The Fellowship of the Ring

J. R. R. Tolkien
The Fellowship of the Ring Cover

Acts of will & inborn humility?


Here's a fragment of my 7000+ words analysis of LOTR. The analysis zooms in on my pet peeve: bollocks in literature on free will & moral choice.

There's also a bit on the movies vs. the book, and on the 800+ page A Reader's Companion by Hammond & Scull.

Please click the link below the read the full thing on Weighing A Pig Doesn't Fatten It.


I'll write a fair bit on what I wrote in my 5500 words analysis of that other monument of speculative fiction, Frank Herbert's Dune:

I have long held the suspicion that what underlies big parts of literature is the way we relate to us being determined. At a basic level, everybody understands that reality is deterministic: if an egg falls, it breaks. If you drink alcohol, your behavior changes. If our heads are chopped off, we die. Physical and chemical laws - via evolution - give rise to biology, behavior and society. That knowledge is a problem for our consciousness, for we feel in control. As freedom is inherent in so many human claims, our basic understanding of reality short circuits with our basic perception of ourselves. It is humanity's most basic problem (...).

It is my firm conviction such is also The Lord Of The Rings most basic problem, and it turns out again that authors are not always the best theoreticians about their own work: Tolkien's writing on his own writing is a mess.