Senior Honors Projects, 2010-2019

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Date of Graduation

Spring 2018

Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (BA)


Department of English


Mark Rankin

Dabney Bankert

Sofia Samatar


J. R. R. Tolkien embodies the opposing ideals of Enchantment and the Machine in the Silmarils and the One Ring respectively. These created objects oppose each other just as Tolkien’s ideals of art do. Enchantment is art’s ideal, it's purpose is to glorify and enrich the beauty of reality through subcreation. The Silmarils exhibit the delight of making and perceiving beauty. Whereas the Machine is art’s shadowy reflection that utilizes apparatuses or devices rather than personal talent in order to coerce others and reality itself. Overall Tolkien's aesthetic theories reflect many fears surrounding modern attitudes toward weaponizing art. Tolkien supplies Enchantment as the solution to these problems surrounding art and creativity in an oppressively technological world.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.