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The Silmarillion Seminar

by Signum University

This course material is only available in the iTunes U app on iPhone or iPad.

Course Description

Thousands of Tolkien fans have had the same frustrating experience. You have read The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, and you have loved them. Then, you learned of the existence of The Silmarillion, another great work by one of your favorite authors, and you picked it up, hoping for more of what you loved in Tolkien’s more well-known works.

You quickly found, however, that The Silmarillion is something quite different, and rather challenging. The tone is very different and more archaic, and there are simply pages and pages full of long and difficult-to-pronounce names, which are a bit overwhelming. You put the book down and you didn’t pick it up again in a hurry.

It’s okay: you are not alone.

“This same thing happened to me, and I didn’t even try to read The Silmarillion again for about five years. I can very well sympathize with people who have tried and failed to enjoy this book.” – The Tolkien Professor

Despite its challenging learning curve, The Silmarillion is an amazing set of stories. Some of these stories may be even more profound and more moving than The Lord of the Rings. What’s more, once you know The Silmarillion, you will begin to understand The Lord of the Rings in a whole new way.

In the Silmarillion Seminar, listeners will be reading through the book slowly and carefully, at the pace of about a chapter a week, and gathering together to have an online audio discussion with the Tolkien Professor about each chapter. Each session will be recorded and posted here in this course. Pick up your discarded copy and give this truly incredible book another chance!

Customer Reviews


Loved listening to this seminar. Informative and aside from the instructor's "tic" where he will say, "" in response to nearly every comment, I would highly recommend this to anyone interested in a deep discussion of Tolkien's masterpiece.

The best way to read the Silmarillion

Is to read along with this podcast. These are deep, mythical tales and a discussion of each as you go along provides a much richer experience. The professor is very conscientious toward first time readers, and does not frequently jump ahead to later chapters in discussion.

I highly recommend this seminar to everyone - first time readers and old hands, alike.

The Silmarillion Seminar
View in iTunes

Customer Ratings