Baptism of Fire: The Birth of the Modern British Fantastic in World War I

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About the author:
Janet Brennan Croft is Head of Access and Delivery Services and Assistant Professor at Rutgers University Libraries. She is the author of War in the Works of J. R. R. Tolkien (2005 winner, Mythopoeic Society Award for Inklings Studies). She is the editor of the refereed scholarly journal Mythlore and has edited or co-edited four other collections of literary essays: Tolkien on Film: Essays on Peter Jackson's The Lord of the Rings; Tolkien and Shakespeare: Es-says on Shared Themes and Language; Tolkien in the New Century: Essays in Honor of Tom Shippey; and Perilous and Fair: Women in J. R. R. Tolkien's Work and Life. She has also written on Lois McMaster Bujold, Terry Pratchett, J. K. Rowling, and other authors.

Baptism of Fire: The Birth of the Modern British Fantastic in World War I

Authored by Janet Brennan Croft
Edition: 1

World War I has been called "the poets' war," as it was characterized by a massive outpouring of works of literature during and after the war. Much of this literary harvest, as Paul Fussell brilliantly demonstrated in The Great War and Modern Memory, hinged on an ironic response to the deadly absurdities of World War I.

Yet, Fussell also acknowledges that fantasy could be a legitimate literary response to the war, a way of transforming the horrible experiences of the war into something more bearable, applicable, and relevant; into myth and "Escape" in the sense that Tolkien used the term in "On Fairy-stories."

This present volume sprang from a desire to examine selected examples of the fantastic response to World War I among British authors. The contents comprise a mix of five classic articles from the pages of Mythlore and twelve new essays. The first half of the book considers the Inklings, the Oxford literary group centered on J. R. R. Tolkien and C. S. Lewis, while the second half deals with other authors.

Publication Date:
1887726039 / 9781887726030
Page Count:
Binding Type:
US Trade Paper
Trim Size:
6" x 9"
Black and White
Related Categories:
Literary Criticism / Science Fiction & Fantasy

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