The essay reveals the nature of time and space in Tolkien’s epic The Lord of the Rings with the help of the chronotope concept proposed by Mikhail Bakhtin. Bakhtin’s classification of spatiotemporal relations in the novel identifies the type of chronotope in Tolkien’s major narrative as one close to folklore, idyll, and epic. Tolkien uses memory and its functioning to create a unique symphony of time in The Lord of the Rings. As a concept that reaches the depth of philosophical abstraction and at the same time appeals to a concrete textual context, Bakhtin’s chronotope is a surprisingly flexible tool for analyzing Tolkien’s experimental prose, which helps to explore the text as a laboratory of the genre (novel).
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