The anxiety of influence

J.R.R. Tolkien was seldom more amusing, and less convincing, than when he grumpily dismissed any attempts to draw parallels between The Lord of the Rings and Richard Wagner’s  The Ring of the Nibelung. The posthumous publication of Tolkien’s The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrun — soon to take its place alongside The Children of Hurin and just behind The Silmarillion on the “Often Purchased, Seldom Finished” shelf of the Tolkien library — has resurrected the Wagner Question, and Jeff Sypeck deals with it head-on in this interesting post.

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