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Tolkien

Discussion in 'Novels & Stories' started by AlexanderKira, Nov 25, 2011.

  1. Ravana

    Ravana Istar

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    Technically, it should be "species," yes. Traditionally, there seems to have been an avoidance of that term, in favor of "race," where it involves intelligent beings (or at least intelligent humanoids). Probably for the same reasons we've never adopted the pronoun "it" as an appropriate gender-neutral pronoun for people.

    I'm fairly certain that Saruman's "half-orcs" were only possible through magic, though I'm not sure this is ever specified. Even if not, however, humans and elves can interbreed in Tolkien… which starts to blur the technical line between different species and members of the same one.

    Yeah, but I can't help thinking she still would have been a step up.… ;)

    Is that the movie version? My text has something rather different. In particular, the word "treacherous" doesn't make an appearance, among less important variances.

    The Castilian version would kick ass. Mind posting it? I'd love to see it. (I ran it through Google Translate, and am pretty sure I got a reliable text, if perhaps not as poetic as it could have been. The Catalan one sounds really cool, though; I was surprised it came out so well. Basque, as usual, looks like a train wreck. :p )

    By the way, there wouldn't be any particular need for her to kill Frodo and Sam–at least not in theory: he offers to give her the Ring. Whether he could actually bring himself to part with it might be another story, of course.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 11, 2017
  2. myrddin173

    myrddin173 Maester

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    @Ravana Yes indeed that is the movie version. I put the trilogy in whenever I'm "cleaning" my room, so I have lost count of how many times I have seen that particular scene.

    I don't think it was revealed specifically how they came to be, at least according to here. The Uruk-hai page also mentions the hybridization of Orcs and Men.
     
  3. Sheilawisz

    Sheilawisz Queen of Titania Moderator

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    Well, here it is for you Ravana =)

    Galadriel rió de pronto con una risa clara.

    -La Dama Galadriel es quizá prudente -dijo-, pero ha encontrado quien la iguale en cortesía. Te has vengado gentilmente de la prueba a que sometí tu corazón en nuestro primer encuentro. Comienzas a ver claro. No niego que mi corazón ha deseado pedirte lo que ahora me ofreces. Durante muchos largos años me he preguntado qué haría si el Gran Anillo llegara alguna vez a mis manos, ¡y mira!, está ahora a mi alcance. El mal que fue planeado hace ya mucho tiempo sigue actuando de distintos modos, ya sea que Sauron resista o caiga. ¿No hubiera sido una noble acción, que aumentaría el crédito del Anillo, si se lo hubiera arrebatado a mi huésped por la fuerza o el miedo?

    »Y ahora al fin llega. ¡Me darás libremente el Anillo! En el sitio del Señor Oscuro instalarás una Reina. ¡Y yo no seré oscura sino hermosa y terrible como la Mañana y la Noche! ¡Hermosa como el Mar y el Sol y la Nieve en la Montaña! ¡Terrible como la Tempestad y el Relámpago! Más fuerte que los cimientos de la tierra. ¡Todos me amarán y desesperarán!

    Galadriel alzó la mano y del anillo que llevaba brotó una luz que la iluminó a ella sola, dejando todo el resto en la oscuridad. Se irguió ante Frodo y pareció que tenía de pronto una altura inconmensurable y una belleza irresistible, adorable y tremenda. En seguida dejó caer la mano, y la luz se extinguió y ella rió de nuevo, y he aquí que fue otra vez una delgada mujer elfa, vestida sencillamente de blanco, de voz dulce y triste.

    -He pasado la prueba -dijo-. Me iré empequeñeciendo, marcharé al oeste y continuaré siendo Galadriel.
     
  4. Ravana

    Ravana Istar

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    ¡Gracias! Yes, very nice.

    Reassuring to know (not that I had any doubt) that this was translated by a real human being. How do I know this? One: it's Tolkien–of course it was; it was translated long before there were commercially-available computers. Two: I ran it through Google Translate–which is actually one of the better machine translators. In case anybody ever wondered why you should not use these…:

    Most of it came out right.… :p

    Well, the first time through, at least. Then I put the results back in. Then cycled it a few more times just for fun.

