Is "The Lord of the Rings" racist?

Discussion in 'Debates' started by Anduril, Dec 25, 2003.

  1. Iluvatar2004

    Iluvatar2004 New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2005
    Messages:
    58
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0 / 0 / -0
    OK time for me to speak my part about this stupid, ill thought out, poorly written article by an insane man who has no life...what the hell was going through his mind when he wrote that...tolkien is soooo not racist...i liked the earlier point about legolas and gimlis friendship being an example of overcoming racism. Also, heres something to think about mr. Hart, you douche : DONT BE SO FREAKING LITERAL!!!!! yes sure, maybe lands that are supposed to represent the middle east are darker and have tendencies that seem like the middle east, but that doesnt mean he was mocking middle easterners idiot!....i mean, the people who are supposed to be English are comprised of , short people, with hairy feet....you think tolkien was being racist there ass? because ud be a hypocrit against what u said if u didnt....and last time i checked, there isnt a bunch of Euros with big pointy ears. That article was so appaling to read. I cannot believe i actually managed to get thru it
     
  2. Liadan

    Liadan Insert Title Here

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2005
    Messages:
    14,968
    Likes Received:
    124
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Arizona
    Ratings:
    +124 / 0 / -0
    Ah, yes, the bigoted "learned" Dr. Saphiro. I did a research paper on fantasy and included about the Tolkien-Racism thing. FOR GOD'S SAKE, WHAT IS HIS PROBLEM?! He says that the Elves are "white" "fair-skinned", etc., while the orcs are "black" and "ugly."
    Please... please... don't inflict us with this (two expletives deleted).
    If someone's actually interested in this, umm, trash, here's the link:
    http://www.rediff.com/news/2003/jan/08lord.htm
     
  3. Wanderer00

    Wanderer00 New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2005
    Messages:
    46
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0 / 0 / -0
    i though tolkien was in WW2 or some such thing not his son
     
  4. Crusader

    Crusader Disturber of the Peace

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2003
    Messages:
    12,265
    Likes Received:
    91
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Englands Green and Pleasant Lands
    Ratings:
    +91 / 0 / -0
    tolkien was in WW1
     
  5. Galadriel71

    Galadriel71 New Member

    Joined:
    May 23, 2005
    Messages:
    216
    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Ratings:
    +4 / 0 / -0
    I am glad somebody noticed that, because Easterlings have peace with Gondor many years after the War of the Ring in the Forth Age.
     
  6. Gil-Galad_360

    Gil-Galad_360 Aran Noldorin

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2006
    Messages:
    4,013
    Likes Received:
    19
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Mirkwood, keeping the woods free of Morgoth's mini
    Ratings:
    +19 / 0 / -0
    I agree, In Tolkien is not a matter of races, is a matter of which side are you on, what he was relly trying to do was to personify evil, and still even "non-evil characters" have an essence of evil within themselves, take for example Galadriel when she gets tempted by the ring. (On the book)
     
  7. Gil-Galad_360

    Gil-Galad_360 Aran Noldorin

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2006
    Messages:
    4,013
    Likes Received:
    19
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Mirkwood, keeping the woods free of Morgoth's mini
    Ratings:
    +19 / 0 / -0
    The guy who sad that is definetly out of his mind
     
  8. Galad

    Galad Lord of The Light.

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2006
    Messages:
    99
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Wherever my imagination takes me
    Ratings:
    +1 / 0 / -0
    What a load of BULL!! Im sorry but that really riles me up! how DARE he! he obviously dosent know what he is on about! Theoden dosent say that! no one does! all i can think of is aragorn saying "I bid you stand! men of the west!" AND he should do his research because if you have the extended editions it says how WETA didnt want the Haradrim and Easterlings to looklike africans or hindus. they went to great length to specifically AVOID that! *Lets out slow and calm breath* WHAT A........ *trail off as head explodes with the sheer stupidity of that dude's theory.*
     
  9. bennyhils

    bennyhils Cause it takes a Lot

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2006
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    South Africa
    Ratings:
    +0 / 0 / -0
    The mouth reveals whats in the heart. Or rather one sees what one wants to believe. If the best he can do is write some derogatory article about what many believe to the greatest fantasy noval of modern literature...
     
  10. bennyhils

    bennyhils Cause it takes a Lot

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2006
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    South Africa
    Ratings:
    +0 / 0 / -0
    Yup, he is an idiot and didn't get enough attention as a child- I mean, next his going to say walt disney is racist.
     
  11. Anakin

    Anakin King of TFF

    Top Poster Of Month

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2004
    Messages:
    35,087
    Likes Received:
    2,611
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Belgium
    Ratings:
    +3,116 / 3 / -0
    well actually walt disney was a racist...not sure...or he was for the nazi's...it's something I've picked up but I'm not sure anymore what it was...but he wasn't the "good" guy everybody knows who made cartoons and animated movies. Now Tolkien being racist...likely, but that is just the problem of living in that time...LOTR racist? if you are going to compare black people with orcs that's too far...but even I sometimes think it's suspicious when you hear thing like "Men of the west" and yeah like the elves in the end going to the west that it symbolizes a better place in this case for England...America....things like that, but I'm not gonna claim LOTR is racist. People like to bash on many things...LOTR is no exception...
     
