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date: 01 June 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Scholars have long recognized the many ways in which Tolkien based his Lord of the Rings novel on medieval texts such as Beowulf and the Prose Edda. Tolkien borrowed directly from these works, but he also to some extent replicated what he held to be their fundamental worldview. It is in this sense that we may speak of the deep or structural medievalism of Tolkien’s novel. Central to this deep medievalism is the dialectical relationship between history and myth, a dialectic that is framed as a process of (dis)enchantment. This chapter will examine the ways in which this dialectic finds expression in the soundscape for the voice-over prologue to The Fellowship of the Ring and the extent (if any) to which Tolkien’s deep medievalism may pass into the cinematic realm.

Keywords: J. R. R. Tolkien, Lord of the Rings, Beowulf, Prose Edda, myth

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