    That's where it stopped doing further damage.

    I don't know about anyone else here, but Sheilawisz is probably laughing herself sick at that last one.… ;) (I'll let her explain if she wants to.)

    Maybe I'll try something else next. German, perhaps. Unfortunately, it does some languages better than others–it has astonishingly limited vocabularies in a few of them–so I'll have to stick with the most common ones to get reliable results of any sort. (By "reliable," I mean ones genuinely illustrative of the limits of translation programs, not ones that fail because the program doesn't even have a full basic dictionary.)

    P.S. You don't even want to know what it did with "empequeñeciendo." :rolleyes:
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 11, 2017
  5. Sheilawisz

    Sheilawisz Queen of Titania Moderator

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    That was very funny, Ravana!! =) I laughed out loud indeed, this is what happens when you use those translators... they mess everything up because only a human translator can really grasp all the little details that are part of human languages- I have worked as a translator sometimes, but I'm not really good at it!!

    When I think in English then my mind is 100% English, and when I think Castilian then English is out of the way =)

    The thing about free and gratis that Ravana mentioned is a curiosity between these two languages, a little difficult to explain- in English, Free can have different meanings: Freedom, to be Free, to do something freely and it can also mean when you don't have to pay money for a service or a product, but in Castilian we would say Libertad, ser libre or hacer algo libremente. The word Gratis is used only for those things or services that are free of charge: a free phone call would be "llamada gratis"

    Those Castilian paragraphs that Ravana got from the automatic translator are a disaster and very funny to read =)
     
  6. Damien

    Damien Dreamer

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    I will give Tolkien credit for bringing the genre to the main stream, but he is by no means the best in the fantasy realm.

    I too have problems with some of his plot holes (ex. Eagles not helping at the beginning, but helping at the end)

    I will give him credit where credit is due. The Hobbit is a great book ! One of the best that I have ever read, but The Lord of the Rings is very hit and miss. The basic story is there, but there are times in this series that I am VERY aware of how long the journey has been (I never do notice how long the journey is taking in books like The Stand, or even The Dark Tower series.) I do not believe it is ever a good thing if the reader is conscious of how long the story is taking. I also feel that all of the side stories to the journey of The Ring come across as pointless. None of the other things that happen in the book matter if the ring does not get destroyed. Side stories should complement the main story, and weave seamlessly within the main story that is being told.

    I know that it seems very arrogant of me be criticizing the writer that gave us one of the best formula's to writing that there has ever been, especially since I am just an unpublished beginning writer myself, but that is how I have always felt on this matter. Thank you for allowing me to say what I feel on it. :)
     
  7. Nah, it's fine. Tolkien's strength was in creating a vast, consistent, thoroughly developed world that felt like it could be a real place (minus the, er, magic and dragons). His writing style is not what most people consider fluid, and he treats his characters more like pieces on a board than like thinking, feeling people. Which, again, is partly an artifact of the time. (And probably also partly an artifact of Tolkien not actually having written a whole lot of novels.)

    This is an example of what I call Classic Syndrome. Something becomes a "classic" for one reason or another (usually because it's revolutionary for the time, or happens to square perfectly with the zeitgeist), and then later generations grow up being told it's a great classic. And yet when they go read that "classic," they aren't really impressed, and then the "classics" get a reputation as boring and stodgy and old-fashioned, at least among those who aren't scholars of the form.

    The, er, classic example of this is Citizen Kane. When it came out, Welles literally revolutionized a lot of filmmaking, inventing numerous techniques for film storytelling -- camera angles and tricks, narrative tricks, etc. (It helped that he told a good story, too.) Kane was hailed as great, and film scholars would always talk about what a great movie it was.

    A generation or three passes. In the late 1990s, a college kid taking a film class watches Citizen Kane on the big screen in a film class at UCLA. He doesn't really get it. Yeah, it's a good story, and Kane is a pretty insane dude, but why was this considered such a classic? There's nothing in this movie that isn't anything the kid has seen before in movies a hundred times, not realizing that those filmmaking tools he's seen in so many films were invented by Welles in this film.

