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Tolkien, Race and Cultural History


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Table of Contents

List of Figures Conventions and Abbreviations Introduction PART I: HOW IT ALL BEGAN In the Beginning were the Fairies... 'Fluttering Sprites with Antennae': Victorian and Edwardian Fancies The Fairies, Faith and Folklore PART II: IDEAL BEINGS, IDEAL LANGUAGES The Cat and the Whiskers: Tolkien's Linguistic Creation 'Linguistic Aesthetic': Sounds, Meaning and the Pursuit of Beauty Ideal Languages and Phonetic Spelling PART III: FROM MYTH TO HISTORY The Claim to History A Hierarchical World Visualising Middle-earth: Real and Imagined Material Cultures Epilogue: From Fairies to Hobbits Appendix: 'And Wither Then?': Stepping into the Road Bibliography Index

About the Author

DIMITRA FIMI lectures in English Literature at the University of Wales Institute, Cardiff (UWIC). Her research interests include the history of fantasy literature, folklore and popular culture, literary adaptations, and the interaction between literature and visual culture.


Winner ofthe Mythopoeic Scholarship Award for Inklings Studies 2010

Short listed for the Katharine Briggs Award 2009

'Dimitra Fimi's Tolkien, Race and Cultural History traces the evolution of the legendarium with admirable care...This scholarly yet approachable book is filled with...surprising fragments.' - Jon Barnes, Times Literary Supplement

'Fimi's book reads so well that it's hard to believe that it's an academic tome' - Henry Gee, Mallorn

'constitutes an important contribution to Tolkien studies...the author brings together (often for the first time) relevant research from cultural history and lays out her arguments fair and square...Fimi's book has given us some answers but has also opened up some avenues for future research. What more can we ask for?' Thomas Honegger, Friedrich-Schiller-Universitat, Germany

'...a rich study into Tolkien's creative impulses and the influences that worked on those impulses in the course of a long creative life...any reader interested in the work of J. R. R. in for a treat. The book is intelligently argued and full of interesting ideas and approaches, offering fresh insights into Tolkien's will find plenty of stimulating and thought-provoking material to make the book well worth reading.'

- Nils-Lennart Johannesson, English Today

'Until now, Tolkien has generally been studied in isolation, or as the father of modern fantasy-writing, but this book shows how his work was rooted in the mental world of his contemporaries and the immediately preceding generation. As Tolkien scholarship becomes more analytical, Fimi's study provides essential new insights.' - Jacqueline Simpson, The Folklore Society

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