University of Wisconsin Tolkien Society

Welcome to the web page of the University of Wisconsin Tolkien and Fantasy Society!

Last modified: June 2, 2014

Who we are | Meeting schedule | How to join | For more information | Constitution | Links and items of interest


Who we are

The Tolkien Society at the University of Wisconsin-Madison was founded in September 1966. It has been meeting once a month ever since (during the first several years, twice a month), with a very few misses here and there (e.g., there were a couple of years when the group did not meet during the summer, but usually it did). In January, 2001, we changed our name to the Tolkien and Fantasy Society to reflect our broad interests better.

We discuss:

·         The work of Tolkien (fiction, poetry, scholarly work, drawings and illustrations)

·         Critical essays about Tolkien

·         Adaptations of Tolkien's work (movies, plays, radio drama, comics)

·         The work of the Inklings and his other friends (such as C. S. Lewis, W. H. Lewis, Charles Williams, Owen Barfield)

·         Other fantasy and science fiction (e. g., E. R. Eddison, Kenneth Morris, William Morris, T. H. White, Peter S. Beagle, Ursula K. Le Guin, Robin McKinley, Patricia Wrightson, et al.)

·         The literature of the Middle Ages (especially the works that Tolkien himself studied, such as the Old English Beowulf and the Middle English Sir Gawain and the Green Knight)

·         World mythology (Tolkien was particularly interested in Germanic and Celtic myth)

·         Language (invented languages like Quenya and Sindarin as well as primary world languages)

Our journal, ORCRIST, appeared irregularly, and has not been published since 1977, though we still may revive it sometime. Eight issues were published, now mostly out of print, though copies of numbers 3, 4, and 5 (which were co-published as TOLKIEN JOURNAL numbers 11, 13, and 14 respectively) may still be available from the Mythopoeic Society, for those who are interested. There is a set in the Memorial Library on the UW-Madison campus, as well as in a number of other libraries across the U. S.


Meeting schedule

Summer Semester, 2014

Meetings will be held on Sundays beginning at 7:30 p.m. and concluding between 9:30-10:00 p.m. (CST). The location will be in Union South on the 200 block of N. Randall Avenue. Check "Today in the Union" for the exact room, either on one of the monitors in the building or on the website at http://www.union.wisc.edu

JUNE 8–TRIBUTE TO FREDERIK POHL

Science fiction Grand Master, author, editor, literary agent, and member of First Fandom Frederik Pohl (1919-2013) died late last year. Discussion will focus on his classic SF novel The Space Merchants (co-authored with C. M. Lornbluth) and his memoir The Way the Future Was. Some who knew him will also share memories of Fred.

 

JULY 20– URSULA VERNON

Discussion of the work of the author guest of honor at this year's annual conference (the 45th) of the Mythopoeic Society, to be held August 8-11 at Wheaton College in Norton, Massachusetts (see the conference website at http://www.mythsoc.org). Her graphic novel Digger won both a Hugo and an Aslan award. Her illustrated Danny Dragonbreath series is also delightful.

 

AUGUST 17– RECENT F&SF FILMS

Our annual discussion of the movies in the fantasy and science fiction genre that have been released this year. Possible titles include Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Divergent, Spider-Man 2, X-Men: Days of Future Past, et al.

 

 

Spring Semester, 2014

Meetings will be held on Sundays beginning at 7:30 p.m. and concluding between 9:30-10:00 p.m. (CST), except that the May 18th meeting will begin at 8:00 p.m. The location (except for the January meeting) will be in Union South on the 200 block of N. Randall Avenue. Check "Today in the Union" for the exact room, either on one of the monitors in the building or on the website at http://www.union.wisc.edu

JANUARY 12–RECENT FILMS

Discuss recent fantasy and science fiction moves, e.g., Ender’s Game, Frozen, Gravity, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Thor: The Dark World et al (but we'll save the Hobbit movie for our February meeting). NOTE: this meeting will be held from 6:00-8:00 p.m. in the Board Room on the 3rd floor of Memorial Union on Langdon Street.

 

FEBRUARY 9– DESOLATION OF SMAUG

Discussion of the second film in Peter Jackson's Hobbit trilogy.

 

MARCH 9– G. K. CHESTERTON

Discussion of the work of an author who was regarded as a mentor by Tolkien, C.. S. Lewis and others. Suggested: read one of his detective stories such as something from The Innocence of Father Brown or The Club of Queer Trades, one of his fantasies such as The Man Who Was Thursday, perhaps some of his poetry such as "Lepanto". He was a prolific writer. Many of his works are out of copyright and available online, for example at http://www.online-literature.com/chesterton or http://www.pagebypagebooks.com/Gilbert_K_Chesterton.

 

APRIL 13– RICHARD LEE BYERS AND TROY DENNING

Discussion of the work of the guests of honor at Odyssey Con, which this year will be held at Crowne Plaza on East Washington Street in Madison from April 4-6. Both have written novels for gaming company Wizards of the Coast. Byers is perhaps best-known for the Haunted Lands tetralogy: Unclean, Undead, Unholy, and Realms of the Dead (the last in collaboration with R. A. Salvatore). He is also known for the Brotherhood of the Griffon trilogy: The Captive Flame, Whisper of Venom, and The Spectral Blaze. Denning has writtten many Star Wars novels, including Tatooine Ghost and the Legacy of the Force trilogy: Tempest, Inferno,and Invincible. The conference website is at http://www.odysseycon.org.

