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Following Gandalf: Epic Battles and Moral…

Following Gandalf: Epic Battles and Moral Victory in The Lord of the Rings (2003)

by Matthew T. Dickerson

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I really enjoyed this book. I heard Dickerson at a recent conference and picked up his book. I'm a huge Tolkien fan and enjoyed Dickerson's themes. Morality is central to Tolkien's works, and Dickerson really showed that to be true, through references to LoTR, the Hobbit, the Silmarillion and Tolkien's letters. I really liked his exploration of Gandalf's character. He explored the religious themes in the trilogy, without getting too allegorical, and proves that taking the moral high road is central to the lead good characters. ( )
  kkunker | May 9, 2012 |
I found this book and its thesis fairly novel.
  wisdomlore | Nov 5, 2008 |
I bought this because a reviewer had "complained" that Dickerson referred often to the Silmarillion, but it is poorly written, in both the organization and expression of his ideas. Whether the ideas themselves are interesting I could not read far enough to determine.
  mrkinch | Feb 25, 2007 |
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"The world has changed," begins the mesmerizing voice of Cate Blanchett's Galadriel.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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While the success of J. R. R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings is remarkable, it's certainly no mystery. In a culture where truth is relative and morality is viewed as "old-fashioned," we eagerly welcome the message of these tales: we have free will, our choices matter, and truth can be known. Matthew Dickerson investigates the importance of free will and moral choices in Tolkien's Middle Earth, where moral victory, rather than military success, is the "real" story. He explores Christian themes throughout, including salvation, grace, and judgment. Following Gandalf will delight veteran Tolkien fans and offer new fans an impressive introduction to his major works. Engaging and theologically thought-provoking, it will interest pastors, students, seminarians, and layreaders.… (more)

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