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The Draw of Elf-Dwarf Romances in Tolkien Adaptations

In all JRR Tolkien’s lore, the Elves and Dwarves are diametrically opposed races. However, in the filmed adaptations of his works, we see an emphasis on the developments their positive relationships.
In The Lord of the Rings, the camaraderie between Gimli and Legolas is a core element of the films, and there’s a not-insignificant amount of fan content created about the possibility of a romantic relationship between them.
In the more recent Hobbit trilogy, a romance was added between Tauriel the elf and Kíli the dwarf prince; one that didn’t exist at all in the book (as Tauriel herself was a new addition to the narrative).
It seems likely that the new Amazon Rings of Power series will also explore dwarven-elven relations (if not relationships) as well.
What about Tolkien’s stories and worldbuilding has people consistently drawing these two sides together? Is it just the appeal of an opposites-attract narrative?

  • I think this is an interesting discussion as it could also be examined for the dichotomous attitudes to racial representations present in both Tolkien's work and the interpretations of his work. – Sarai Mannolini-Winwood 2 years ago
  • This is such an intersting aspect of this series to explore. I personally have not read Lord of the Rings, though my brothers are big fans and I know a bit about this compilation of stories from them. I feel like one of the most powerful things about Tolkein's stories is how they create such fantastical, adventurous tales with roots in very human emotions and ideals. In a way, I think the connection between dwarves and elves is a representation of how people from all walks of life can share the same path, share comrodery and stregnth and joy through trying times. One of the greatest gifts in life is good company, and there is something hopeful and endearing in these connections between dwarves and elves-that differences don't have to be a divider, they can open our eyes to new perspectives, and help us grow for the better. – mmclaughlin102 2 years ago

The Legacy of J.R.R. Tolkien

From constructing his own languages to developing the universum of Middle Earth, J. R. R. Tolkien has left its mark on the literary world, as well as the field of linguistics. It might be interesting to look at how much his work has influenced the fantasy genre. How does Lord of the Rings or The Hobbit compare to newer conceptions like e.g. Game of Thrones? What elements of Tolkien’s work carried on to other fantasy narratives?

  • Another interesting aspect to this topic could be to compare the mythologies underlying Tolkien's work and other more contemporary mythology-based fantasy fiction novels - particularly those that articulate the hero's journey. – Toula 6 years ago

Tolkien's Legendarium and Literature as a Living Body

While the Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings have gained their well-earned places in western literature, Tolkien’s published works were only a small scrap of the material he created and wrote about Middle-Earth over a span of 60 years. Tolkien’s ideas of Middle-Earth’s languages, history, and cultures changed time and time again, even in the span of writing a single short story. Tolkien’s ‘Legendarium’ evolved so frequently that it took a life of its own.

What does Tolkien’s Legendarium teach us about the creative process? Most of the work he created violently contradicted itself, does that impact what we view as ‘canon’? Can having this outside body of work flavor how we read the Lord of the Rings? Do the works published after his death, such as the Simarillion and the Children of Hurin count as Middle-Earth ‘canon’? Was it acceptable for Christopher Tolkien to compile these new books from his father’s works? Since new Tolkien work is being published to this very day, can we say that Tolkien’s stories are still evolving even in the post-Peter Jackson age?

  • Great topic. I'm not a big fan of Tolkien (I tried, but couldn't get into the whole LOTR franchise). That said, I'd be the first to say he is a freaking genius when it comes to creating fantasy worlds. Fantasy authors, IMHO, face unique challenges because along with characters and settings, they have to create the rules and standards for an entire fictitious society, and keep them consistent. Very few can do that. This is also a timely topic, considering how big fantasy still is (Harry Potter, Twilight, Once Upon a Time, Emerald City, you name it). I personally have former colleagues who'd love this article. – Stephanie M. 7 years ago
  • This is a great topic. I would recommend reading what Christopher Tolkien has written about publishing his father's work. If you own some of the works mentioned, you already have access to his introductions. – C8lin 7 years ago