hensler, Academia.edu, date unknown, ‘Consideration of Gender-Embodiment in the Works of J.R.R. Tolkien – Conference Abridgement

Stephen Mirarchi, Academia.edu, date unknown, ‘Intellect, Will, and Assent in Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings. St. Austin Review 16:4 (July/August 2016): 22-26.

Thomas Honegger, Academia.edu, Tuesday, 5 April 2016, ‘'We don't need another hero' – Problematic Heroes and their Function in Some of Tolkien's Works

Thomas Honegger, Academia.edu, Saturday, 8 October 2016, ‘‘Fantastic Animals, Animals in the Fantastic’, Fastitocalon – Studies in Fantasticism Ancient to Modern Vol. VI, 2016, Issue 1 & 2
The editorial introduction to this issue of Fastitocalon dealing with animals in relation to the fantastic.

Kris Swank, Academia.edu, Monday, 10 October 2016, ‘The Irish Otherworld Voyage of Roverandom
The slides from a presentation. The abstract reads: ‘Signum University M.A. graduate Kris Swank discusses her thesis, “The Irish Otherworld Voyage of Roverandom,” in which she reads Tolkien's children's story, Roverandom, as a modern immram, a type of medieval Irish tale concerned with a sea-voyage to the Otherworld. View the entire presentation @ https://youtu.be/TNvkhtTaVXw

Medievalist.net, Sunday, 23 October 2016, ‘The Mandrake Plant and Six Anglo-Saxon Cures

Debby Banham and Christine Voth, Medievalist.net, Sunday, 23 October 2016, ‘The Diagnosis and Treatment of Wounds in the Old English Medical Collections: Anglo-Saxon Surgery?


Commentary

John Garth, Oxford Today, Saturday, 1 October 2016, ‘Teaching Tolkien in Nevada: Former OT digital editor John Garth on his move to Las Vegas
John Garth tells the story of his year in the USA – or at least some of it. Tolkien, Las Vegas, USA and Garth's excellent journalistic (and storytelling) command of the language blend to a fine article.

David Russell Mosley, Patheos, Monday, 3 October 2016, ‘Can Christians Believe Myths? Looking to Tolkien for Some Answers

Lynn Forest-Hill, Wednesday, 12 October 2016, ‘First in October
The reading group is on book V of The Lord of the Rings, discussing ‘The Siege of Gondor’ and ‘The Ride of the Rohirrim’ (though, having much to say about the former, they only just got started on the latter).

Joseph Pearce, The Imaginative Conservative, Thursday, 13 October 2016, ‘Belloc versus Tolkien: Two Views of Anglo-Saxon England
Spurred by a comment in the memoirs of Jesuit Fr. Martin D'Arcy, Joseph Pearce comments on two opposing views of, particularly, the importance of Anglo-Saxon culture on English Christianity.

Tom Hillman, Friday, 28 October 2016, ‘'For some the only glimpse. For some the awaking.'

Mûmak
by Katarzyna Chmiel-Gugulska

Reviews and Book News

Arwen Kester, Middle-earth News, Monday, 3 October 2016, ‘The Proverbs of Middle-earth, By David Rowe
A pre-review of David Rowe's The Proverbs of Middle-earth from Oloris Publishing.

Wayne Hammond & Christina Scull, Tuesday, 4 October 2016, ‘Tolkien Companion and Guide 2nd Ed.
A second, updated and expanded, edition is being published on 7 September next year. I have pre-ordered (need I say more :-) )
See also Daniel Helen, The Tolkien Society, Wednesday, 5 October 2016, ‘Second edition of “Tolkien Companion and Guide” announced

John D. Rateliff, Tuesday, 4 October 2016, ‘"TOLKIEN & LEWIS" film
A review of the Tolkien and Lewis documentary.

Arwen Kester, Middle-earth News, Thursday, 6 October 2016, ‘Kings, Queens, and Halflings: A Historian Looks at Middle-earth, by David Cofield
On the release of Kings, Queens, and Halflings: A Historian Looks at Middle-earth by David Cofield from Oloris Publishing

Joe Gilronan, Wednesday, 12 October 2016, ‘My book "From The Shire To The Sea" released...
Oloris Publishing has published the art book by Joe Gilronan, From The Shire To The Sea

Jenny Dolfen, Saturday, 15 October 2016, ‘ARTBOOK NEWS (FEAT. MAGLOR'S G-STRING)
About the hardback copies of Songs of Sorrow and Hope and a little production glitch ... (spot the issue with Maglor's G-string on the second to bottom book depicted). I have my copy on my shelves to enjoy whenever I wish :-)

Janet Brennan Croft, Academia.edu, Tuesday, 18 October 2016, ‘Seven v. 32 and Waymeet for Tolkien Teachers
A double review from issue 129 of Mythlore

Kris Swank, Academia.edu, Tuesday, 18 October 2016, ‘Book Reviews (Mythlore 129) - "The Surprising Imagination of C.S. Lewis: An Introduction" and "Ransoming the Wasteland: Papers on C.S. Lewis's Space Trilogy, Chronicles of Narnia, and Other Works"
Another double review from issue 129 of Mythlore

Kris Swank, Wednesday, 19 October 2016, ‘The Voyage of the Dawn Treader and the voyage of Roverandom
Kris Swank's paper for Mythmoot III in 2015, in which she “Compares C.S. Lewis’ 'Voyage of the Dawn Treader' and J.R.R. Tolkien's 'Roverandom,' and the influence on both of medieval Irish immrama”.

The Mythopoeic Society, Thursday, 20 October 2016, ‘Mythlore 129 published, Table of Contents available
See also Lynn Maudlin, The Horn of Rohan Redux, Thursday, 20 October 2016, ‘Mythlore 129 published

Dennis Wise, Friday, 21 October 2016, ‘REVIEW: J.R.R. Tolkien, Robert E. Howard, and the Birth of Modern Fantasy by Deke Parsons
The short version: the book left Wise ‘feeling distinctly underwhelmed.’

John Rateliff, Wednesday, 26 October 2016, ‘The New Arrival (2017 Tolkien Calendar)

David Bratman, The Tolkien Society, Saturday, 29 October 2016, ‘a sinister student
About the latest in the series of murder mysteries by Kel Richards, an Australian radio broadcaster and crime novelist, featuring C.S. Lewis as the detective.


Tolkienian Artwork

Joe Gilronan, FineArtAmerica, Sunday, 25 September 2016, ‘Bilbo Baggins

Tobi, John Howe: Flavour of the Month, Wednesday, 5 October 2016, ‘Trees Company

Peter Xavier Price, DeviantArt, Saturday, 8 October 2016, ‘Hurin of the Keys

Peter Xavier Price, DeviantArt, Saturday, 8 October 2016, ‘Eárendil and Elwing

Graeme Skinner, Sunday, 9 October 2016, ‘Mr Beard

CaroB, John Howe: Flavour of the Month, Monday, 10 October 2016, ‘Ent

Elena Kukanova, Friday, 14 October 2016, ‘Arvedui and Firiel
I am growing quite fond of Elena Kukanova's style ...

User ‘persian-pirate’, DeviantArt, Friday, 14 October 2016, ‘Hobbits

Ambra Bigot, DeviantArt, Sunday, 16 October 2016, ‘Sleeping Smaug...