    The upshot is that Kane doesn't have the emotional resonance for that kid that it did for people who saw it closer to when it came out. He now appreciates it for its historical importance, even if he doesn't particularly enjoy watching it.

    Lord of the Rings is similar (although, to be fair, I enjoyed reading LotR a lot more than I enjoyed watching Kane). It revolutionized fantasy literature, and so became hailed as a great classic, and some people reading it today end up thinking it's stilted and boring and why is this so great, I've seen orcs and elves and dwarves and dragons a million times...
     
  8. mirrorrorrim

    mirrorrorrim Minstrel

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    I think there's one important difference between Citizen Kane and The Lord of the Rings: The Lord of the Rings has stood the test of over 50 years' time, with its popularity only growing, not just among critics, by among the general population. Admittedly, Peter Jackson put in some effort to modernize the story's presentation, including cutting out unnecessary tangents and tightening the pacing, but the story of his films was still quintessential Tolkien. The fact that all three books became some of the top 100 movies of all time (#51, #60, and #75, according to Box Office Mojo's All Time Box Office Adjusted for Ticket Price Inflation), nearly 50 years after the books were first written, shows that Tolkien's work transcends his own time in a way few works can. A better comparison might be the works of William Shakespeare, although it's probably still too early to judge (Shakespeare's had 500 years, Tolkien but 50). My guess, though, is that if/when The Lord of the Rings is redone in another twenty years, it'll be just as popular as Jackson's versions are today.

    I feel that's a big part of what makes Tolkien (and Shakespeare) truly timeless–there is so much to his work that no matter how many times you reread or retell it, you can always find a new take or angle to make it fresh and applicable to each new generation.

    At least, that's my opinion. Sorry to disagree.
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2012
  9. I'm a little confused about why you think we're disagreeing on something. Citizen Kane is routinely named the greatest film of all time. It certainly doesn't have the popular momentum that LotR has had since the Jackson films, but that's hardly surprising; it's a personal drama about a megalomaniac, not an epic fantasy about hobbits. :)
     
  10. mirrorrorrim

    mirrorrorrim Minstrel

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    Perhaps I'm just not familiar enough with Citizen Kane. I'm glad we don't disagree, then! :)
     
  11. Alexander Knight

    Alexander Knight Dreamer

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    That would depend on how one defines evil. If in society A everybody works together for the benefit of all and in society B everybody works towards their own benefit only, each society would probably consider the other evil because they are so much different than their own. I think the stated argument assumes each being (orc) is evil by nature and thus their should be some good ones in there somewhere. But if the "evil" comes from the creatures' culture being different, that would not be the case. All would be viewed as evil because all would have been brought up with the mindset that the other culture considered evil.
    We can see something similar in the world today. Some Christians consider all Muslims evil, and vice versa. That doesn't' mean that aren't any intelligent people with free will on either side, it's just a cultural difference that isn't being understood.
    So I guess what I'm trying to say is that the original post sounded like it was assuming evil was the nature of each creature and thus free will would produce some that aren't. But if the evil is cultural then the likelihood of there being a "good" one is much reduced.
     
  12. gerald.parson

    gerald.parson Troubadour

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    I hate reviving old topics, as this one hasn't seen action in nearly a month. But I have read most of the replies within this topic, and I have lengthy discussions with friends and colleagues alike pertaining to Tolkien.
    I must start with saying that I am a fan, I loved the Hobbit and the Trilogy that followed. I read them all (when i was younger) saw the cartoons, and loved the movies.
    Tolkien is grossly over-rated. As is his writing. He created a story, a decent and entertaining one for sure. But the credit he receives is misplaced. As others have posted, there is a great misconception on what he actually "created" and what he didn't. While he may have invented the word "Hobbit" the creature or race was from another writers body of work, I think he called them Snargs or something like that. You can go down the list of the things featured in LotR and find their origins, and they are not from Tolkien. Wargs, Orks, Trolls, all of them.
    I don't have an issue with this at all. And I can't blame Tolkien for other people not being aware of this. But I think my issue is when someone else uses these creatures and they are accused or labeled as a Tolkien knock-off. Or when Tolkien is dubbed the father or fantasy or modern fantasy. I think Tolkien was a very smart man, and well versed on mythology and lure of other cultures, and read many books from his time and before his time, and borrowed heavily from these resources.
     
