In 1997 The Lord of the Rings was voted the twentieth century’s greatest work of literature in the English language, by the customers of Waterstones and viewers of Channel 4.
Now, to mark twenty-five years since his death, this important new biographical appreciation of his life explores the man and his work.
Tolkien: Man and Myth takes a controversial approach to Tolkien’s imaginative literature. Unlike the conventional view that his fantasy writing was an escape from reality, Pearce argues that Tolkien saw his great epics about Middle-earth as a leap into reality. Understanding Tolkien’s view of life, faith and the supernatural is crucial to fully appreciating the deep levels of meaning in his three major works: The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and The Silmarillion.
J. R. R. Tolkien had no more than seven books published during his lifetime and yet he is a towering literary figure around the world. Tolkien: Man and Myth considers him in the context of his time and also his beliefs. It examines his influence upon other story tellers such as C. S. Lewis and the influence upon him of the writers group called the Inklings. Here is a valuable book for all the many fans of ‘the Century’s most popular writer!’
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‘This fine apologia will certainly shift to some degree our polarised view of Ronald Tolkien… Pearce writes beautifully and with great depth… Even Germaine Greer, the great Tolkien-basher, might have second thoughts after reading him.’
Ronald Blythe in
J.R.R. Tolkien's 'The Lord of the Rings' took the first place in a recent national poll to find the greatest book of the century. He may be the most popular writer of our age, but Tolkien is often misunderstood. This major new study of his life, his character and his work reveals the facts and confronts the myths. It explores the background to the man and the culture in which he wrote.
'Tolkien: Man and Myth' observes the relationships that the master writer had with his closest literary colleagues. It reveals his uneasy relationship with C.S. Lewis, the writer of the Narnia books, and the roots of their estrangement.
In this original book about a leading literary life, Joseph Pearce enters the world created by Tolkien in the seven books published during his lifetime. He explores the significance of Middle Earth and what it represented in Tolkien's thinking. Myth, to him, was not a leap from reality but a leap into reality.
Other aspects of his fascinating life troubled Tolkien greatly. The impact of his great notoriety, his relationship with material possessions and his traditional religious faith are all explored, making it possible to understand both the man and the myth he created.
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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Ltd, 1998. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110002740184