Books and Movies Reviews

The Lord of the Rings

Good and Evil Created by the One Ring
“How shall a man judge what to do in such times?… As he has ever judged… good and ill have not changed since yesteryear” (Tolkien, Towers 49). Almost all novels deal with the concept of good and evil. In the Lord of the Rings J.R.R. Tolkien explores the theory of good and evil through the characters of Gandalf, Sauron, Gollum, and Frodo. This concept of good and evil has absolute goods and evils (Gandalf and Sauron) and people who are both good and evil (Gollum and Frodo).
Gandalf is one of the five Istari or Wizards who appeared in Middle-earth “to contest the power of Sauron… and to move Elves and Men an all living things of good will to valiant deeds” (Tolkien, Silmaril 299). Gandalf alone becomes responsible for Sauron’s fall because of his vigilance and persistence, he “is the mover of all that has been accomplished” (Tolkien, Return 300). Gandalf is the chief enemy of Sauron and “is a representative of a good that suggests knowledge of the whole of experience and that actively opposes the evil it sees, from the most elemental to the merely human” (Crabbe 83). Just as Sauron represents the ultimate evil, Gandalf represents the ultimate good. In the Lord of the Rings a traditional symbol for good is
white and after Gandalf’s fall and resurrection “his hair was as white as snow in the sunshine; and gleaming white was his robe; the eyes under his deep brows were bright, piercing as the rays of the sun; power was in his hand” (Tolkien, Towers 125). Gandalf being re-clothed in white is a symbol of his goodness and power and he is seen “shining now as if with some light kindled within… holding a power beyond the strength of kings” (Tolkien, Towers 133). Gandalf becomes the symbol for the free people and is named the White Rider by Aragorn. Gandalf shows his goodness because he is ever at work helping the free peoples and because he rejects the temptation of the ring, the ultimate s…


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