 

MAY 18– HIROMI GOTO AND N. K. JEMISON

This meeting will begin at 8:00 p.m and run until around 10:00 p.m. Discussion of the work of the guests of honor at WisCon, the annual Wisconsin Science Fiction Conference, which will be held at the Concourse Hotel from May 23-26. This year WisCon will be held in conjunction with the annual conference of the Science Fiction Research Association (SFRA), with meetings at the Inn on the Park. The author guests of honor at SFRA will be Eleanor Arnason and Nisi Shawl. The conference website is at http://www.wiscon.info. Read something by one of these authors and we'll share our impressions.

 

 

 

Fall Semester, 2013

Meetings will be held on Sundays beginning at 7:30 p.m. and concluding between 9:30-10:00 p.m. (CST). The location will be in Union South on the 200 block of N. Randall Avenue. Check "Today in the Union" for the exact room, either on one of the monitors in the building or on the website at http://www.union.wisc.edu

OCTOBER 13–JACK VANCE

In memoriam Jack Vance (1916-2013). Discuss his fantasy works, particularly The Dying Earth, The Dragon Masters, The Last Castle.

 

NOVEMBER 10– OUT OF THE SILENT PLANET

In honor of the 50th anniversary of the death of C. Lewis (1898-1963) and the 75th anniversary of the publication of this novel, we will discuss Out of the Silent Planet (1938).

 

DECEMBER 1– THE FALL OF ARTHUR

Discussion of J. R. R. Tolkien’s latest posthumous work, The Fall of Arthur (2013), an unfinished narrative poem. The December meeting is also a party at which we have cake to fortify ourselves for final exams.

 

Summer Semester, 2013

Meetings will be held on Sundays beginning at 7:30 p.m. (except on July 21 when we will begin at 7:00 p.m.) and concluding between 9:30-10:00 p.m. (CST). The location will be in Union South on the 200 block of N. Randall Avenue. Check "Today in the Union" for the exact room, either on one of the monitors in the building or on the website at http://www.union.wisc.edu

JUNE 9–DOCTOR WHO

For the 50th anniversary of this long-running series that began in 1963, we'll have a general diiscussion of the television show, movies, novelizations, original novels, audio and comic book versions. Everyone has met the Doctor in some version, so we'll pool our knowledge.

 

JULY 21– THE HIGH AND THE PERILOUS IN THE LORD OF THE RINGS

Note: meeting will begin at 7:00. A chapter from Kristin Thompson's work in progress on Tolkien's narrative. This is a long chapter that we expect to take about two hours, which is why we are starting the meeting earlier than usual. Kristin would like feedback.

 

AUGUST 18– SUMMER MOVIES

Our annual discussion of the recent crop of science fiction and fantasy-related films. This time these will include Oz the Great and Powerful, Iron Man 3, Star Trek: Into Darkness, Man of Steel, Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters, and whatever else has been released.

 

SEPTEMBER 15– DIMINISHMENT VS. PRESERVATION IN THE LORD OF THE RINGS

Discussion of another chapter from Kristin's forthcoming book. This one can be read in an hour or so. Kristin will appreciate our feedback.

 

How to join

Simply show up to meetings! There are no dues, no requirements, no hazings, no pledges. If you are active in the fantasy and/or science fiction community, feel free to bring items of interest to meetings; we always have a "News and Notes" time in each meeting.

 

 

 


For more information

For more information on the UW Tolkien Society, feel free to send us email at tolksoc@stdorg.wisc.edu.


Links and items of interest

Here is a listing of the contents of all published issues of Orcrist, the UWTS's journal.

And here is a listing of past meeting topics.

UWTS member Dorothea Salo runs a mailing list on the topic of Tolkien's invented languages. To learn more, read the Elfling list's web page.

People interested in Tolkien's languages might also check the website of the Elvish Linguistic Fellowship.

Other websites of groups that may be of interest:

Dorothy L. Sayers Society: http://www.sayers.org.uk/

Madison C. S. Lewis Society: http://www.cslewismadison.org

Marquette University Tolkien Papers: http://www.marquette.edu/library/archives/tolkien.shtml

Mythopoeic Society: http://www.mythsoc.org

Netherlands C. S. Lewis website (in English and Dutch): http://www.lewisiana.nl/

Rivendell Group of the Mythopoeic Society (Twin Cities smial): http://www.tc.umn.edu/~d-lena/RIVENDELL.html

Tolkien Society (based in England): http://www.tolkiensociety.org

Wade Center: http://www.wheaton.edu/wadecenter/


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How to join

Simply show up to meetings! There are no dues, no requirements, no hazings, no pledges. If you are active in the fantasy and/or science fiction community, feel free to bring items of interest to meetings; we always have a "News and Notes" time in each meeting.

 

 

 


For more information

For more information on the UW Tolkien Society, feel free to send us email at tolksoc@stdorg.wisc.edu.


Links and items of interest

Here is a listing of the contents of all published issues of Orcrist, the UWTS's journal.

And here is a listing of past meeting topics.

UWTS member Dorothea Salo runs a mailing list on the topic of Tolkien's invented languages. To learn more, read the Elfling list's web page.

People interested in Tolkien's languages might also check the website of the Elvish Linguistic Fellowship.


Return to top of page.