A core message of J.R.R. Tolkien’s canon concerning the human and non-human global community appears in The Lord of the Rings when Gandalf addresses the Captains of the West, as they prepare their plans to march on the Black Gate of Sauron the ecosadist. Within this quotation, Gandalf urges the Captains to, whenever possible, weed what, whom, when, and where they can. Throughout the various Ages of Middle-earth, Tolkien exhorts his characters (and his readers) to weed and remove “the evil” within their bodies, their minds, and their spirits, as well as the world around them. Tolkien’s Middle-earth Legendarium highlights how selfishness, more than any other negative trait, can lead individuals and people groups to adopt and increasingly exhibit ecosadistic beliefs and attitudes, which, in turn, causes these morally compromised individuals and groups to commit acts of ecocide. Negative traits like ignorance, callousness, and laziness often reinforce the evil of selfishness in Tolkien’s Middle-earth tales, and therefore, often contribute to the destruction of the physical environment as well. These intellectual, moral, ethical, and spiritual failings, therefore, cause considerable damage to the wilderness, rural, and urban environments of Middle-earth (as they do in our world) due to insufficient political, cultural, and ideological weeding. Thus, Tolkien’s Middle-earth fantasies explore what comprises beneficial work, while offering messages of cautious hope for the future. Tolkien’s texts explain that quality environmental guardianship must consider not only the well-being of the individual but also the well-being of small groups, local communities, nations, groups of nations, and the whole world. Tolkien builds from Judeo-Christian practices, from previous historical eras, and from the ideas of his episteme to create his fantastic visions and the environmental ideologies within his Middle-earth texts. Tolkien’s works, moreover, serve as partial precursors to a vast array of contemporary ecophilosophies, for these ecophilosophies condemn selfishness, in general, and callousness, in particular. Both Tolkien’s writings and the works of contemporary ecocritics, on the other hand, often argue that humans must strive to better understand and satisfy the needs of the marginalized, in general, and non-human nature, in particular, to an even greater degree.
|Commitee:||Eldevik, Randi, Murphy, Tim, Wadoski, Andrew, Weimer, Christopher|
|School:||Oklahoma State University|
|School Location:||United States -- Oklahoma|
|Source:||DAI-A 81/3(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||British and Irish literature, Ethics, Sustainability|
|Keywords:||Christianity, Environment, Philosophy, Tolkien, J. R. R., The Lord of the Rings|
Copyright in each Dissertation and Thesis is retained by the author. All Rights Reserved
The supplemental file or files you are about to download were provided to ProQuest by the author as part of a
dissertation or thesis. The supplemental files are provided "AS IS" without warranty. ProQuest is not responsible for the
content, format or impact on the supplemental file(s) on our system. in some cases, the file type may be unknown or
may be a .exe file. We recommend caution as you open such files.
Copyright of the original materials contained in the supplemental file is retained by the author and your access to the
supplemental files is subject to the ProQuest Terms and Conditions of use.
Depending on the size of the file(s) you are downloading, the system may take some time to download them. Please be