The works of J. R. R. Tolkien have generated a body of research covering many aspects of his fantasy writings. These encompass The Lord of the Rings and The Silmarillion, along with his legendarium that remained unpublished until after his death, and his constructed languages, especially the Elvish languages Quenya and Sindarin. Scholars from different disciplines have examined the linguistic and literary origins of Middle-earth, and have explored many aspects of his writings from Christianity to feminism and race.
Biographies of Tolkien have been written by Humphrey Carpenter, with his 1977 J. R. R. Tolkien: A Biography and of Tolkien's wartime years by John Garth with his 2003 Tolkien and the Great War: The Threshold of Middle-earth. Carpenter edited the 1981 The Letters of J. R. R. Tolkien, assisted by Christopher Tolkien. The brief period after the war when Tolkien worked for the OED is detailed in the 2006 book The Ring of Words: Tolkien and the Oxford English Dictionary by Peter Gilliver, Jeremy Marshall and Edmund Weiner.
On Tolkien's writings edit
A variety of institutions have developed to support Tolkien research. These include The Tolkien Society and The Mythopoeic Society. Tolkien archives are held in the Bodleian Library in Oxford and Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Publishers of scholarly books on Tolkien include Houghton Mifflin, McFarland Press, Mythopoeic Press, Walking Tree Publishers, Palgrave MacMillan, and Kent State University Press.
Early publications on Tolkien's writing were essentially fanzines; some, such as Mythlore, founded in 1969, developed into scholarly peer-reviewed (refereed) technical publications; among the "reputable" journals is Mallorn by the Tolkien Society. Other specialised journals include Tolkien Studies (2004–) and Journal of Tolkien Research (2014–). There are several journals that focus on the literary society The Inklings, of which Tolkien was a member, especially Journal of Inklings Studies (2011–).
In 1992, the Tolkien Society and the Mythopoeic Society held a joint conference for the centenary of Tolkien's birth, combining papers that were published in the conference proceedings, with a mixed programme of events over a period of eight days, 17–24 August 1992, in Oxford. The Mythopoeic Society has been holding conferences in the U.S. (and once in Canada) nearly annually since 1970. In recent years some conferences have been virtual.
Omentielva is a European bi-yearly conference on research into Tolkien's invented languages.
A large literature examines Tolkien's Middle-earth fantasy fiction from numerous points of view, including medievalism, its philological roots in languages such as Old Norse and Old English, its influences from literature of different periods, its poetry, its Christian symbolism, feminism, race, sexuality, and many other themes. These are overviewed in Blackwell's A Companion to J. R. R. Tolkien, which effectively marked his acceptance into the English literary canon.
Constructed languages edit
Tolkien's constructed languages, Quenya and Sindarin, the main languages of Elves, have inspired linguistic research. Parma Eldalamberon and Vinyar Tengwar are published by the Elvish Linguistic Fellowship of the Mythopoeic Society a non-profit organization. The Vinyar Tengwar and Parma Eldalamberon material published at an increasing rate during the early 2000s is from the stock of linguistic material in the possession of the appointed team of editors (some 3000 pages according to them), consisting of photocopies sent them by Christopher Tolkien and notes taken in the Bodleian Library around 1992. An Internet mailing list dedicated to Tolkien's languages, called tolklang, has existed since November 1, 1990.
Major introductory books edit
- Drout, Michael D. C., ed. (2013) . "Tolkien Scholarship: Institutions". J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: Scholarship and Critical Assessment. Routledge. ISBN 978-0-415-86511-1.
- Flieger, Verlyn; Hostetter, Carl F., eds. (2000). Tolkien's Legendarium: Essays on The History of Middle-earth. Greenwood Press. ISBN 978-0-313-30530-6.
- Hammond, Wayne G.; Christina Scull (2005). The Lord of the Rings: A Reader's Companion. HarperCollins. ISBN 978-0-00-720308-6.
- Hammond, Wayne G.; Scull, Christina (2006b). The J.R.R. Tolkien Companion and Guide: Reader's Guide. London: HarperCollins. ISBN 0-007-14918-2.
- Lee, Stuart D., ed. (2020) . A Companion to J. R. R. Tolkien. Wiley Blackwell. ISBN 978-1119656029.
- Olsen, Corey (2012). Exploring J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. ISBN 978-0-547-73946-5.
- Pesch, Helmut W. (2003). Elbisch – Grammatik, Schrift und Wörterbuch der Elben-Sprache J.R.R. Tolkiens (in German). Bergisch Gladbach: Bastei-Lübbe. ISBN 3-404-20476-X.