  12. kevis

    kevis Barbarian

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2008
    Messages:
    67
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Miami, Fl, USA
    Ratings:
    +0 / 0 / -0
    This a dynamite thread. I guess I should chime in.
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2008
  13. kevis

    kevis Barbarian

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2008
    Messages:
    67
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Miami, Fl, USA
    Ratings:
    +0 / 0 / -0
    I personally cannot put words in the mouth of a man whose been dead for more than 30 years, but I've read Tolkien's "Letters". In one of them he specifically rebuts a Nazi official who tried to solicit Tolkien to promote LOTR for pro-German WWII propaganda by saying that if he were to learn that he was of Jewish ancestry, instead of German (which Tolkien was) he would be happy to be a member of "that most industrious people". Tolkien, however, pro-English/Anglo-Saxon was not in favor of the Nazi's racists doctrines.


    As for whether or not LOTR is racists, I think one of the problems with the entire debate is language. The article writer chose to use the word "racist". But to truly answer the question of whether or not LOTR is racist, you have to step back and take a look at mythology as a whole. Mythology by its own definition implies a "racial" preference within its content. Traditionally, myths are created to teach the behavior and ideals that's expected of a particular people. It doesn't matter whether its Norse, Greek, Egyptian, Slavic, or Asian mythology. Every mythology is going to be race specific. In fact, if it isn't race promotiing, it probably isn't a real mythology. In fact, Tolkien knew this quite well and made no secret that he was writing an Anglo-Saxon myth. Tolkien was well aware of the true nature of what he was writing, but also wise enough to include a disclaimer in LOTR illustrated by Sam's questioning of whether not the dead Haradrim was truly evil at heart' and briefly pondering what circumstances made him go to war against the Men of the West.

    So the real question should be is Lord of the Rings "racial"? By definition of LOTR being the grand opus of Tolkien's mythology, I'd have to say yes. But remember folks, there is a differnece between something being "racial" and "racist".

    As to the aforementioned writer's suggestion that Peter Jackson should have casted peopel of color to play some of the characters in LOTR is absolutely ludicrous. It would have ruined the story. Some fantasy movies such as Dungeons and Dragons have attempted to do this, but fail to explain how one token black or asian character ends up in a medieval european setting. It never fails to destory the movie for me. On the other hand, I do get upset is when movies like Earthsea europeanizes an entire cast of characters that were specifically meant to be non-European looking. If you ask me that's racist.
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2008
  14. Overread

    Overread Wolfing it up! Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2007
    Messages:
    7,135
    Likes Received:
    357
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Location:
    UK
    Ratings:
    +641 / 3 / -1

    if you want a good example of this watch the BBC''s new Merlin series where you have a such a token character playing a major role - it just does not stack up well. Whilst I admit that its hardly attempting to be pure to the original (heck its closer to Buffy ;)) but it is strange to work out the why
     
  15. kevis

    kevis Barbarian

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2008
    Messages:
    67
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Miami, Fl, USA
    Ratings:
    +0 / 0 / -0
    I've never seen the show, but now that you mention it, I'll definitely be on the look out for it. I could always use a good laugh.
     
  16. Rob Darken

    Rob Darken New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2008
    Messages:
    865
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    In the midst of the Celtic Winter, following the v
    Ratings:
    +13 / 0 / -0
    Perhaps a few people have mistaken the symbolic conflict between "darkness" and "light" in the books for a conflict between "black" and "white", which they then interpret racially?
    Just a thought.
     
  17. Anakin

    Anakin King of TFF

    Top Poster Of Month

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2004
    Messages:
    35,087
    Likes Received:
    2,611
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Belgium
    Ratings:
    +3,116 / 3 / -0
  18. Kakashi

    Kakashi Call me Deacon Blues

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2005
    Messages:
    17,425
    Likes Received:
    413
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Location:
    Can't Find My Way Home
    Ratings:
    +725 / 6 / -2
    I think that this is foolish, considering Darkness vs. Light is present in countless other stories.

    but that's just my thought.
     
  19. rough666

    rough666 Head of the Dept. of Evil

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2008
    Messages:
    246
    Likes Received:
    19
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    British Columbia, 668 - Neighbor of the Beast
    Ratings:
    +19 / 0 / -0
    In many tales the "White Knight" represents good, and the "Black Knight" represents evil, or the "bad guy". Even in cowboy tales, the good guy usually wears the white hat. Skin color has nothing to do with it. I think the colors themselves, or lack there of, over the years have become associated to these sides. I believe anyone who associates Elves being light skinned, and Orcs of a dark skinned nature having a racial under-tone is just looking for controversy. Gimme a break!
     
  20. Rob Darken

    Rob Darken New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2008
    Messages:
    865
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    In the midst of the Celtic Winter, following the v
    Ratings:
    +13 / 0 / -0
    Agreed. It seems some people like to think they know more about an Authors views on things than the author themselves. I wish people would just enjoy the work, and not feel that they have to analyse it within an inch of its life. At the end of the day it is just a great story.