Project Two first draft

Project Two first draft - Will Hare Professor Byars-Nichols...

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Will Hare Professor Byars-Nichols English 101 18 February 2008 The Racist Ring “One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them, One Ring to bring them all, and in the Darkness bind them.” These immortal words from J.R.R. Tolkien’s 1954 masterpiece The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring echoed throughout history until 2001 when Peter Jackson brought the book to life in the first film of the Oscar-award winning trilogy. These films opened up the books to a whole new generation of literature fans, but perhaps there is more controversy to Tolkien’s apparently harmless story than we would like to believe. There has been a strong movement in the literature realm to expose The Lord of the Rings for being a racist trilogy. Both popular essays and academic essays have been written for and against the argument, and as an avid fan of both the books and the films, I took it upon myself to read into this issue as much as possible. I have discovered one academic source, the essay “Why is the Only Good Orc a Dead Orc? The Dark Face of Racism Examined in Tolkien’s World” by Anderson Rearick which was published by Modern Fiction Studies , and one popular source, the article “’Lord’ of Racism? Critics View Trilogy as Discriminatory.” by David Ibata which was published by the Chicago Tribune . It is my belief that Rearick formulates the better argument because he must write for a different audience, forcing him to use better word choice and conventions of both structure and reference. First off, one of the main differences between the popular essay and the academic essay is that they are both grasping for different audiences. Rearick’s essay, which takes a stance that
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Tolkien’s works are not racist, is clearly intended for a much smaller segment of the academic world. In order to even read Rearick’s essay, you must be subscribed to Modern Fiction Studies, Project MUSE, or be a college student with a library that has access to the Rearick essay. This alone alienates a large segment of the population. According to Project MUSE’s own website, there are roughly 1500 colleges and schools subscribed to Project MUSE worldwide. This means that not only is a small percentage of the population even attending college, but also an even smaller percentage of colleges across the world have access to this collection of articles and information. Meanwhile, Ibata’s article in the Chicago Tribune was published in a public newspaper that only requires one has a little bit of pocket change and access to a newspaper dispenser on the streets of Chicago. Alternatively, Ibata’s article used to be made available for
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Project Two first draft - Will Hare Professor Byars-Nichols...

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