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Course Description

Summer 2020 • Grade 7 and above • Literature Sequence

Looking at Middle-earth

Based on the books, not the movies, this course considers many facets of J. R. R. Tolkien’s mythic creation, especially as embodied in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. (Acquaintance with The Silmarillion or the multi-volume History of Middle-earth won’t go amiss, but is not required.) In a fairly free and un-pressured context, we look at Tolkien’s world-building, his use of language, his theology of “subcreation”, and certain facets of his life and professional work as a philologist that have a bearing on the vision he created. I’ve been a fan of Tolkien’s works since I was thirteen, and never tire of sharing them with a new generation.

Course Website: Looking at Middle-earth

Sections and Teachers

Section 1:

Instructor: Bruce McMenomy

Starts: June 16, 2020
Ends: August 11, 2020

Tuesday 1:00 PM to 2:30 PM ET

Tuition: $250.00



Textbooks and Materials

This textbook is required:

The Hobbit: or There and Back Again , Authors: J. R. R. Tolkien

ISBN: 0618002219

Best sources: Scholars Online Bookstore


This textbook is required:

The Lord of the Rings , Authors: J. R. R. Tolkien

ISBN: 0618640150

Best sources: Scholars Online Bookstore

Other information: Any edition will suffice.


This book is recommended but not required and its use is optional:

The Silmarillion , Authors: J. R. R. Tolkien

ISBN: 0345325818

Best sources: Scholars Online Bookstore

Other information: Not required, but the next logical step after reading The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.


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Classes start August 31, 2020. Enroll by August 20 to attend orientation to avoid late enrollment fees.


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