- 2,99 €
THE RING AND THE CROSS: CHRISTIANITY AND THE LORD OF THE RINGS. Edited by Paul E. Kerry. Madison: Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 2011. 310pp. ISBN 9781611470642. $80.00. The Ring and The Cross is a collection of fifteen papers--plus a dense historiographical introduction--dedicated to exploring and debating the Roman Catholicism of J.R.R. Tolkien, and most especially its place in the analysis of his fantasy writings. It should be noted that the subtitle of the book's cover and that of its cover page differ; the former gives Christianity and "The Lord of the Rings," while the interior has Christianity and the Writings of J.R.R. Tolkien. The latter affords the more accurate scope, as the essays involve a range of works from Tolkien's legendarium. Details from his critical and personal writings are also brought in, as well as a great deal of biographical information. The purpose of the collection--perhaps a little misrepresented by the categorical air of its title--is described by editor and contributor Paul E. Kerry as "a personal effort to bring together opposing views" (7). The Ring and the Cross by no means purports to offer a definitive or exhaustive examination of its topic, something that might easily fill several volumes and fall short even so; as Kerry writes, "[t]his collection is not designed to close off discussion and debate, but rather is an effort to show how lively, engaging, and productive the question of Christian influence on Tolkien's literary works remains" (46). The civility of the discussions--another of Kerry's aims, and not something easy to achieve with such a controversial topic--is for the most part well kept.