Elena Stewart, DeviantArt, Monday, 17 October 2016, ‘Galadriel

James Turner Mohan, DeviantArt, Thursday, 20 October 2016, ‘Telerin Portrait
A ‘maiden of Alqualondë’.

User ‘annamare’, DeviantArt, Thursday, 20 October 2016, ‘The First Elves – Cuivienyarna

Leaf by Niggle III
by Riana
Riana, DeviantArt, Saturday, 22 October 2016, ‘Leaf by Niggle I
First of three images by Riana. See comments under the third (numbered ‘V’).

Sergiu, John Howe: Flavour of the Month, Saturday, 22 October 2016, ‘Tree

Miruna Lavinia, DeviantArt, Sunday, 23 October 2016, ‘PROJECT LOTR - landscapes

Elena Kukanova, DeviantArt, Monday, 24 October 2016, ‘Morgoth

Joe Gilronan, FineArtAmerica, Monday, 24 October 2016, ‘Good Morning Gandalf

Tomás Hijo, Monday, 24 October 2016, ‘Curiosity killed the cat. Grishnak

Norloth, John Howe: Flavour of the Month, Tuesday, 25 October 2016, ‘Come back to me and say my land is fair

Miruna Lavinia, DeviantArt, Tuesday, 25 October 2016, ‘Gollum's Cave in the Mountains

Francesca Baerald, Wednesday, 26 October 2016, ‘Map of Middle Earth - Lord of the Rings
Wow!

Riana, DeviantArt, Thursday, 27 October 2016, ‘Leaf by Niggle III

Riana, DeviantArt, Sunday, 30 October 2016, ‘Leaf by Niggle V
I really like these three illustrations for Tolkien's allegorical story, Leaf by Niggle. Riana captures something of the essence of the story in this pictures, the first capturing the obsession of Niggle, the second one of the key moments of the story (the two voices), and the third perfectly summarises the final scene – and particularly the indifference shown by Tompkins and Perkins ... Niggle, who?


Story Internal (Ardalogy)

I do love the attempts to wring out everything from a single sentence, that is at the heart of many story internal discussions. What really happens at this or that point in the story? What is this or that character's personality in this aspect?
Attempts to answer such questions can only rarely stay within the story itself, but will often need to employ various tips and tricks from the toolbox of literary analysis and critique, but always with a view to try to understand better the author's intention with some minute detail.

Tom Hillman, Thursday, 13 October 2016, ‘Hob Hayward, Robin Smallburrow, and the Words of Gildor Inglorion

Tom Hillman, Sunday, 16 October 2016, ‘As One That Returneth from the Dead


Other Stuff

Ian Spittlehouse, Saturday, 1 October 2016, ‘Tolkien and Gordon, the Leeds connection

Joseph Pearce, The Imaginative Conservative, Friday, 21 October 2016, ‘In Memory of The Battle of The Somme

Other Minds Magazine, Sunday, 23 October 2016, ‘Other Minds Issue 16 Published!

‘Hawke’, Sunday, 30 October 2016, ‘Adventures in Middle-earth D&D 5e Tolkien-based Gaming


Rewarding Discussions

LotR Plaza, ‘Middle-Earth's Noldor Population in Third Age [sic]
Starting from the question of the Noldorin population in Middle-earth at some point in the Third Age, the discussion moves on to the question of the meaning of the word High-elf (and derivatives). While inconclusive, this kind of thing is interesting also in that it shows that Tolkien's usage was not always consistent – not even within a single work such as The Lord of the Rings (an inconsistency which Tolkien acknowledged in the index).

LotR Plaza, ‘A Secret Vice
Discussions of the interpretations of this book continue with valuable input …


In Print

Amon Hen issue 261, October 2016, Andrew Butler (ed.), The Tolkien Society.
I had the opportunity to sit down and read through this issue of Amon Hen more thoroughly than I have with a number of earlier issues, and I quite enjoyed it. The most important column, by far, for me is ‘Behind Glass Doors’ (reporting on the committee work). A number of other regular columns report on other activities of the Society, such as e.g. ‘The Burning Palantír’ which reports on antics of the Tolkien Society Facebook group, and not least ‘Michael's Miscellany’ which discusses mentions of Tolkien in the general press, and which, with its broader scope, in my own not-too-humble opinion serves as a fine supplement to my own transactions.
This issue also featured an supplement to Michael Flowers' own report on his Inaugural East Yorkshire Tolkien Tour, this one by Catherine Thorn, who didn't feel any restraint in praising the organisers, and Michael in particular, for what was, by all accounts, a truly brilliant experience.
Irina Metzler has written an article, ‘Eloi and Morlocks: The Inspiration for All Things Eldar and Mordor?’, arguing that Tolkien was inspired by the Eloi and Morlocks in Well's The Time Machine for the Elvish roots EL and MOR. The article is well written and interesting, but ultimately not very convincing given the numerous earlier appearances of these phonetic elements in related senses, a tradition that both Wells and Tolkien tapped into, though for Tolkien Wells was of course a (relatively recent) part of that tradition.
Kristine Larsen wrote about polarised moon light in ‘Do Dwarves Wear Their Sunglasses at Night? Pondering the Science of Moon-letters’, which suggests that the moon-letters could be explained (or perhaps rather modelled) scientifically by the polarisation of the light reflected by the moon.
The second part of Angela Nichol's ‘The Tragedy of Arvedui and Its Relevance to The Lord of the Rings’ also appears in this issue, which may, or may not, bring her investigations of Arvedui to a close. While there is little new to people who have carefully read The Lord of the Rings, it is good to see the book being read with this kind of attention to detail and this kind of analytical approach.

Mythprint no. 378, Fall 2016, Megan Abrahamson (ed.), The Mythopoeic Society.
Mythcon, Mythcon and Mythcon … and a few reviews, including Ryder W. Miller's review of Tolkien Among the Moders by Ralph C. Wood (ed.).

Beyond Bree October 2016, Nancy Martsch (ed.), The American Mensa Tolkien Special Interest Group
I haven't had time to look through my copy of Beyond Bree this month and there is, unfortunately, no table of contents from which I might at least get an overview.

Web Sites

Eárendil and Elwing’

by Peter Xavier Price
British Library Maps Collection
I don't know if it's for being a Scout ... or a scientist ... or a Tolkienist, but I do love maps and I know a lot of other people who do so as well, including many other Tolkien enthusiasts, so therefore ….
Not least, check out this great article: Tom Harper, Bristh Library – Maps, ‘What is a fantasy map?
And yes, Tolkien does get mentioned along with a lot of other fantasy map makers.

Edward Platt, aeon, 25 july 2013, ‘Out of the deep
“From Atlantis to Noah's Ark, we have long been drawn to stories of submerged lands. What lies beneath the flood myths?”
I'll also put this old article here about the attraction of (some might say obsession with) flood and submersion narratives. The article doesn't mention Tolkien or Númenórë, but it deals with a tradition into which Tolkien's own flood narrative fits nicely.


The Blog Roll

These are blogs you really should be following yourself if you're interested in Tolkien ...
Contents from these blogs will only be reported here if there is something that I find particularly interesting, or posts that fit with a monthly theme. However, you will find below links to monthly archives of posts for months where the blog has featured interesting posts with at least some Tolkien connection. In some cases you may find a headline for a post, if I wish to recommend it particularly.

