April Ann E. Canlas
A Comparative Analysis between the Fantasy Epic the Lord of the Rings and the World War
The Lord of the Rings is an epic fantasy trilogy that revolves around the world called the “Middle-Earth” wherein men, elves, dwarves, hobbits and many other magical creatures reside. Written by the late English writer J.R.R. Tolkien, the novel has made a huge name not only in the world of literature but also in the world of motion pictures. Tolkien, the novel’s author, was a war veteran during The Great War (World War I). He talked about how on a battlefield you would see dead men and boys, eyes blankly staring up at the sky, never to see again. Tolkien was greatly affected by the war, both mentally and physically. Many of his friends were killed during the war. He later came down with a trench fever, a disease carried by body lice which was plentiful in No Man’s Land during the WWI. He then started to record his horrible experiences during his time of service which later surface in his works.
Tolkien’s military career and on-field experiences play an important role in the Lord of the Rings. Though the author himself stated that his novels are not related in any way nor are they an allegory of the World War, critics, readers and several researchers believe that the events he experienced during the World War has severely affected him consciously and unconsciously. “It seems almost impossible that Tolkien's experience of trench warfare did not inform his writing about Frodo's journey through Mordor. His images of the technological despoiling the natural, which pervade the book, also seem linked to his experiences in the war.” (Unknown, 2004) “When one refuses to consider the influence of contemporary history and politics on a writer’s artistic production, the reason might be fear that to admit such influences could lead to the denial or under-valuation of other sorts of influence: ancient...
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