Researching Titles for the Enumerative Bibliography

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Researching Titles for the Enumerative Bibliography

Fantasy literature was always something that I had read outside of class, almost guiltily, as if it didn’t constitute “real literature.” Faced with an opportunity, however, in which I could research anything I chose, the prospect of critically engaging a work I had enjoyed since I was in junior high proved too tempting to resist. I chose a topic, then, based on a favorite series of books, Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings. I knew that critics spoke of the series as an allegorical reference to biblical events, but to limit the theology to just Christianity seemed too narrow to me. For the enumerative bibliography, therefore, I researched the idea that, while understanding the Christian undertones to The Lord of the Rings is one key to illuminating the text, other, more pagan ideas are also apparent in Tolkien’s writing.

To begin my research, I went first to the note cards that I had prepared for many of the reference work in the library. After a significant amount of winnowing down, I picked five of the cards and began to search for criticism that would help me understand and build my argument. Unfortunately, I was forced to eliminate two of the cards rather quickly, as they provided no information useful to locating what I needed. Robert Reginald’s Science Fiction and Fiction and Fantasy Literature 1975-1991: A Bibliography of Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror Fiction Books and Nonfiction Monographs was simply a list of primary works and awards, with no critical works included. And while The Cambridge Bibliography of English Literature did include scholarship and criticism relevant to the works it covered, there was no available volume that cover...

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...ersonal Inquiry. Chicago: Henry Regnery, 1964.

Reynolds, Patricia. “Funeral Customs in Tolkien’s Fiction.” Mythlore 72 (1993): 45-53.

Roche, Norma. “Sailing West: Tolkien, the Saint Brendan Story, and the Idea of Paradise in the West.” Mythlore. 66 (1991): 16-20.

Rosebury, Brian. Tolkien: A Critical Assessment. New York: St. Martin’s, 1992.

Sanford, Len. “The Fall from Grace – Decline and Fall in Middle Earth: Metaphors for Nordic and Christian Theology in The Lord of the Rings and The Silmarillion.” Mallorn 32

(1995): 5-14.

Stanton, Michael N. Hobbits, Elves, and Wizards: Exploring the Wonders and Worlds of J.R.R.

Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings. New York: St. Martin’s, 2001.

Tolkien, J.R.R. The Monsters and the Critics, and Other Essays. Ed. Christopher Tolkien.

London: HarperCollins, 1997.

Tree and Leaf. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1965.
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