Christina Scull and Wayne G. Hammond, ‘Too Many Books and Never Enough
Archive of posts from October 2016

Dimitra Fimi, ‘Dr. Dimitra Fimi
Archive of posts from October 2016

John D. Rateliff -- ‘Sacnoth's Scriptorium
Archive of posts from October 2016

John Garth, ‘John Garth
Archive of posts from October 2016

David Bratman, ‘Kalimac's Journal
Archive of posts from October 2016

Jenny Dolfen, ‘Jenny's Sketchbook
Archive of posts from October 2016

Various, The Mythopoeic Society
News archive

Various (Bradford Eden, ed.) Journal of Tolkien Research (JTR)
Archive of contributions for the on-going volume 3, issue 3 – no new articles in October 2016.

Various, The Tolkien Society (TS)
Archive of posts from October 2016

Simon Cook, Ye Machine
Archive of posts from October 2016

Southfarthing Mathom
Archive of posts from October 2016

Various, The Mythopoeic Society, ‘The Horn of Rohan Redux
Archive of posts from October 2016

Sue Bridgwater, ‘Skorn
Archive of posts from October 2016

Tom Hillman, ‘Alas, not me
Archive of posts from October 2016

Bruce Charlton, ‘Tolkien's The Notion Club Papers
Archive of posts from October 2016

Various, ‘Middle-earth News
Archive of posts from October 2016

Sources

No new sources in October 2016

For older sources, see http://parmarkenta.blogspot.com/p/sources.html

Nazgûl and Galadriel
by Katarzyna Chmiel-Gugulska

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

On Beren and Lúthien

I am sure that you have all heard that there will be a new book out in May next year, Beren and Lúthien will be published in 4 May, within weeks of the centenary of the event where young Edith danced for John Ronald near Roos in the spring of 1917 (see e.g. Michael Flowers' excellent analysis, ‘A Hemlock by any other name…’).  Personally, I am already thinking of this book as ‘the Centenary Edition’.

Not much is known at this point, and Wayne Hammond and Christina Scull, unsurprisingly, collect the known facts in their blog post on the new book.  John Garth has also produced an excellent blog post on the book, summarising, inter alia, what material Christopher Tolkien is likely to draw from.

When you've read these two blog posts, you probably will not need to read the rest of mine (except, perhaps, to be nice to me :-) ).

The book will start with the story in ‘its original form’, which Hammond & Scull presume will be the version published in The Book of Lost Tales 2 (though I will retain some small hope that it has proven possible to reconstruct some of the deleted pencil version under the published ink-version ...).

Then we will get ‘passages in prose and verse from later texts that illustrate the narrative as it changed.’ I assume – and very much hope – that this will be commented, and that Christopher Tolkien will take the opportunity to take a more ‘longitudinal’ view on the story, rather than the more ‘transversal’ view employed in The History of Middle-earth. By this, I mean the emphasis on the individual story and its evolution, contextualising the story amid earlier and later versions rather than amid the stage in the evolution of the legendarium to which it belongs.

Such an approach could possibly belong in the same scholarly tradition as Gergely Nagy's paper ‘The great chain of reading: (Inter-)textual relations and the technique of mythopoesis in the Túrin story’ in Jane Chance's (ed) Tolkien the Medievalist (Routledge 2003). Not (at least I would consider that quite unlikely) in the research points being made in the paper, but in the study of the variations of a single of the great stories.

And that is about it – nothing little more is known, really, though at least a little more may be said.

First, this book will not be anything like The Children of Húrin. I have seen a number of comments suggesting that some readers think that they will get something of that sort, but I am afraid that these are going to be disappointed. It seems likely that the book will be more accessible to the non-academic reader than The History of Middle-earth, but it will not be a self-contained narrative other than the promised full text of the original version, and personally I would be rather disappointed, if it is not accompanied by some notes and commentary by Christopher Tolkien on the evolution of the story.

Changes in style, form, and even changes in plot, show-case Tolkien's own changing ideas and opinions on literary aesthetics, ethics, etc., and these deserve to be contextualised by the person who is best able to do so. Here I am reminded of some Carl Hostetter's points in his paper, ‘Elvish as She is Spoke’, and I believe that just as Tolkien's changing linguistic ideas and tastes are reflected in the evolution of his invented languages, so are his changing literary ideas and tastes (among other things) reflected in the evolution of the great stories.

Whether there will be any new material seems at this point doubtful, but I will not give up hope entirely until I have the book in hand. John Garth has some intriguing speculations, and I would like nothing better than for this to be the case, but I have to admit that I doubt it, as news outlets claim that the texts for this book have been extracted from The History of Middle-earth to be presented in this new context, and they quote the HarperCollins press release as saying that the stories are here ‘presented together for the first time’.

Another possible source for new material might be in relation to the more personal aspect – for instance quotations from Tolkien's diaries from 1917, or from letters to his children about the 1917 incident or about the personal significance of the story. Such things would also be a dream come true.

Update 1 (2016-10-20):
The description at the HarperCollins product page (see below), is somewhat confusing. The description first mentions something “Painstakingly restored from Tolkien’s manuscripts and presented for the first time as a fully continuous and standalone story”, and later has the description of first presenting the story in “its original form” before moving on to present “passages in prose and verse from later texts that illustrate the narrative as it changed.” These two descriptions seem to me oddly inconsistent – certainly if the idea of the ‘original form’, as suggested by Wayne Hammond and Christina Scull, refers to the version given in The Book of Lost Tales 2.

Discussing this on Facebook, John Garth has suggested that he feels “all the more strongly that something derived from the texts behind the 1937 "Quenta Silmarillion" offers the best fit for the description – an "epic tale of Beren and Lúthien" that has been "painstakingly restored from Tolkien’s manuscripts and presented for the first time as a fully continuous and standalone story". And that does sound rather like Christopher's method in "The Children of Húrin", doesn't it?”

This seems a good guess, and it certainly fits the descriptions better than reproducing the Tale of Tinúviel from The Book of Lost Tales 2, though it would require a rather special interpretation of the word ‘original’ as used in the description. This would of course also make the connection to the centenary of the original event somewhat more tenuous (which I think would be a great shame), and, as John Garth also points out, it would make the choice of ‘passages in prose and verse from later texts’ rather less impressive, as the later texts will then be rather fewer (and with less significant changes).

I cannot help but hope for something less akin to the method from The Children of Húrin, as I find the story of Beren and Lúthien (or the Lay of Leithian) to be rather less suited for this treatment. Even if constrained to texts belonging to the creative period that brought us the 1937 ‘Quenta Silmarillion’, this approach will require a degree of conflation and homogenisation that is not, in my opinion, beneficial for our understanding of Tolkien and his own relationship with his mythology.

Instead, I will – at least for a while longer – keep hoping for a book where the central focus is on the earliest surviving version (the ‘original form’, in my eyes), and then highlighting and describing the author's changing literary thoughts, tastes and ideas through commented samples from the many later versions of the story.  Regardless of any new material, that will still be a book, I would be very eager to include in my collection.


