- Taschenbuch: 256 Seiten
- Verlag: HarperCollins; Auflage: New Ed (1. April 2007)
- Sprache: Englisch
- ISBN-10: 026110263X
- ISBN-13: 978-0261102637
- Größe und/oder Gewicht: 12,9 x 1,7 x 19,8 cm
- Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 1 Kundenrezension
- Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 11.865 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)
The Monsters and the Critics: And Other Essays. J.R.R. Tolkien (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 1. April 2007
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This book presents a complete collection of Tolkien's essays, including two on Beowulf, which span three decades beginning six years before "The Hobbit" to five years after "The Lord of the Rings". The seven 'essays' by J.R.R. Tolkien assembled in this new paperback edition were with one exception delivered as general lectures on particular occasions; and while they mostly arose out of Tolkien's work in medieval literature, they are accessible to all. Two of them are concerned with Beowulf, including the well-known lecture whose title is taken for this book, and one with Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, given in the University of Glasgow in 1953. Also included in this volume is the lecture in English and Welsh; the Valedictory Address to the University of Oxford in 1959; and a paper on Invented Languages delivered in 1931, with exemplification from poems in the Elvish tongues. Most famous of all is On Fairy-Stories, a discussion of the nature of fairy-tales and fantasy, which gives insight into Tolkien's approach to the whole genre.The pieces in this collection cover a period of nearly thirty years, beginning six years before the publication of "The Hobbit", with a unique 'academic' lecture on his invention (calling it A Secret Vice) and concluding with his farewell to professorship, five years after the publication of "The Lord of the Rings".
Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende
J.R.R.Tolkien (1892-1973) was a distinguished academic, though he is best known for writing The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings and The Silmarillion, plus other stories and essays. His books have been translated into over 30 languages and have sold many millions of copies worldwide.
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Apart from insights about the creation of the Elvish languages, references to his own books are scarce, however,
and people who are interested solely in 'Middle Earth' will probably be disappointed - or else surprised, as I was,
to find that Tolkiens thoughts on (more or less) 'academic' subjects can be just as enchanting as his invented stories.
I started to read the book out of a mild interest in the author,
as I have loved the 'Lord of the Rings' and 'The Hobbit' since I read them as a child,
and was astonished at how much I enjoyed some of his essays.
This edition contains:
Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics
On Translating Beowulf
Sir Gawain and the Green Knight
English and Welsh
A Secret Vice
As I'm not familiar with Beowulf, I must admit I skipped those essays.
I didn't know Sir Gawain and the Green Knight either, but the full text can be found in the web,
and after reading the story I enjoyed Tolkiens take on it very much.
'On Fairy-Stories' and 'A Secret Vice' (about his passion for inventing languages) are the essays I enjoyed most.
The book is definitely more than worth buying, just for those two.
You don't need any special prior knowledge to appreciate them, though 'A Secret Vice' touches on linguistics.
Tolkiens style is incomparable.
He has the gift of expressing complex thoughts in an endearingly simple, and yet beautiful, way.
He lures you (mostly along meandering bypaths :) into the world of one of the most imaginative authors ever,
and allows you to catch a glimpse of his fascinating personality.
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Review by the author of A Draft of Moonlight
Tolkein's love for these works and topics cannot be understated. He laments that too much emphasis is placed on dissecting rather than appreciating Beowulf, and his discussion of Sir Gawain is again full of love and awe. This is contagious, and one cannot help reading this and want to go back and read the works again.
While the fields of philology relating to epic poetry have moved ahead at a lightening pace since Tolkein's time, and hence some of his statements are rather dated, most of the material is still solid and the sense of appreciation lives on.
In the words of a Scandinavian poet:
The self dies too;
I know one that does not die:
The glory of the dead man.
These works are glorious and every medieval lit fan should read them.