  13. myrddin173

    myrddin173 Maester

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    Tolkien is rightly called the "Father of Modern Fantasy" because of the undeniable impact he had on the genre. He is not the best, but he was the first. Also they are not called "Tolkien-clones" if they just use the same races, those races have become standards of the genre. Any reader of fantasy worth his, or her, salt knows Tolkien didn't "create" those races but he did put his own spin on them, making them his. Just as any fantasy writer worth his, or her, salt puts their own spin on them. Could you also give some more information on this "Snarg" business?

    Oh and by the way, its not a trilogy.:stomp:
     
  14. gerald.parson

    gerald.parson Troubadour

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    LotR is considered a trilogy, doesnt matter how you want to slice it. It is sold as one, marketed as one, so there for it is one. And thats why I refer to it as one. I know you are debating this because of the "intended structure" but that really is a moot point.

    I guess Stephanie Myers can be called the mother of modern fantasy romance.
    Your obviously a fan, which is cool cause so am I. I really am. You just have the opinion I once had and many still do, he did have an impact, no doubt. But he isn't "the father of modern fantasy" why? because of sales?
     
  15. gerald.parson

    gerald.parson Troubadour

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    Tolkien's concept of hobbits, in turn, seems to have been inspired by Edward Wyke Smith's 1927 children's book The Marvellous Land of Snergs, and by Sinclair Lewis's 1922 novel Babbitt. Via Wikipedia

    http://img-greenbooks.theonering.net/turgon/images/t0700_mother.jpg thats from the snerg book. look familiar?

    The further points of similarity with The Hobbit come in when Gorbo, Sylvia and Joe get lost in the Twisted Trees, which will remind Tolkien-readers of Bilbo and his party getting lost in Mirkwood.

    ‘[The Snergs] are great on feasts, which they have in the open air at long tables joined end on and following the turns of the street. This is necessary because nearly everybody is invited–that is to say, commanded to come, because the King gives the feasts, though each person has to bring his share of food and drink and put it in the general stock. Of late years the procedure has changed owing to the number of invitations that had to be sent; the commands are now understood and only invitations to stay away are sent to the people who are not wanted on the particular occasion. They are sometimes hard up for a reason for a feast, and then the Master of the Household, whose job it is, has to hunt for a reason, such as its being somebody’s birthday. Once they had a feast because it was nobody’s birthday that day.
     
  16. Tolkien considered LotR to be a single novel. It was split into three volumes for marketing reasons, which was the publisher's decision, not Tolkien's. Structurally it's six "books," but it's one long continuous story. So in practical terms, it was a trilogy, but these days you can just as easily find a single-volume trade paperback (that's how I read it in 1999). It's sort of a moot point. It's a trilogy if you have three books; it's not a trilogy if you only have one.

    The typical reason given is that after Lord of the Rings, one observes a marked change in fantasy literature, much of which quite clearly uses LotR as its inspiration. It was an extremely influential novel. You can deny that fact, I suppose, but I don't know why you would.

    Nobody's insisting that you must like LotR, but to claim that it wasn't highly influential flies in the face of the evidence.
     
  17. gerald.parson

    gerald.parson Troubadour

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    Im not bashing Tolkien, I like him, and LotR. I stated that in my first post. But I stand by my position. If anything I would say Lord Dunsany is worthy of that titled seeing how he was one of Tolkiens greatest influence and many others. Tolkiens been propped up by modern era marketing. I give him credit, but I am not going to take away credit from those before him. C.S. Lewis, Fritz Leiber, Dunsany, Tolkien. If anything it should be the "fathers" of modern fantasy.
    I guess what I am saying is we dont go around saying Sylvania is the father of electricity simply because they have sold the most light bulbs.
     
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