Links to articles — not an exhaustive list! (updated):
The really good ones:
Beren and Lúthien’, Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull, blog post, 2016-10-19
Beren and Lúthien, a centenary publication’, John Garth, blog post, 2016-10-19 (updated 2016-10-20)
Beren and Lúthien: Five Questions’, Nelson Goering, The LotR Plaza, 2016-10-20

The official ones:
Beren and Lúthien’, HarperCollins product page
Return to Middle-Earth for Houghton Mifflin Harcourt’, press release, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2016-10-19

The first:
New Tolkien tale to come from HC in 2017’, The Bookseller (staff), 2016-10-18

Alison Flood in The Guardian has a long history of well-informed reporting on Tolkien matters:
JRR Tolkien's Middle-earth love story to be published next year’, Alison Flood, The Guardian, 2016-10-19

The Tolkien Society
New Tolkien book: Beren and Lúthien’, Daniel Helen, The Tolkien Society, 2016-10-19

Some small subset of the rest ....
Wednesday, 19th October 2016
J.R.R. Tolkien's Beren and Lúthien to be published in 2017’, Christian Holub, Entertainment Weekly
New JRR Tolkien book Beren and Lúthien to be published in 2017’, Tristram Fane Saunders, The Telegraph
New Tolkien Book Will Tell The Sweetest, Most Middle Earth Love Story Of All Time’, Claire Fallon, Huffington Post
J.R.R. Tolkien’s Beren and Lúthien Will be Published in 2017’, Stubby the Rocket, TOR.com
J.R.R. Tolkien's Story, ‘Beren and Lúthien,’ Will Be Published a Century After It Was Written’, Jennifer Maloney, Wall Street Journal (blog)

Thursday, 20th October 2016
HarperCollins is Publishing J.R.R. Tolkien’s Beren and Lu´thien, 100 Years After It Was Written’, Maddy Myers, The Mary Sue
New J.R.R. Tolkien book coming in 2017’, Sunday Times
New J.R.R. Tolkien book, 'Beren and Luthien,' to be published in 2017’, Sarah Mulé, UPI
New Tolkien book announced: Middle-earth love story to be published in 2017’, George Simpson, Express
New edition of Tolkien’s Luthien and Beren coming May 2017’ [sic], ‘Greendragon’, TheOneRing.net
J.R.R. Tolkien's Stories of Beren and Lúthien’, Séamas Ó Sionnaigh, An Sionnach Fionn
One of J.R.R. Tolkien's oldest stories is being published as a standalone novel’, Andre Liptak, The Verge

Friday, 21st October 2016
Stop what you're doing and weep with joy, new Tolkien book is coming’, Lindsay Davis, Mashable
New romance from J.R.R. Tolkien is coming next year’, Dennis DiClaudio, A.V. Club

Saturday, 22nd October 2016
Lord of the Rings Spinoff Beren and Lúthien to be Published in 2017’, Alex Osborn, IGN


New J.R.R. Tolkien book to be published 100 years after it was written’, Kazakh TV, 2016-10-24
We're Set to Get a New Tolkien Book in 2017’, Carli Velocci, Geek.com, 2016-10-25
Tolkien's Lost Book Is Vital to the History of Middle-Earth’, Caitlin Busch, Inverse, 2016-10-27

Thursday, 6 October 2016

Tolkien Transactions LXXIII

September 2016

I begin to feel that I am copying Tolkien with my perpetual excuses about time – having too much to do and too little time to do it. But a lack of time (or, rather, an excess of things to do) is nonetheless a very real part of my life, so my usual disclaimers apply about newness, completeness and relevance (or any other implication of responsibility) are as pertinent as ever (all errors, omissions, inaccuracies etc. are of course my own). One way that I indent to deal with this is to leave more entries uncommented, and merely trust that you can judge the merits for yourselves :-)

In September, I was off to Oxonmoot with my daughter, and we had a wonderful time! I do intend to write up some kind of report (I had hoped to have it done by now, but ...) to appear at a later time. Though I am very fond of Frodo, Merry and Pippin, I am somewhat more restrained in my enthusiasm for Hobbits in general, and I the September celebration of hobbit characters is the one Tolkienian event that I don't really care about, but it's good and fine that many enjoy it. October is the month of my own birthday (towards the end of the month), and I am getting to the age of adventure (at least according to Tolkien), so if my blogging suddenly stops within the next year, don't be too alarmed: I may just be off on an adventure and return after a year or two to settle down again.

These transactions are posted on my blog, Parma-kenta (Enquiry into the books) and on the Tolkien Society web-site.

This month it has suited my purposes to sort the contents under the following headlines:
1: News
2: Events
3: Essays and Scholarship
4: Commentary
5: Reviews and Book News
6: Tolkienian Artwork
7: Story Internal (Ardalogy)
8: Other Stuff
9: Rewarding Discussions
10: In Print
11: Web Sites
12: The Blog Roll
13: Sources

Starlight Shire
by Joe Gilronan

News

Swissinfo, Monday, 5 September 2016, ‘Cashing in on Tolkien's Switzerland

Elena Koshy, New Straits Times, Saturday, 17 September 2016, ‘World commemorates death anniversary of Lord of the Writers, JRR Tolkien

Clayton Utz, Lexology, Monday, 19 September 2016, ‘One infringement to rule them all: Federal Court finds jewellery infringes copyright in Lord of the Rings
All thoughts of law and justice aside, I cannot help but find it oddly appropriate to rid this world of a few more copies of a symbol of the uttermost evil – symbolic of the desire for power over others, for power to make others into will-less slaves ...

Arwen Kester, Wednesday, 21 September 2016, ‘Happy Hobbit Day!
See also
Amy Sturgis, Thursday, 22 September 2016, ‘Long live the Halflings!
Marcel Aubron-Bülles, Thursday, 22 September 2016, ‘Happy Birthday, Bilbo and Frodo Baggins
Well, yeah, happy birthday, Bagginses!
Alya Rehman, USC News, Thursday, 22 September 2016, ‘Happy birthday to J. R. R. Tolkien's Bilbo and Frodo
Jeffrey R. Hawboldt, Thursday, 22 September 2016, ‘Happy Hobbit Day!

Bonnie North, WUWM, Monday, 26 September 2016, ‘Milwaukee Documentarian Explores True 'Myth' in 'Tolkien & Lewis'


Events

Reports & comments on past events
5–8 August 2016, San Antonio, Texas, US, ‘Mythcon 47’, The Mythopoeic Society. The 2016 theme is ‘Faces of Mythology: Ancient, Medieval, and Modern’

3–4 September 2016, Sarehole Mill, UK, ‘Middle-earth Festival
Daniel Helen, The Tolkien Society, Friday, 2 September 2016, ‘Middle-earth Festival returns to Sarehole Mill this weekend
Graham Young, Birmingham Mail, Sunday, 4 September 2016, ‘Watch how Tolkien inspired Middle Earth Festival is fun for all the family – whatever the weather

8–11 September 2016, Saint Anthony's, Oxford, ‘Oxonmoot 2016’, The Tolkien Society
Andrew Wells, Sunday, 11 September 2016, ‘Three good things: Sunday’ ('twas good to see you, too!)

24–25 September 2016, Newcastle Castle, ‘Tolkien Weekend 2016’, Time and Tide Events
Francesca Barbini, SciFiFantasy Network, Tuesday, 20 September 2016, ‘Tolkien Weekend 2016
Francesca T. Barbini, SciFiFantasy Network, Saturday, 24 September 2016, ‘“Illuminating Tolkien” Exhibition’ – I think it was a good thing for our savings-account that I was unable to go to Newcastle ...


