The Mythopoeic Code of Tolkien

A Christian Platonic Reading of the Legendarium

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About the Book

J. R. R. Tolkien is arguably the most influential fantasy writer of all time—his world building and epic mythology have changed Western audiences’ imaginations and the entire fantasy genre. This book is the first wide-ranging Christian Platonic reading on Tolkien’s fiction. This analysis, written for scholars and general Tolkien enthusiasts alike, discusses how his fiction is constructed on levels of language, myth and textuality that have a background in the Greek philosopher Plato’s texts and early Christian philosophy influenced by Plato. It discusses the concepts of ideal and real, creation and existence, and fall and struggle as central elements of Tolkien’s fiction, focusing on The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion and The History of Middle-earth. Reading Tolkien’s fiction as a depiction of ideal and real, from the vision of creation to the process of realization, illuminates a part of Tolkien’s aesthetics and mythology that previous studies have overlooked.

About the Author(s)

Jyrki Korpua is a teacher and researcher at the University of Turku and the University of Oulu, Finland. He has edited 20+ special issues of journals and published more than 20 articles on literature, video games, graphic novels, and film studies.

Donald E. Palumbo is a professor of English at East Carolina University. He lives in Greenville, North Carolina.

C.W. Sullivan III is Distinguished Professor of arts and sciences at East Carolina University and a full member of the Welsh Academy. He is the author of numerous books and the on-line journal Celtic Cultural Studies.

Bibliographic Details

Jyrki Korpua
Series Editors Donald E. Palumbo and C.W. Sullivan III

Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2021
pISBN: 978-1-4766-7288-5
eISBN: 978-1-4766-4361-8
Imprint: McFarland
Series: Critical Explorations in Science Fiction and Fantasy