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War and the Works of J.R.R. Tolkien (Contributions to the Study of Science Fiction & Fantasy) Hardcover – 30 Jun 2004


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Review

"[C]roft demonstrates that to lodge Tolkien's writings squarely in the genre of war literature is to overlook the complexity and ambiguity in his depictions of the epic struggle between good and evil....Croft makes a convincing case for Tolkien's complex and highly inconsistent perspectives on war. Close readings, a comparison with Jackson's films, biographical background, and studies of working drafts bolster Croft's conclusions....Clearly written and extensively researched, this informative book makes an important contribution to Tolkien studies. Highly recommended. Lower-division undergraduates through faculty; general readers."-Choice

"[S]cholarly and perceptive."-Times Literary Supplement

"War and the Works of J.R.R. Tolkien presents a comprehensive and successful attempt by Janet Croft to investigate the influence of the two World Wars on the work of J.R.R. Tolkien as well as his attitudes to war."-Inklings

"[C]roft's book is a welcome addition to the debate on the interface between Tolkien's art and the modern world, enlarging our view of the influence of his war experiences, and reminding us that therein lies a major factor in his contemporary appeal."-Tolkien Studies

"ÝS¨cholarly and perceptive."-Times Literary Supplement

"ÝC¨roft's book is a welcome addition to the debate on the interface between Tolkien's art and the modern world, enlarging our view of the influence of his war experiences, and reminding us that therein lies a major factor in his contemporary appeal."-Tolkien Studies

"ÝC¨roft demonstrates that to lodge Tolkien's writings squarely in the genre of war literature is to overlook the complexity and ambiguity in his depictions of the epic struggle between good and evil....Croft makes a convincing case for Tolkien's complex and highly inconsistent perspectives on war. Close readings, a comparison with Jackson's films, biographical background, and studies of working drafts bolster Croft's conclusions....Clearly written and extensively researched, this informative book makes an important contribution to Tolkien studies. Highly recommended. Lower-division undergraduates through faculty; general readers."-Choice

?[S]cholarly and perceptive.??Times Literary Supplement

?[S]cholarly and perceptive.?-Times Literary Supplement

?[S]cholarly and perceptive.?- Times Literary Supplement

?War and the Works of J.R.R. Tolkien presents a comprehensive and successful attempt by Janet Croft to investigate the influence of the two World Wars on the work of J.R.R. Tolkien as well as his attitudes to war.?-Inklings

?[C]roft's book is a welcome addition to the debate on the interface between Tolkien's art and the modern world, enlarging our view of the influence of his war experiences, and reminding us that therein lies a major factor in his contemporary appeal.?-Tolkien Studies

?[C]roft demonstrates that to lodge Tolkien's writings squarely in the genre of war literature is to overlook the complexity and ambiguity in his depictions of the epic struggle between good and evil....Croft makes a convincing case for Tolkien's complex and highly inconsistent perspectives on war. Close readings, a comparison with Jackson's films, biographical background, and studies of working drafts bolster Croft's conclusions....Clearly written and extensively researched, this informative book makes an important contribution to Tolkien studies. Highly recommended. Lower-division undergraduates through faculty; general readers.?-Choice

About the Author

JANET BRENNAN CROFT is Head of Access Services at the University of Oklahoma. Previously, she was Library Director at Martin Methodist College in Tennessee. Her articles have appeared in numerous scholarly journals.


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Amazon.com: HASH(0x9aa67b4c) out of 5 stars 2 reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9b021588) out of 5 stars War and the Works of J.R.R. Tolkien by Janet Brennan Croft 16 Sept. 2004
By B. -. Russell - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
This is the first book to examine war as a central theme in all of Tolkien's works, and is essential reading for Tolkien scholars. Croft brings together Tolkien's experience of both World Wars and his expertise in ancient heroic literature and shows how they influenced what he wrote. She also details how readers and critics have responded to the role and depictions of war in his writings. Some have disparaged Tolkien as a war-monger and others have praised him as a pacifist. Early Tolkien criticism tended to force The Lord of the Rings into a pattern of allegory for World War II, with the Ruling Ring cast as the atom bomb. More recently commentators have seen Tolkien as one of many authors deeply influenced by their experiences in World War I. This book brings these contradictory strands together to demonstrate Tolkien's "well-thought-out, comprehensive, and realistic philosophy of war."

The seven chapters lead us through Tolkien's life, showing how he developed the beliefs about of war that are fundamental to all his works.

1. Introduction

2. The Great War and Tolkien's Memory

3. World War I Themes in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings

4. World War II: "The Young Perish and the Old Linger, Withering"

5. Military Leaders and Leadership

6. "The Dull Backwaters of the Art of Killing": Training, Tactics, Strategy, and Battlefield Communication

7. "War Must Be, While We Defend Our Lives": Philosophy, Pathology and Conclusions

Now every one of us is in the front line of a new war. Croft shows how Tolkien's complex attitude to war is applicable to our present lives: some wars are just wars; true leaders lead from the front; dogged endurance must replace heroic action; and an attitude of mercy can lead to unexpectedly good results.

A number of recent books about Tolkien appear to have been rushed to the marketplace. This one is refreshingly free of typographical errors, and even more important, it has no mistakes about Tolkien's texts.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9bcc499c) out of 5 stars An excellent study 15 Sept. 2004
By another reader - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
of Tolkien's use of material from especially the Great War and his adaptation of it in his works. Croft does make one fairly common mistake: she seems to think that "casualties" means "killed." Thus she avers that on the first day of the Battle of the Somme, the British Army lost 58,000 men killed. Those killed numbered about 19,000. Total casualties (killed, wounded, and missing) totaled about 58,000.
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