Info on upcoming & on-going events (as of 1 September)
26 April 2016 – 27 February 2017, Various, Staffordshire, ‘Exhibition: J.R.R. Tolkien in Staffordshire 1915 – 1918’, The Haywood Society
Express and Star, Thursday, 29 September 2016, ‘JRR Tolkien display on show

5 November 2016, Oxford, ‘Not Oxonmoot-moot’, The Tolkien Society

11 November 2016, Liverpool Hope University, ‘Tolkien Day 2016’, Liverpool Hope University

3 January 2017, World-wide, ‘Tolkien Birthday Toast 2017’, The Tolkien Society

16–18 June 2017, Waddow Hall, Clitheroe, Lancashire, ‘The Middle-earth Beer & Music Festival’, The Ale House Clitheroe


Essays and Scholarship

Glorfindel
by Jenny Dolfen
Yes, I discovered that I had forgotten the papers uploaded to Acedemia.edu in August. Please note that one does need to have an account and to sign in for downloading the papers at this site. The papers listed below are only a subset of the papers reported to the “J.R.R. Tolkien” research interest, others being excluded e.g. for being in languages I don't speak, or for just making an abstract available.

Rolf Bremmer, Academia.edu, Upload date unknown, ‘Across Borders: Anglo-Saxon England and the Germanic World
Bremmer, Rolf Jr. ‘Across Borders: Anglo-Saxon England and the Germanic World’ in The Cambridge History of Early Medieval English Literature, ed. Clare A. Lees (Cambridge: CUP, 2012), pp. 185-208

Nataša Tučev, Academia.edu, Upload date unknown, ‘The Knife, the Sting and the Tooth: Manifestations of Shadow in The Lord of the Rings
Tučev, Nataša. ‘The Knife, the Sting and the Tooth: Manifestations of Shadow in The Lord of the Rings’ in Linguistics and Literature Vol. 3, No 1, 2004, pp. 111 - 121

Janet Brennan Croft, Academia.edu, Sunday, 7 August 2016, ‘Doors Into Elf Mounds
Slide show on “J.R.R. Tolkien’s Introductions, Prefaces, and Forewords”

Janet Brennan Croft, Academia.edu, Friday, 12 August 2016, ‘"Perilous and Fair, Ancient and Modern, Luminous and Powerful" : Critical Directions for the Study of Tolkien's Women in the 21st Century
An author talk given at Rutgers University on 27 July, based on the introduction (co-written with Leslie Donovan) to the book Perilous and Fair: Women in the Life and Works of JRR Tolkien.

Journal of Tolkien Research, vol. 3, issue 3, Thursday, 1 September 2016, ‘Authorizing Tolkien: Control, Adaptation, and Dissemination of J.R.R. Tolkien's Works
The peer-reviewed articles of issue 3 (vol. 3) of the Journal of Tolkien Research have a theme introduced by Robin A. Reid and Michael D. Elam. I have to admit that though I do consider the study of ‘fan’ activities a relevant area of academic research, I have never found that it relates very well to the research on the specific franchise. In other words, I have skipped these articles as not telling us anything worth-while about Tolkien or his works. Others will certainly disagree, and I'll welcome comments about what this may tell us about Tolkien and / or his works, but given my lack of interest, I don't have the time to engage with these articles myself.

Annalisa Palmer, Friday, 9 September 2016, ‘Tolkien and Fairy-Story
An interesting commentary on Faërie in The Lord of the Rings. Though I do not agree with everything, and have found a couple of mistakes, I found it a good and interesting post.

Donald E. Warden, Medievalist.net, Friday, 9 September 2016, ‘The Extent of Indigenous-Norse Contact and Trade Prior to Columbus
Merely because I think the topic and the developments in recent years would have interested Tolkien.

Annalisa Palmer, Sunday, 18 September 2016, ‘Hobbits and Heroes
An excellent look at the Four Travellers as modern heroes (many will probably have realised that I do not much admire Samwise ‘Halfwit’ Gamgee, but perhaps especially therefore it is good to read analyses that value him more than I do myself).

Nelson Goering, Journal of Tolkien Research, Friday, 23 September 2016, ‘Tolkien and Sanskrit (2016) by Mark T. Hooker
A very excellent review (and discussion) by Nelson Goering of Mark Hooker's book, Tolkien and Sanskrit.

Tom Hillman, Monday, 26 September 2016, ‘These Are Not The Elves You're Looking For. (I)
Fascinating! I certainly look forward to seeing the next steps.

Edmund Weiner, Tuesday, 27 September 2016, ‘Devilry in the Lord of the Rings
On Tolkien's use of the word devilry in The Lord of the Rings.


Commentary

The King of the Golden Hall
by Peter Xavier Price
Matthew Walter, The Federalist, Friday, 26 August 2016, ‘Tolkien Influenced Rock More Than The Velvet Underground Did
Though I do, of course, sympathise with the idea that Tolkien's influence is staggering and reaches unexpected areas, this article, however, leaves me unconvinced. While it is true that Tolkien did become an exponent for, and to some extent shaped, the rise of fantasy and medievalism, these themes would, in my considered opinion, have emerged also without Tolkien, and in forms only slightly different from what we saw. The world was ready for these (as it is still), and if not Tolkien, then some other authors would have been its exponents (there were precursors to Tolkien, just as there were both contemporary and later authors who were uninfluenced by him). However, while I think the article exaggerates Tolkien's thematic influence, the listing of his more direct influence is still impressive.

James, Friday, 16 September 2016, ‘Northern Courage, Ofermōde and Thorin Oakenshield's last stand
While I can see the temptation, I think it is a misunderstanding to see Thorin's attack in the Battle of Five Armies as an example of ofermod (modern Danish, overmod) – certainly in Tolkien's interpretation of the word.

Tom Hilmann, Thursday, 22 September 2016, ‘In Dwimordene, In Lórien (TT 3.vi.514)
On the word Dwimordene.

Brandon TheGrey, Friday, 23 September 2016, ‘A Hobbit on the Western Front: JRR Tolkien's First World War
A rather short (as it must be for a blog post), but seemingly reasonably accurate (I haven't had time to read it in detail) summary based, of course, on John Garth's brilliant Tolkien and the Great War. Perhaps a post for those who haven't read Garth's book and wish a taste of what it may reveal.

Rostislav Kurka, SciFiFantasy Network, Friday, 23 September 2016, ‘The Temptation of Power, Bombadil, and the Bendu
Curious – in many ways it is more about Star Wars than about Tolkien, but the parallels are striking and well-made.

Dennis Wise, Saturday, 24 September 2016, ‘Tolkien and Sidney on Rhetoric?
A reference to and a very short discussion of an article by Tanya Caroline Wood in Tolkien and His Literary Resonances.

Lynn Forest-Hill, Southfarthing Mathom, Tuesday, 27 September 2016, ‘September
Now on book V, discussing ‘The Muster of Rohan’ and ‘The Siege of Gondor’.


Reviews and Book News

Lee WL, Tuesday, 6 September 2016, ‘Roverandom

Jeffrey R. Hawboldt, Wednesday, 7 September 2016, ‘"The Lay of Aortrou and Itroun" Full Details’ [Sic]
Some details on the forthcoming edition of The Lay of Aotrou and Itroun (edited by Verlyn Flieger), including the publisher's blurp. The blurpish insistence on creating specific links to Tolkien's Middle-earth legendarium is perhaps regrettable as the book will surely sell well enough without such claims (I will, in any case, be sure to get one).

