The Lord of the Rings and Philosophy: One Book to Rule Them All

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Gregory Bassham, Eric Bronson
Open Court, 2003 - Literary Criticism - 240 pages
5 Reviews
The Lord of the Rings is intended to be applicable to the real world of relationships, religion, pleasure, pain, and politics. Tolkien himself said that his grand tale of wizards, orcs, hobbits, and elves was aimed at truth and good morals in the actual world.
Analysis of the popular appeal of The Lord of the Rings (on websites and elsewhere) shows that Tolkien fans are hungry for discussion of the urgent moral and cosmological issues arising out of this fantastic epic story.
Can political power be wielded for good, or must it always corrupt? Does technology destroy the truly human? Is it morally wrong to give up hope? Can we find meaning in chance events?
In The Lord of the Rings and Philosophy, seventeen young philosophy professors, all of them ardent Tolkien fans and most of them contributors to the four earlier volumes in the Popular Culture and Philosophy series, address some of these important issues and show how clues to their solutions may be found in the imaginary world of Middle-earth. The book is divided into five sections, concerned with Power and the Ring, the Quest for Happiness, Good and Evil in Middle-earth, Time and Mortality, and the Relevance

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - neverstopreading - LibraryThing

This book is a collection of essays on LOTR and various philosophical themes. For an alternative way of looking at the two subjects, look at Peter Kreeft's "Philosophy of Tolkien." Read full review

Review: The Lord of the Rings and Philosophy: One Book to Rule Them All (Popular Culture and Philosophy #5)

User Review  - Brigid DuFay - Goodreads

Entertaining. Used it for my philosophy class. Read full review


The Rings of Tolkien and Plato Lessons in Power Choice and Morality
The Cracks of Doom The Threat of Emerging Technologies and Tolkiens Rings of Power
My Precious Tolkiens Fetishized Rin

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About the author (2003)

Gregory Bassham is Professor and Chair of the Philosophy Department at King's College (Pa.). He is the author or editor of seven books, including The Lord of the Rings and Philosophy (2003), The Ultimate Harry Potter and Philosophy (Wiley, 2010), and The Hobbit and Philosophy (forthcoming 2012). William Irwin is Professor of Philosophy at King's College, author of eleven books, and Series Editor of the Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture series. Henry Nardone is Emeritus Professor of Philosophy at King's College. His publications include scholarly articles on critical thinking and aesthetics. James M. Wallace, Professor of English at King's College, is the author or co-author of two books, including Critical Thinking (4th ed., 2011).

Eric Bronson heads the philosophy and history departments at Berkeley College in New York City. He coedited The Lord of the Rings and Philosophy and contributed to The Simpsons and Philosophy and Seinfeld and Philosophy. He lives in new York City.

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