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How Are Generic Techniques Used To Shape Our Response To One Character From The Novel "Lord Of The Rings": Fellowship Of The Ring By Jrr Tolkien?

1631 words - 7 pages

The novel, "The Fellowship of the Ring", by JRR Tolkien, deals with, amongst others things, themes of courage and friendship. Gandalf, in particular, portrays these characteristics very well. Gandalf is a wise and omniscient character who fights the forces of evil along with a group of friends in a classic good versus evil tale of heroism and courageousness. Through each setting in the book, Gandalf’s words are enhanced by the environment surrounding him, influencing the reader. This is shown chiefly in Hobbiton, Orthanc and the mines of Moria.Gandalf is introduced into the story of the Fellowship of the Ring, as an old and wise fellow arrives in the shire, depicted as a small utopian village home to a race called the hobbits, via the friendship of Bilbo. These dwarves see Gandalf only as interesting and bright pigment in the softly coloured tapestry of the shire. “To the shire folk he was just one of the ‘attractions’ of the party” (Pg. 32). He sparks a sense of anticipation in Hobbiton as the bright fireworks protrude from his carriage. The children become ecstatic, their minds wander and the tension in the village grows. The Shire is a green and utopian place, similar to the town in which JRR Tolkien grew up. It is in this settlement, where the hobbits live in peace, oblivious to the sinister rising outside the friendly surroundings of the Shire. Bilbo’s party begins and Gandalf reveals one of his renowned firework displays. “The fireworks by Gandalf: they were not only brought by him, but designed and made by him… The art of Gandalf improved with age” (pg. 35). During this pass of events, Gandalf wines and dines amongst the hobbits and the reader sees him as a cultured and friendly character. He is not discriminated against because of his size (twice that of any hobbit) and blends into the friendly atmosphere of a strictly hobbit only party. This completely friendly and harmless disguise is momentarily tossed aside when Gandalf’s professional interests are at heart. Whilst Gandalf is confronting Bilbo about leaving the ring for Frodo, Gandalf is forced to use a more impressive stance to sway Bilbo’s opinion of the ring. “He took a step backwards towards the hobbit, and seemed to grow tall and menacing; his shadow filled the little room” (Pg. 44). This part of the book is set within the low ceilings of Bilbo the hobbit’s home. With Gandalf’s menacing growth taking place in such a small area, the effect on Gandalf’s character is magnified. Bilbo succumbs to his great unveiled strength. Gandalf arrives from a scholarly trip around middle earth to confirm his suspicions about the ring. He returns nine years after Bilbo’s party and tells Frodo of the rings terrible past. The problem of the ring’s existence is presented and Gandalf decides to seek the head of his guild in Isengard, the home of the tower of Saruman the White.Gandalf arrives at Isengard late in...

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