This challenging paper on mythology in Tolkien’s depiction of Dwarves brings some much-needed definition to the ongoing discussion of Tolkien and race. Quotes China Miéville’s observation that “racism is true” in Tolkien’s works, “in that people really are defined by their race,” but demonstrates how Tolkien’s conception of the racial characteristics of Dwarves changed over his lifetime. Yet we come back in the end to the inescapable fact, with all its implications, that the Dwarves continue to have a set of recognizable racial characteristics.

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