Lee WL, Sunday, 18 September 2016, ‘Smith of Wootton Major

Kitty, SciFiFantasy Network, Monday, 19 September 2016, ‘On Eagles' Wings – Thayer on Tolkien
An interview with Anna Thayer, in particular about her book On Eagles' Wings: An exploration of Eucatastrophe in Tolkien.

Brenton Dickieson, Wednesday, 28 August 2016, ‘Bandersnatch and Creative Collaboration by Diana Pavlac Glyer
A self-proclaimed “glowing review” of Diana Pavlac Glyer's Bandersnatch by a “fan of Glyer’s work”


Tolkienian Artwork

Maria Tsianti, DeviantArt, Monday, 5 September 2016, ‘Smaug the Stupendous

The Great Goblin
by Tomás Hijo
Elena Kukanova, DeviantArt, Thursday, 8 September 2016, ‘Haleth – sketch
I like this :-)

Elena Kukanova, DeviantArt, Thursday, 8 September 2016, ‘Maglor
I think this must be a portrait of Maglor after he and Maedhros had realised that they had forfeited all claim to the Silmarils … singing in pain and regret.

Tomás Hijo, Friday, 16 September 2016, ‘The Great Goblin

Peter Xavier Price, DeviantArt, Sunday, 18 September 2016, ‘The King of the Golden Hall

James Turner Mohan, Sunday, 18 September 2016, ‘The First Men
In the style of concept sketches for the three tribes and some of their artifacts ...

Elena Kukanova, DeviantArt, Friday, 23 September 2016, ‘Caranthir – sketch

Joe Gilronan, Monday, 26 September 2016, ‘Starlight Shire

Miruna Lavinia, DeviantArt, Monday, 26 September 2016, ‘Emyn Muil
An unusual topic, but quite nicely done!


Story Internal (Ardalogy)

Tom Hillman, Thursday, 25 August 2016, ‘The Last Temptation of Galadriel -- Catechism, Gospel, and Fairy-story in 'The Mirror of Galadriel'
A discussion placed in that intersection of story-internal and story-external concerns; where you need to draw on story-external knowledge in order to understand and contextualise what his going on within the story. I do tend to like these discussions on the marches of Faërie ...

Jeff LaSala, TOR.com, Wednesday, 14 September 2016, ‘Lúthien: Tolkien's Badass Elf Princess
A retelling of the story of Lúthien and Beren in a modern (and, I would say, simpler) vernacular and with comments by the reteller.


Other Stuff

Séamas Ó Sionnaigh, Monday, 5 September 2016, ‘Imaginary Maps in Fantasy Fiction
A summary of a series of articles by the Library of Congress titled Imaginary Maps in Literature and Beyond. It should be fairly easy to find the specific article dealing primarily with Tolkien, but the whole topic is of course relevant, and later authors in the fantasy genre have had to at least consider his statement that “I wisely started with a map, and made the story fit (generally with meticulous care for distances).” (Letter to Naomi Mitchison).

Marcel Aubron-Bülles, Saturday, 10 September 2016, ‘Why J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis would never have been friends in the age of Facebook, Twitter and Whatsapp
There's a Danish expression that applies in situations such as this, and which translates to ‘Well roared, lion!’ It needed to be said, it is well said and to the point – thank you, Marcel!

Myla Malinalda, Middle-earth News, Friday, 16 September 2016, ‘TOLKIEN: The Musical


Rewarding Discussions

LotR Plaza, ‘A Secret Vice
I which I managed go get myself entangled in a discussion with a philologist on the likelihood of Tolkien having invented Fonwegian (one would think I had somewhere managed to get to know better, but alas …)

LotR Plaza, ‘Goldberry and the water lillies
Worth browsing even if only to go watch the video that user ‘Dorwiniondil’ links to on 29 September …


In Print

Once more I have not had time yet to read what I have received (the latest issue of Beyond Bree). In my (upcoming) Oxonmoot report, I will write about the treasures that my daughter and I brought back from Oxford.


Web Sites

Stephen Walsh – Fantasy Artist
I saw his pencil Éowyn at Oxonmoot and was impressed, and many of his other Tolkienian works are also excellent.

Annalisa Palmer
A relatively new (August 2016) blog with Tolkienian contents.

Lee LW, ‘Tolkien Read Through
Lee LW blogs as he works his way through the Tolkien's works.


The Blog Roll

These are blogs you really should be following yourself if you're interested in Tolkien ...
Contents from these blogs will only be reported here if there is something that I find particularly interesting, or posts that fit with a monthly theme. However, you will find below links to monthly archives of posts for months where the blog has featured interesting posts with at least some Tolkien connection. In some cases you may find a headline for a post, if I wish to recommend it particularly.

More of Me
by Jenny Dolfen
Dimitra Fimi, ‘Dr. Dimitra Fimi
Archive of posts from September 2016

John D. Rateliff -- ‘Sacnoth's Scriptorium
Archive of posts from September 2016

Marcel Aubron-Bülles, ‘The Tolkienist
Archive of posts from September 2016

David Bratman, ‘Kalimac's Journal
Archive of posts from September 2016

Edmund Weiner, ‘Philoloblog
Archive of posts from September 2016

Annalisa Palmer, her blog
Archive of posts from September 2016

Various (Bradford Eden, ed.)Journal of Tolkien Research (JTR)
Archive of contributions for the on-going volume 2, issue 1

Various, The Tolkien Society (TS)
Archive of posts from September 2016

Southfarthing Mathom
Archive of posts from September 2016

Sue Bridgwater, ‘Skorn
Archive of posts from September 2016

Tom Hilman, ‘Alas, not me
Archive of posts from September 2016

Bruce Charlton, ‘Tolkien's The Notion Club Papers
Archive of posts from September 2016

Various, ‘Middle-earth News
Archive of posts from September 2016

Jeffrey R. Hawboldt, ‘Expressions of Substance
Archive of posts from September 2016

Sources

See section “Websistes” for new sources in September 2016

For older sources, see http://parmarkenta.blogspot.com/p/sources.html

Currently reading:
Beowulf: A Translation and Commentary by J.R.R. Tolkien edited by Christopher J.R. Tolkien.
Læringsteorier: Seks Aktuelle Forståelser edited by Knud Illeris

Sunday, 18 September 2016

Tolkien Transactions LXXII

August 2016

I had these transactions something like 80% done before going to Oxonmoot, but couldn't get the last bit finished due to my other preparations. Now, however, I wish to get it out – to get it off my mind, so that I can work on other things (such as e.g. a report from my first Oxonmoot). This means that most entries will appear without commentary, and that there will be things I ignore simply because I haven't the time to dig out all my notes (if anything important turns up later, I will of course include it in a later issue).

All the usual disclaimers apply about newness, completeness and relevance (or any other implication of responsibility) :-)

These transactions are posted on my blog, Parma-kenta (Enquiry into the books) and on the Tolkien Society web-site.

