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May 30, 2022

King Arthur and the Tolkien Lecture

King Arthur and the Tolkien Lecture

Guest Gabriel Schenk -- Best place for enchanted swords

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Joining Julia Golding in this episode is Dr. Gabriel Schenk, an expert on Tolkien, fantasy writing, and Arthurian legends. Gabriel co-founded the annual Tolkien Lecture at Pembroke College Oxford (one of the colleges associated with the writer). You can see this year's lecture with acclaimed fantasy author Rebecca F Kuang as well as previous ones at They go on to take a deep dive into the long story of Arthurian literature. Did he exist? Why was he so popular in the later medieval period? Where is the Shakespearian play on this theme as it seems a big gap in the bard's output? Who are the main writers who picked up the baton in the 19th and 20th centuries? In fact, this podcast provides you with a succinct summary of what you need to know to navigate Arthurian stories, ending up at the top tips for which series you might like to watch on TV. Gabriel and Julia end by choosing their favourite enchanted swords from the fantasy armoury. Do you agree with their picks and what would yours be?

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