FIND in
<--prev V31 next-->

From: "Andy Robertson" <andywrobertson@clara.co.uk>
Subject: Re: (urth) Re: The Best Introduction To The Mountains
Date: Wed, 2 Jan 2002 14:53:54 -0000

----- Original Message -----
From: "Adam Stephanides" <adamsteph@earthlink.net>

> Thanks for putting this essay on your website, Andy; it's a great service.
> I agree that it's an important essay for Wolfe scholars, even if you don't
> care about Tolkien, as I don't.  (Has Wolfe ever mentioned Tolkien in
> before?)

Not as far as I know.

> Some aspects of his work definitely need to be reconsidered in
> light of it, such as the presentation of the Autarch's rule in BOTNS as
> best possible under the circumstances, and of rebellion against it as
> "Satanic"; and the portrayal of Silk and Silkhorn as "natural leaders."
> I may have been too quick, earlier, to dismiss the poster who argued that
> BOTSS presented examples of "good rule."  But then, those elements of the
> books never appealed to me.

Me neither, frankly.  I always thought Wolfe undermined Severian's moral
authority at every turn.

> I haven't looked at MEDITATIONS ON MIDDLE-EARTH, but possibly Wolfe's
> was rejected because the image of Tolkien as propagandist for a society in
> which the lower orders cheerfully obey and serve their betters was not one
> the editor wanted to project.

But no, no, no, Wolfe is not propagandising for feudalism.

There is one very real sense in which the Dark Ages were the brightest of
times, and it is this: that they were times of defined and definite duties
and freedoms.

I understand that could be a mistake one would make reading this essay, but
he is talking about something much more like libertarianism:  freedom,
liberty and *property*. .   This has absolutely nohing to do with supporting
tyranny, (and if conservatism is about supporting tyranny, Wolfe is not a

We might have a society in which the laws were few and just, simple,
permanent, and familiar to everyone -- a society in which everyone stood
shoulder-to-shoulder because everyone lived by the same changeless rules,
and everyone knew what those rules were. When we had it, we would also have
a society in which the lack of wealth was not reason for resentment but a
spur to ambition, and in which wealth was not a cause for self-indulgence
but a call to service.

> Between this and Wolfe's comments on 9-11 I'm learning more about Wolfe's
> politics than I think I want to know, and I fear for THE WIZARD KNIGHT.

Wolfe is a Conservative Catholic Christian right-winger.   Deal With It!!!!

All his writing from THE FIFTH HEAD OF CERBERUS onward (apart from the odd
potboiler) has embodied this view of right and wrong.

> And Terry Brooks again!  First Pullman praises him, then Wolfe criticizes
> his detractors.  I've never read him, but can it be that his bad
> is not entirely deserved?

This I cannot believe, even from the hand of the Wolfe.

    --- *** ---

But where are Wolfe's comments on 9/11, pray?   I want to read them.

Yours in Conservative hufpuffery

    Andy Robertson

<--prev V31 next-->