Tolkien Professor Takes on Sir Thomas Malory

In his latest free seminar from the Mythgard Academy, Dr. Corey Olsen will offer in-depth analysis of Sir Thomas Malory’s Le Morte d’Arthur using the Eugène Vinaver (2nd ed.) text based on the Winchester Manuscript discovered in 1934. 

Register now to join our live sessions, or follow the recordings on the Signum University YouTube Channel.

View Details & Schedule Register

To support these free classes from the Mythgard Institute and have an opportunity to vote on upcoming seminars, visit the Signum University Annual Fund page.

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Reactions to the Desolation of Smaug

The Tolkien Professor reacts to “The Desolation of Smaug”, the second movie in Peter Jackson’s increasingly epic adaptation of “The Hobbit”. Parts one and two can be found here, or on iTunes.

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Office Hours 5

After a long absence,  Office Hours with The Tolkien Professor is back! Professor Olsen discusses such diverse topics as the relationship between the Rohirrim and the Anglo-Saxons and the practicality of getting a graduate degree in Tolkien Studies.  You can download Office Hours #6 here, or listen on iTunes.

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Tolkien Chat 14: Bernd Greisinger of the Greisinger Musuem

Bernd Greisinger has opened up his private collection of Tolkien-related literature, art, and collectibles to the public in an immersive, multi-media experience at the Greisinger Museum of Jenins, Switzerland. Mr. Greisinger talks to Professor Olsen about his collection, and his vision for the museum. You can find the files here, or subscribe to The Tolkien Professor on iTunes.

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Tolkien Chat 13:Mythcon 44

Tolkien Chat 13: Mythgard at Mythcon 44

July 12 through 15 saw a swarm of fantasy scholars and fans descend on the Kellogg Conference Center of Michigan State University to participate in the Mythopoeic Society’s Mythcon 44. This year’s theme, “The Green and Growing Land,” spark the imagination of a number of Mythgard Institute students. As a result, seven presentations across the weekend were made by Mythgardians:

  • Laura Lee Smith – “First Contact: Man in the Landscape of Tormance and Perelandra”
  • Ryan Joy – “Mary Shelley’s Creature and Picard’s Humanity”
  • Kris Swank – “Good Plain Food: Diet and Virtue in the Fantasies of Tolkien and Lewis”
  • Trish Lambert – “How the Respective Cosmogonies of Narnia and Middle-earth Affect Grief and Hope in the Environment”
  • Dan Kinney – “The Musical Heart of the Lands of Narnia and Middle-earth”
  • Andrew Higgins – “A Linguistic Exploration through Tolkien’s Earliest Landscapes”

In addition, Professor Verlyn Flieger made a presentation entitled “How Forests Behave-Or Do They” and visiting lecturer Douglas Anderson, who was Scholar Guest of Honor at the event, gave a presentation about fairies in fantasy works of the 19th and early 20th centuries.

Mythgard students were limited to the podium. Deborah Sabo and Laura Berkholtz were in the audience, contributing their own thoughts and observations during question and answer sessions.

And there is more! Professor Flieger also won the Inklings Studies prize and accepted it to a standing ovation. Our own Professor Olsen was also a nominee in this category, and though it was a disappointment not to hear his name announced, it was a eucatastrophic consolation to hear Dr. Flieger’s name boom through the speakers. Here’s hoping Dr. Olsen is nominated again next year!

There were so many interesting papers presented that there is no way to write about them all. Instead, a group of Mythgard students got together in the bar of the Kellogg Center and shared thoughts about the presentations they had attended. Captured in a short recording in this Tolkien Chat, it offers some bits and bobs about this year’s Mythcon.

The 2014 Mythcon conference will take place next August at Wheaton College, Norton Massachusetts. Here’s hoping we see even more Mythgardians in attendance…including Dr. Olsen!

Download .mp3 (right click and choose “Save As…” to download)

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Free on iTunes U: The Lord of the Rings I

Screen Shot 2013-03-28 at 10.05.26 PMMany of you may remember Mythgard Academy’s Summer 2012 short course on The Fellowship of the RingThe Lord of the Rings I: The Road Goes Ever On.  Well, if you missed out on taking it, we’ve got good news!

Starting today, The Lord of the Rings I is available as a free, enhanced course pack through iTunes U.  You can now download this course to your iPad, iPod touch or iPhone and follow along with each lecture while also reading the passages in Tolkien’s first book of the trilogy and taking notes in the virtual margins.  Even if you don’t have an iOS device, you can download all six lectures in both audio and video format to your PC or Mac through iTunes.

Visit Signum University’s iTunes U site to check out The Road Goes Ever On, our other two courses on The Silmarillion and The Hobbit and catch up with great content from Mythgard, Signum and The Tolkien Professor!

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Check out Tolkien Professor, Signum, and Mythgard on iTunes U!

The Tolkien Professor, in conjunction with Signum University, and Mythgard Institute, is excited to announce that courses are now featured on iTunes U! The iTunes U site provides access to all three partners-in-learning — the best of Tolkien Professor, full lectures from Signum and Mythgard, and much more!

Check it out today on iTunes U!

We are also pleased to announce The Hobbit and The Silmarillion courses are available as iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch friendly downloads!

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Fellowship Short Course Now Available

Greetings!  A quick note here to let you know that The Tolkien Professor’s short course on The Fellowship of The Ring, “The Lord of The Rings I” has wrapped up at Mythgard Academy – and the recordings are available for purchase now as a Course Pack!  If you missed the class, you can now get all six lectures for just $45 at shop.signumuniversity.org.  And through July 31st, the Mythgard birthday discount will still take 5% off – just type in code “BIRTHDAY” during check out!

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New Course on The Hobbit!

This Fall, The Tolkien Professor will be offering The Story of The Hobbit at Mythgard Institute!

This course will examine the life of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit.  We will examine several important precursors of the book, works that helped establish the genre in which Tolkien was writing, or which influenced Tolkien’s own thinking.  We will then read not the final published version of The Hobbit, but the growth of the story in manuscript and typescript, examining carefully how the story developed and in what directions.  We will then turn to the publication and reception ofThe Hobbit, including its adaptation to film.  We’ll end the semester with a discussion of the Rankin-Bass animated Hobbit and, after a brief delay, a discussion of Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.

Professor Olsen will be joined in this class by two distinguished guest lecturers: John D. Rateliff, author of The History ofThe Hobbit, and Douglas A. Anderson, author of The Annotated Hobbit, two of the foremost scholars on The Hobbit in the world.

Learn more about The Story of The Hobbit at Mythgard Institute – and enroll today!

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Dr. Olsen Discusses Mythgard Academy LotR Course

Missed the open house session on Mythgard Academy’s first Tolkien course “Lord of the Rings I: The Road Goes Ever On”?  Never fear!  Dr. Olsen recorded the entire session so you can learn more about this great opportunities for high school students and adults alike:

Learn even more about Mythgard Academy and sign up here.

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