A memorable interview with Dr. Tom Shippey took place this last Saturday, January 7th. Dr. Shippey, or just Tom as he prefers, visits with us about a range of topics that cover his early life and career, his meeting with, and personal impression of Tolkien, including his own views on the recent release of the 1961 Nobel Prize jury’s comments regarding Tolkien.
The interview is available here on our Middle-earth Network Specials. Feel free to look into our archives where you’ll also find our interview with Douglas Gresham, stepson of the late C.S. Lewis, and several more world class interviews.
In addition listeners are in for a rare treat where Dr. Shippey recites the opening lines of Beowulf in Anglo Saxon, plus takes us on a mini tour of his home library. This is a rare and insightful interview where we get to know a delightful, thought provoking, and at times humorous individual.
Dr. Shippey is considered to be the world’s leading expert on Tolkien, and the author of several books, which include “J.R.R. Tolkien: Author of the Century”. His career and personal life unintentionally mirrored Tolkien in many ways. He played rugby for the same team, he attended Tolkien’s former school, King Edward’s School in Birmingham, taught Old English at Oxford, and occupied Tolkien’s former chair at the University of Leeds.
Shippey is also well known for several other books and essays both scholarly and fictional. Under the pseudonym of “Tom Allen” he has written two stories that were published in anthologies edited by Peter Weston, “King Dragon” and “Not Absolute”. He also co-wrote with Harry Harrison “The Hammer and the Cross” trilogy.