Tolkien and middle-earth: Midterm test
Answer two of the following questions in 400-450 words each. Since this test is take-home, take advantage of texts and notes by correctly spelling names and places, and using specifics and even direct quotations where appropriate.
- “Akallabêth” is the rare Tolkien tale that actually includes the practice of religion. Although this story contains a couple of Tolkien’s favorite themes, like the dangers of pride or hubris, it demonstrates one unique motivation. What propels the Fall of the Númenoreans, and how does it relate to Tolkien’s spiritual concerns?
- Fëanor and Thorin Oakenshield appear in different books and in different ages of Middle-earth, and they belong to different races, yet they ultimately demonstrate similar flaws. Draw the parallels in reference to Tolkien’s standard themes.
- Bilbo Baggins begins as a somewhat child-like and inept hero, but he grows throughout the course of the novel. Describe his maturation as hero, and show how the theme and style of the narrative change in the process.