Recent writings from the Ink Desk
August 15th, 2012Just Imagine.by Dena Hunt
Joseph’s post lamenting the state of England’s culture, vividly displayed at the Olympics, generated an extraordinary number of comments. Almost all of them were in sympathy; the two or three that objected were comically childish sputterings of indignation.» Continue Reading
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From the Ink Desk
Linguistics vs. Languageby Dena Hunt
There are those academics housed in English Departments who are called linguists and who maintain a staunchly scientific view of language that is often as rigid as the rabidly anti-intelligent design folks over in the Science Building. They’re not much interested in the Philosophy of Language (which is relegated to increasingly rare departments of philosophy), have little to no interest in literature as art (or in philology; e.g., Tolkien), except insofar as it provides opportunities to accumulate more data on evolutionary syntax or diction. Semantics is an interesting area, in that it provides so much opportunity for sociolinguists to extrapolate politically correct findings from exhaustive studies of the effects of colonialism on native cultures. They operate pretty much on the definitive formula language=communication, which places parameters around the field, protecting it from contamination by logos while opening up a world of dissertation possibilities along political/economic/sociological/anthropological lines, providing yet another chance of “proving” absolutely anything you want to prove via “data.”
Tolkien, Catholicism and the Jackson Moviesby Joseph Pearce
I've just received an interesting and encouraging e-mail from an admirer of Tolkien who asks for my opinion of the Jackson movies. Here's an abridged version of her e-mail and my reply.
Chilling Thoughts for Tolkien Fansby Brendan D. King
On this site, I have often gone on record as both critic and a satirist of Peter Jackson's Tolkien travesties. From letting the Catholic out of the Baggins to the dumbing down of the dialogue, Peter Jackson's film treatments would not have received an enthusiastic reception had the creator of Middle Earth still been alive. They would have prompted, at the very least, an outraged letter from Tolkien, who would have demanded that Peter Jackson "show a little respect for the author." (See "The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien", #210, Tolkien's Comments on Morton Grady Zimmerman's 1958 Film Treatment for "The Lord of the Rings").