- Shippey, Tom (1982). The Road to Middle-earth. George Allen and Unwin. ISBN 978-0-04-809018-8. (Revised and expanded 1992, 2005)
- Solopova, Elizabeth (2009). Languages, Myths and History: An Introduction to the Linguistic and Literary Background of J. R. R. Tolkien's Fiction. New York City: North Landing Books. ISBN 978-0-9816607-1-4.
- Tolkien Studies (ISSN 1547-3155, West Virginia University Press)
- Mythlore (ISSN 0146-9339, Mythopoeic Society)
- Journal of Tolkien Research (ISSN 2471-934X, Valparaiso University)
- Mallorn (ISSN 0308-6674, The Tolkien Society)
- Vinyar Tengwar (ISSN 1054-7606, Elvish Linguistic Fellowship)
- "Tolkien Bibliography: 1977 - Humphrey Carpenter - J.R.R. Tolkien: a biography". The Tolkien Library. Retrieved 1 November 2016.
- Garth, John (2003). Tolkien and the Great War: the threshold of Middle-earth. London: HarperCollins. ISBN 978-0-00-711953-0. OCLC 54047800.
- Carpenter, Humphrey, ed. (2000). "Letter 294". The Letters of J. R. R. Tolkien. Houghton Mifflin. ISBN 978-0-618-05699-6.
- Gilliver, Peter (2006). The Ring of Words: Tolkien and the Oxford English Dictionary. Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-861069-4.
- Barella, Cecilia (2013) . "Tolkien Scholarship: Institutions". In Drout, Michael D. C. (ed.). J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: Scholarship and Critical Assessment. Routledge. pp. 656–659. ISBN 978-0-415-86511-1.
- "J R R Tolkien Collection - Marquette University Libraries". Marquette University Libraries. 30 November 2020. Archived from the original on 2022-02-26. Retrieved 25 January 2021.
- Croft, Janet Brennan (2016). "Bibliographic Resources for Literature Searches on J.R.R Tolkien". Journal of Tolkien Research. 3 (1). Article 2.
- Proceedings of The J. R. R. Tolkien Centenary Conference 1992 – separate articles (out of print); – single PDF with index
- GoodKnight, Glen H.; Reynolds, Patricia (15 October 1996). "Editorial". Mythlore. 21 (2): article 1.
- Solopova 2009.
- Drout, Michael D. C., ed. (2006). The J. R. R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: Scholarship and Critical Assessment. New York City: Routledge. pp. xxix–xxx. ISBN 0-415-96942-5.
- Hammond & Scull 2006b.
- Lee 2020.
- Higgins, Andrew (2015). "A Companion to J. R. R. Tolkien, ed. Stuart D. Lee, reviewed by Andrew Higgins". Journal of Tolkien Research. 2 (1). Article 2.
- Bradfield, Julian. "The Tolkien Language List". Quettar.org. Retrieved 25 January 2021.
- Tolkien Studies at West Virginia University Press
- Journal of Tolkien Research
- At its issue #15 , Tolkien Journal merged with Mythlore.
- Vinyar Tengwar
- Petersen, Vibeke Rützou (2012). "Review of Fastitocalon. Studies in Fantasticism Ancient to Modern: Immortals and the Undead 1.2 (2010): 91–200". Journal of the Fantastic in the Arts. 23 (2 (85)): 334–337. ISSN 0897-0521.
- Croft, Janet Brennan (2010). "Review of Fastitocalon: Studies in Fantasticism Ancient to Modern: Immortals and the Undead". Mythlore. 29 (1/2 (111/112)): 188–192. ISSN 0146-9339.
- The home page of the Elvish Linguistic Fellowship, which publishes the journals Parma Eldalamberon, Vinyar Tengwar, and Tengwestie, and sponsors the discussion list, Lambengolmor (discussion list launched 29 May 2002, archives at lambengolmor-l)
- Tolkien's Linguistic Writings and Drafts by Ryszard Derdzinski
- TolkienBooks.net Chronological Book Index - a comprehensive index of Tolkien Publications
- A List of Tolkien's Unpublished and Slightly Published Manuscripts by Lisa Star (concentrates on linguistic materials)
- Publications of the Tolkien Society (UK)
- Tolkien Studies at Signum University
- The Tolkien Professor website, offering free materials from Corey Olsen's courses at Signum University