Sunday, July 12, 2015
I tried to listen to a reading of JRR Tolkien's Silmarillion, his founding myth for Middle Earth.
I am not unfamiliar with the creation mythology genre, having re-worked and re-edited the whole Bible for my Gnostic self some years ago. It is a passtime that "dissatisfied theologian-poets" have been known to indulge in.
But it seemed to me that the Tolkien story was really just two things. First, a thinly fleshed-out theogony like the "begats" of the Bible, all done in chronological sequence and elevated King James style, and well, with not enough non-linear narrative detail to keep your interest. Second, he was primarily a linguist and I got the sense, with all the names and naming and secondary names in this or that tongue he invented, that it was really the sound of these words that inspired him, that the story was a kind of vehicle to show off the vocabulary.
Arrogant of me to take this attitude, but, well, that's how ExCathedra rolls.
Impressive work, but not compelling. Unlike the Rings trilogy, which was far more evocative.
at 4:28 PM