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Old 07-20-2006, 04:16 PM   #7
Illustrious Ulair
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Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: In the home of lost causes, and forsaken beliefs, and unpopular names,and impossible loyalties
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davem is battling Black Riders on Weathertop.davem is battling Black Riders on Weathertop.
Clearly there is depth & meaning in Tolkien's work - if you look for it. Certainly it is moving, but principally it is Art, not didiacticism. I think this is what Pullman fails to grasp. To him the purpose of literature is to teach. The author is a teacher, passing on his wisdom to his readers, telling them the way things are - or should be. Hence, he doesn't argue with Lewis intention, only with the answers he offers. I suspect this is why he has a greater animus against Tolkien - because Tolkien isn't attempting to teach anything in LotR. He is attempting to create a work of Art. Pullman, therefore, cannot argue with Tolkien in the way he can argue with Lewis (hence Lewis is 'redeemable' - ie Pullman feels that if Lewis were still around he could be argued into adopting Pullman's point). What Pullman realises is that he cannot argue with Tolkien, because Tolkien would be simply standing by his Tree & smiling.

Of course, my real problem with Pullman is that what he has to 'teach' is so trivial, so inherently silly & 'PC' that he mostly bores me (I like the daemons, the armoured bears & the witches, but I suspect Pullman would say I was missing the 'deeper' meaning & relevance of the story - though actually those three creations are among the most interesting aspects of his novels).There's nothing more irritating than someone coming up to you & trying to impart their 'wisdom'.

Its the same with the way he always seems to have to keep sticking the boot into Lewis & Tolkien. Who is this guy anyway? He's written one novel that has been taken 'seriously' by a handful of pseuds. Its eqivalent to some amateur dramatist suddenly finding some play of his picked up & performed in the West End & proceeding in every interview to say how terrible & worthless Shakespeare is.

But now I'm digressing.
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