This month it has suited my purposes to sort the contents under the following headlines:
1: News
2: Events
3: Essays and Scholarship
4: Commentary
5: Reviews and Book News
6: Tolkienian Artwork
7: Story Internal (Ardalogy)
8: Other Stuff
9: In Print
10: Web Sites
11: The Blog Roll
12: Sources
Radagast the Brown
by Joe Gilronan

News

David Oberhelman, Mythopoeic Society, Sunday, 7 August 2016, ‘Mythopoeic Awards: 2016 Winners Announced
Congratulations to all winners and finalists!

Bradley Barth, SC Magazine, Monday, 8 August 2016, ‘Lord of the spy ring: Strider APT cites Tolkien, found snooping on Russian targets
Finally some solid evidence linking Tolkien to spying! … 43 years after his death, and spyware rather than military intelligence, but still :-) Have ‘Elansea’ turned hackers to build their otherwise non-existent case?

Tom Cowie, The Age, Thursday, 11 August 2016, ‘One ring to fool them all: court orders destruction of fake Tolkien jewellery
In cases like this, I generally find myself siding with the Estate on moral grounds …


Events

Reports & comments on past events
5–8 August 2016, San Antonio, Texas, US, ‘Mythcon 47’, The Mythopoeic Society. The 2016 theme is ‘Faces of Mythology: Ancient, Medieval, and Modern’
David Bratman, Tuesday, 2 August 2016, ‘Mythcon pre-port
Lynn Maudlin, Mythopoeic Society, Sunday, 7 August 2016, ‘CONGRATULATIONS, 2016 Mythopoeic Award Winners
David Bratman, Tuesday, 9 August 2016, ‘Mythcon report, part 1’ (also see part 2, part 3, and part 4)
John D. Rateliff, Saturday, 13 August 2016, ‘MythCon and the MythSoc Awards


Info on upcoming & on-going events (as of 1 September)
26 April 2016 – 27 February 2017, Various, Staffordshire, ‘Exhibition: J.R.R. Tolkien in Staffordshire 1915 – 1918’, The Haywood Society
3–4 September 2016, Sarehole Mill, UK, ‘Middle-earth Festival
Justine Halifax, Birmingham Mail, Wednesday, 31 August 2016, ‘Fans of Tolkien are in for a treat at Middle Earth Festival in Birmingham

8–11 September 2016, Saint Anthony's, Oxford, ‘Oxonmoot 2016’, The Tolkien Society

24–25 September 2016, Newcastle Castle, ‘Tolkien Weekend 2016’, Time and Tide Events
Will also feature the Illuminating Tolkien exhibition of art and illustration.

16–18 June 2017, Waddow Hall, Clitheroe, Lancashire, ‘The Middle-earth Beer & Music Festival’, The Ale House Clitheroe


Essays and Scholarship

The Middle Earth Beer & Music Festival (B/W proof)
by Tomás Hijo
Simon Cook, Thursday, 4 August 2016, ‘Tolkien: Christianity and Paganism
and Simon Cook, Thursday, 4 August 2016, ‘Heathen kings under a swift sunrise
I find these two posts very interesting. There are so many things to take into consideration here, that trying to grasp these issues, I usually feel as if I was trying to hold on to too many bits and pieces, so that whenever I try to hold on to something new, I drop something that I had already gotten a hold on. Sometimes I feel convinced that there is a way to hold on to them all, while at other times, I wonder if Tolkien's own ideas are too diverse to all fit in one way. Still, discussions such as these help, so keep up the good work!

Bradford Lee Eden, Journal of Tolkien Research, Thursday, 4 August 2016, ‘A newly-discovered transcript: The 1995 Patrick Hobson Memorial Lecture of Rev. John F.R. Tolkien

Stuart Lee, BBC Radio 4, Saturday, 6 August 2016, ‘Tolkien: The Lost Recordings
The show that was announced last month. Still available for listening on 17 September ...

Elizabeth Hasseler, Saturday, 6 August 2016, ‘‘Do You Not Know I am a Healer?’ Royal Authority and Miracles of Healing in High Medieval Lives of Kings
While Aragorn's healing powers, within the Tolkien's sub-creation itself, stems from his descendance from Lúthien, in external terms, they place him firmly in medieval tradition.

Anna Smol, Sunday, 7 August 2016, ‘Talks on Tolkien II: Patrick Curry on Enchantment & Hypermodernity

Edmund Weiner, Monday, 8 August 2016, ‘Did Tolkien invent Fonwegian?
The discussion is carried on in Edmund Weiner, Wednesday, 10 August 2016, ‘Fonwegian—a rejoinder
This is something I would have liked to be able to address at some greater length, but maybe later …. So far, I am leaning towards Weiner's position on this: given the evidence so far, the explanation offered by Fimi and Higgins just doesn't ‘feel right’ to me (which is absolutely not a scientific argument at all!)

Anna Smol, Tuesday, 16 August 2016, ‘Talks on Tolkien II: Dimitra Fimi on Tolkien & Childhood Studies

Sophia Cornelia Mösch, Medievalist.net, Sunday, 21 August 2016, ‘Augustine of Hippo and the Art of Ruling in the Carolingian Imperial Period
A 2015 Ph.D. dissertation from King's College London.

Douglas A. Anderson, Saturday, 27 August 2016, ‘Tolkien's Desks


Commentary

John D. Rateliff, Saturday, 6 August 2016, ‘Tolkien & Burroughs, Lupoff & Green

Lynn Forest-Hill, Wednesday, 10 August 2016, ‘Last Meeting in July

John D. Rateliff, Wednesday, 10 August 2016, ‘Ace vs. Ballantine, 1962

Lynn Forest-Hill, Sunday, 14 August 2016, ‘First Meeting in August
Also see the two following posts, which contain comments to this part.

The Battle of the Pelennor Fields
by Tomás Hijo
Joseph Pearce, The Imaginary Conservative, Tuesday, 16 August 2016, ‘Celebrating Tolkien and Lewis

David Russell Mosley, Patheos, Thursday, 11 August 2016, ‘Darkness in Elfland: Tolkien on Whether Fairies Are Demons and a (Hopefully) Fuller Account of Enchantment

Anna Smol, Friday, 12 August 2016, ‘“something has gone crack”; Tolkien on Rob Gilson & the TCBS, 100 years ago today.

Jacob Clifton, TOR.com, Wednesday, 17 August 2016, ‘I Have Forgiven Aslan for Being Jesus, But I Still Hate Fairytales
I am less forgiving (unable to enter the state of Literary Belief – not even by painstaking suspension of disbelief) of Lewis' Narnia books, but on the other hand, I never blamed fairy-stories as such.

Matthew Walther, The Federalist, Friday, 26 August 2016, ‘Tolkien Influenced Rock More Than The Velvet Underground Did

Dimitra Fimi, Monday, 29 August 2016, ‘Paul McCartney's “The Fool on the Hill”, Tolkien's early drawings, and the Rider-Waite Tarot

Lynn Forest-Hill, Tuesday, 30 August 2016, ‘Last meeting in August

John D. Rateliff, Wednesday, 31 August 2016, ‘The Return of "Tolkienian Gloom"

David P. Goldman, PJ Media, Wednesday, 31 August 2016, ‘Why Did Tolkien Care About the Jews?
I wish that people would see Tolkien's comments about Dwarves and Jews for what they are. In his early Silmarillion and in The Hobbit the Dwarves are based on the Dwarves of the Old Norse mythology (their names are a dead give-away, you know). When Tolkien, while writing The Lord of the Rings added some new layers to these Nordic Dwarves (because he needed at least Durin's folk to be less avaricious and vindictive than their Norse models), he probably did so without conscious model at first, but came to realise that he had given them some certain linguistic and cultural characteristics that were reminiscent of the Jews. His comments must be seen in this light – nothing about the Dwarves that is part of their portrayal in the Silmarillion work prior to 1937 and The Hobbit can be used to indicate anything about Tolkien's thoughts about Jews. Nothing!


