Tolkienism as a subculture. 

According to the statistics of a public-opinion poll, the majority of people in Russia refers themselves to some sort of subcultures. As you can easily understand from the root of the term «Subculture», it is closely connected with the word «Culture». Modern scientific definition of this term symbolyses the beliefs, values, expressive means of language which should be common for a particular group of people. In all types of the society we can find different subgroups which are different from the others in their cultural values and traditions.  

The Lord of the Rings is an epic high fantasy novel written by J. R. R. Tolkien. . It was written between 1937 and 1949. It is the second best-selling novel ever written, with over 150 million copies sold. The Lord of the Rings was published in three volumes over the course of a year from 29 July 1954 to 20 October 1955. The three volumes were entitled The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, and The Return of the King. The Lord of the Rings has since been reprinted numerous times and translated into many languages.

The  majority of subcultures was formed on fantasy books or films, for example,  Harry Potter's trilogy or The Lord of Rings which I took as an example which I would like to describe as a subculture.   

 The main reason for such numerous quantity of subcultures is the desire of young generation to escape from the difficulties of real life. Supporting the idea of any subculture they associate it with  the alternative life or virtual world where they can be kings or acquire special  magical  skills to persuade anybody to do what they want.  

One of these groups was formed in 1950s by the followers of the well-known English writer  John Ronald Reuel Tolkien.  First club of Tolkienists called «Fellowship of the Ring» and it was organised by Ted Johnson at Pitkone,  USA.  In 1965 American Society of Tolkienists conducted a meeting at the camp of University of the District of Columbia by Richard Plots. In 1967 their community  numbered  one thousand members. In 1969 first conference took place in Wahington and was characterized as a great social event.

As any subculture the Tolkienism followers have their own style of clothes. We can't imagine the tolkienist without a sword or helmets, because the most important thing in his life is a fight for safety of his life. Tolkienists, like any professional community, have their own occupations.

The directions of Tolkienists' activities are really varied.   Firstly, it is scientific observations which are dedicated to The Lord Of Rings's characters and their life manners.  Even after the author's death the scientists search the references of Tolkienist's world in the modern society. Secondly, the tolkienists are famous by their creative writings. Such kind of events is peculiar for all fan groups but in view of this motion's age some of their compositions became classics. Besides this, Tolkien's son Christopher, 88-years old, periodically reconstructs his father's novels.    The third branch of tolkienists is the role-playing games. The significance of these games is the reconstruction of the time images which are described in the books. The gamers use the weapons (swords, axes, pikes and javelins) and of course characters: elves, dwarfs and even ents (trees which is able to walk as any kind of animal) and create theatrical performances at the open air. They have special places for such kind of games. For instance in Moscow they have two places: country estate Tsaritsyno and Neskuchny Garden.

In conclusion, I would like to say that Tolkienism is one of the most original subcultures in the modern society and unquestionably it deserves special attention to itself from the real society as a cultural phenomenan.


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