• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How does Book Four of Lord of the Rings illustrate the view that a convincing character should not be wholly good or evil, but a mixture of both?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

David Hayhurst 5th October 2004 How does Book Four of Lord of the Rings illustrate the view that a convincing character should not be wholly good or evil, but a mixture of both? In this essay I intend to look at Book Four of Lord of the Rings and look for evidence in it that suggests a convincing character should not be wholly good or evil but a mixture of both. I shall start by looking at the character of Sm�agol, as his character shows most clearly how a convincing character should not be wholly good or evil. In Book Four of Lord of the Rings, Tolkien portrays Sm�agol not as an entirely convincing character , yet not as a wholly good or evil one. Instead, Sm�agol is depicted as being unsure himself. A well known part of the play on the topic of the good and evil of this character shows how Sm�agol seems to change characters while he is alone, and have a debate within himself as to what is right and wrong. " 'Sm�agol promised,' said the first thought. Yes, yes, my precious,' came the answer, 'we promised: to save our Precious, not to let Him have it- never. ...read more.

Middle

Tolkien describes physical change in the character as he changes states of mind, as we can see from this. "Sm�agol was holding a debate with some other thought that used the same voice, but made it squeak and hiss. A pale light and a green light alternated in his eyes as he spoke" This quote is a good example of how Tolkien describes Sm�agol's physical changes that occur while he changes character. The only time that these physical changes influence the play, is when Sam is awakened by Sm�agol talking to himself, and he notices these physical changes occurring. These, with what Sm�agol is saying combine to grow great suspicion over Sm�agol's character in Sam's mind. There is evidence in the story that Gollum is evil, yet this contradicts evidence that he is good, although it is possible that his good is purely motivated by self gain. This quote shows evidence of Gollum's evil. " 'Got him!' hissed Gollum in his ear. 'At last, my precious, we've got him, yes, the nasty hobbit. We takes this one. She'll get the other. O yes, Shelob will get him, not Sm�agol: he promised; he won't hurt master at all. ...read more.

Conclusion

He states that although Gollum deserves death, he isn't dead, and that some who do die, deserve to live. So what may appear as Frodo being harsh; considering killing Sm�agol, he is simply being practical and realistic, not retaliating to anger or hatred with violence. Despite all this, Frodo's efforts to be good do appear unrealistic, as his calmness through considering something as terminal as death seams almost insane and not at all human like. His lack of emotion is like that of an autistic human; and I have no reason to believe that Frodo is playing the role of an autistic character. I have looked at how the character of Frodo plays a fairly good role, who can stay calm through what seems to be any situation, and how the character of Sm�agol alternates between good and evil, yet never being consistent with one or the other. From looking at my evidence, I think that a convincing character cannot be wholly good or wholly evil, if they are based on humans. In this story, Hobbits share many characteristics of a human in their communication and thought, and the over-composed character of Frodo, and the unsettled state of the character of Sm�agol I find it unconvincing. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE JRR Tolkien section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE JRR Tolkien essays

  1. What factors define a person's identity in The Hobbit? Do individuals have any power ...

    Sometimes, even though Gandalf is right there, he does not have a way to solve their problems, and also needs help from others. Like Bilbo, Tolkien portrays Gandalf as also a very 'human' wizard. Although Thorin Oakenshield is introduced at the very beginning of the novel till the very end, his character would still not be called 'fully-developed'.

  2. Lord of the Rings book report. Plot outline and themes.

    travelling, called lembas and they get grey elven-cloaks that make the carrier almost invisible. They leave lothlorien and head for Emyn Muil over the great river. They suspect that they are being followed by a creature named Gollum, the creature that "gave" Bilbo the ring.

  1. The Hobbit

    to an ounce" and Bilbo made the deadly mistake of taking a golden drinking cup on his night's visit to the dragons den (P.229). The dragon was furious and hunted the mountain and the lands surrounding but the hobbit hid his friends well in the secret passageway that they discovered.

  2. Lord of the rings: The fellowship of the ring

    as soon as these two meet it starts of with a joke this shows that they have both got a sense of humour and they can react with each other this revolves with a big lash out of a hug these two get on like a house on fire, so

  1. The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Rings - An analysis of ...

    The mood of the film changes completely when the subject of Bilbo is introduced, this is evident from the music in the background and the lighting. The music changes suddenly from the soothing Shire theme to a more dramatic tune.

  2. Media - The Lord of the Rings.

    The voice over on the trailer is the voice of Gandulf the wizard who is one of the characters in the legend. I think that by the directors choosing the characters to do the voice-overs in the story it assists the audience to come to terms with the actors and what responsibilities they play for future films.

  1. Comment on in detail how genre and narrative are established in the opening scenes ...

    'The Lord of the Rings' uses a voiceover, accompanied by images to convey the story of the viewer; conversely 'Gladiator' uses subtitles to fill the viewer in on the history before the battle. Both openings to the films are in chronological order.

  2. In this coursework, I will be comparing two different film trailers, "Lord of the ...

    This is a clear sign of triumph and valiance. In about the middle of the trailer there is an interesting caption showing two hobbits played by, Elijah Wood and Sean Astin arguing wither to kill a creature, which looks like a monkey but seems to have cunning and calculating brain of human.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work