Lecture to delve into origins of Tolkien’s work

By Madison Ferril

JRR Tolkien’s book, “The Hobbit,” will be the subject of a lecture by Dr. Michael Livingston on Friday.

The lecture, titled “Tolkien’s Creation by Edition: The Medieval Origins of The Hobbit,” will look at the effects of Tolkien’s academic work on his fantasy writing.
The lecture will take place at 3:30 p.m. in 200 Jones Library.

It is open to all students and staff as well as the general public.

Dr. Tom Hanks, professor of English, said Baylor asked Livingston to give a week of workshops over paleography and codicology of medieval texts to graduate students and faculty members. Paleography is the process of reading, translating and dating historical texts. Codicology is the study of books and how they are made.

“He offered to give this lecture really as a bonus for inviting him here,” Hanks said.

Hanks said the workshops and lecture are supported by generous donations from the departments of religion, modern foreign languages, English and history with help from the Graduate School.

Tolkien, author of “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy, taught at Oxford University from 1925 to 1959, serving as professor of Anglo-Saxon and of English medieval literature and languages.
Livingston is an assistant professor of English and associate director of the Honors Program at The Citadel in Charleston, S.C. He graduated from Baylor in 1998 with a degree in history and went on to graduate school at Western Michigan University, where he earned a master’s in medieval studies.

He received another master’s and his doctorate from the University of Rochester.