Reviews and Book News

Michael Straight, New Republic, 16 January 1956, ‘The Fantastic World of Professor Tolkien
On-line reprint of a 1956 review of The Lord of the Rings.

Jeffrey R. Hawboldt, Monday, 1 August 2016, ‘Tolkien Tuesday: "The Fall of Arthur"

Andrew Higgins, Journal of Tolkien Research, Wednesday, 10 August 2016, ‘Parma Eldalamberon XXII (2015), by J.R.R. Tolkien

John D. Rateliff, Wednesday, 17 August 2016, ‘The New Arrival (LEAF BY NIGGLE)


Tolkienian Artwork

Tomás Hijo, Monday, 1 August 2016, ‘The Man in the Moon was drinking deep

Peter Xavier Price, Monday, 1 August 2016, ‘The Witch-king of Angmar

Thorin's Song – last panel
by Tomás Hijo
Elena Kukanova, Wednesday, 3 August 2016, ‘Angamaitë
Angrod in Valinor ...

Elena Kukanova, Wednesday, 3 August 2016, ‘Irmo Lórien

Tomás Hijo, Thursday, 4 August 2016, ‘Returning to Middle Earth.

Joe Gilronan, Friday, 12 August 2016, ‘Radagast The Brown "In search of enlightenment"..

Tomás Hijo, Saturday, 20 August 2016, ‘The Middle Earth Beer & Music Festival
“Proofing my latest piece, wich is for The Middle Earth Beer & Music Festival of Clitheroe, Lancashire (UK).”

Tomás Hijo, Monday, 22 August 2016, ‘The Middle-earth Beer & Music Festival

Tomás Hijo, Tuesday, 23 August 2016, ‘Thorin's Song – last panel

Tomás Hijo, Wednesday, 24 August 2016, ‘Thorin's Song – full print

Elena Kukanova, Thursday, 25 August 2016, ‘Forge

Manuel Castañón , Thursday, 25 August 2016, ‘Chartreuse

Tomás Hijo, Thursday, 25 August 2016, ‘Good news and bad

Tomás Hijo, Friday, 26 August 2016, ‘The most difficult block ...

Elena Kukanova, Tuesday, 30 August 2016, ‘Ork - sketch

Jenny Dolfen, Wednesday, 31 August 2016, ‘Calendars 2017!


Story Internal (Ardalogy)

Michael Martinez, The Tolkien Society, Tuesday, 2 August 2016, ‘Answers to the Terence Tiller Tolkien Trivia Questions
Clever … :-)

Michael Martinez, Monday, 15 August 2016, ‘Were All the Great Elven Artifacts Evil?

Michael Martinez, Thursday, 18 August 2016, ‘Can Melkor Ever Return?

Éomer
by Katarzyna Chmiel-Gugulska

Other Stuff

Marissa Martinelli, Slate, Thursday, 4 August 2016, ‘Stephen Colbert Explains How Gandalf Is a Maia Who's Been in Arda Since Ilúvatar Cried “Eä!”
Colbert's reputation as a Tolkien lover is undoubtedly fully and richly deserved, but his reputation as a Tolkien expert is not quite as justified. Obviously he knows more than his ‘big three’ and he has paid attention to what he has read, but his knowledge is not exhaustive, and his explications are often flawed (as e.g. with details of his earlier comments on Gollum, or in the present clip, his failure to understand the nature of Gandalf's trust in providence or the nature of the Istari's recollection of their time as Maiar) – as is his Elvish, by the way: Do not adopt his pronunciation!
See also John D. Rateliff, Saturday, 27 August 2016, ‘Stephen Colbert is Brilliant (Frodo & the Ring)
Fortunately I can see from the comments-stream that I am not the only one to be somewhat less impressed than Rateliff …


Arwen Kester, Middle-earth News, Wednesday, 17 August 2016, ‘My Own Shire: Living a Hobbit Life in the Modern World
It is curious, interesting, and wonderful how we engage with Tolkien's work in so many different ways. For me, the Shire is a place of insular myopia and narrowmindedness – I can barely stand Sam – but for others it is a place of rest and beauty. I do not wish to imply that there is any right or wrong, but only emphasise the value and wonder of the differences.


In Print

My records show that I have received my monthly Beyond Bree, and my July issue of Amon Hen did arrive by mail in August, though I had downloaded it from the Tolkien Society web-site in July. Unfortunately, I have not had time to read these.


Web Sites

Kip Rasmussen: Illustrator


The Blog Roll

These are blogs you really should be following yourself if you're interested in Tolkien ...
Contents from these blogs will only be reported here if there is something that I find particularly interesting, or posts that fit with a monthly theme. However, you will find below links to monthly archives of posts for months where the blog has featured interesting posts with at least some Tolkien connection. In some cases you may find a headline for a post, if I wish to recommend it particularly.

The Man in the Moon was drinking deep
by Tomás Hijo
Dimitra Fimi, ‘Dr. Dimitra Fimi
Archive of posts from August 2016

Douglas A. Anderson, ‘Tolkien and Fantasy
Archive of posts from August 2016

John D. Rateliff -- ‘Sacnoth's Scriptorium
Archive of posts from August 2016

David Bratman, ‘Kalimac's Journal
Archive of posts from August 2016

Jenny Dolfen, ‘Jenny's Sketchbook
Archive of posts from August 2016

Anna Smol, ‘A Single Leaf
Archive of posts from August 2016

Edmund Weiner, ‘Philoloblog
Archive of posts from August 2016

Various, The Mythopoeic Society
News archive

Various (Bradford Eden, ed.) Journal of Tolkien Research (JTR)
Archive of contributions for the on-going volume 2, issue 1

Various, The Tolkien Society (TS)
Archive of posts from August 2016

Simon Cook, Ye Machine
Archive of posts from August 2016

Southfarthing Mathom
Archive of posts from August 2016
Thorin's Song
by Tomás Hijo

Various, The Mythopoeic Society, ‘The Horn of Rohan Redux
Archive of posts from August 2016

Sue Bridgwater, ‘Skorn
Archive of posts from August 2016

Tom Hilman, ‘Alas, not me
Archive of posts from August 2016

Michael Martinez, ‘Middle-earth
Archive of posts from August 2016

Bruce Charlton, ‘Tolkien's The Notion Club Papers
Archive of posts from August 2016

Various, ‘Middle-earth News
Archive of posts from August 2016

Sources

No new sources in August 2016

For older sources, see http://parmarkenta.blogspot.com/p/sources.html

Currently reading:
Beowulf: A Translation and Commentary by J.R.R. Tolkien edited by Christopher J.R. Tolkien.
Læringsteorier: Seks Aktuelle Forståelser edited by Knud Illeris

The Witch-king of Angmar
by Peter Xavier Price