Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Tolkien 2010 at UVM — Schedule

Like last year, I’m not going to be able to attend the annual Tolkien conference at the University of Vermont, but that’s not going to stop me from promoting it to anybody who can. If you live within driving distance of Burlington, you really should stop by. The conference is free, thanks to the generosity of the university hosting it, so you have no excuses!

The seventh annual conference at UVM will be held in about two weeks’ time, April 9–11, 2010. The theme this year is “Tolkien in the Classroom”, with the keynote — quite appropriately, since she has a forthcoming book on this topic — delivered by Leslie Donovan of the University of New Mexico. Leslie will also be attending Mythcon in Dallas this coming July. The schedule for this year’s Tolkien 2011 at UVM follows:

TOLKIEN 2010, APRIL 9–11
Theme: Tolkien in the Classroom

Open-mike fireside Tolkien reading and performance
Fireside Lounge, Living/Learning
7:00–9:00 pm

Full Day Conference
Fleming 101 [Note the new location!]

Continental Breakfast, 8:15 am
[aka “The Ovarium” — hark, the legend is true!]

Session I — Tolkien in the Classroom I
8:30–10:00 am

  • “Reading the Ring as an Exemplary Figure: The Council of Elrond as a Model for Teaching The Lord of the Rings” – Andrew Hallam (University of Denver)
  • Teaching the ‘Long Defeat’: The Lord of the Rings in the Modern Classroom” – Marc Zender (Peabody Museum, Harvard University)
  • “Tolkien in the Environmental Classroom” – Matt Dickerson (Middlebury College)

Session II — Tolkien and Gender
10:00–11:00 am

  • “Feminine Duality in The Lord of the Rings” – Rich Fahey (University of Vermont)
  • “Tolkien on the Margins: Wanderers in Middle-earth” – Peter Grybauskas (University of Maryland)

Lunch break, 11:00–1:00 pm

1:00–2:00 pm
“Transgressing Boundaries: The Legacy of Teaching Tolkien” – Leslie Donovan (University of New Mexico)

Session III — Tolkien in the Classroom II
2:00–3:30 pm

  • “‘In the Beginning’: Tolkien and the Teaching of Creation Myths” – Kristine Larsen (Central Connecticut State University)
  • “Traditional Storytelling, Tolkien and Contemporary Fandom” – Anna Smol (Mount Saint Vincent University)

Afternoon break, 3:30–3:45 pm
Coffee, Tea, Cookies

Session IV — Roundtable Discussion
3:45–5:00 pm
Tolkien in the Classroom
[Audience participation encouraged]

Springle-ring Day Festival
CBW Green

Update: Marc Zender informs me that he has unfortunately had to withdraw his paper due to an academic conflict.


  1. Thanks for posting this. I've been looking for the program for weeks in order to have a sense of the conference, which I have not attended before. Chris said it would be posted this week, but I still can't find it online and have not received it. Although I am a bit bemused that you have the program before I do, I and immensely grateful to have this in order to think about how best to put the finishing touches on my talk. Bless you, Jason!

  2. Glad to help, Leslie. As for my having the schedule before you did, I just know how to nag. ;) This was the second time I had asked Chris for it, and I think I just caught him with a few moments to spare this time — luckily.

    So far as I can recall, Chris doesn’t tend to ever post it online (e.g., at the UVM website). When it’s been posted at all over the last few years, it’s usually been here at Lingwë, and occasionally at (where I am a sometimes active member).

  3. Ah! I guess my timing has been off and, of course, I'm kind of at sea because I have not yet attended this conference. Thanks for the info!

  4. The schedule is news to me as well! Looking good...but for one small typo-- my last name is "Grybauskas." No need for that first "s."

    At any rate, looking forward to this.

  5. Peter, thanks for letting me know. I’ve corrected the spelling of your name above. This was copy/pasted from the schedule Chris sent me, so don’t be too surprised if you find the typo in the printed schedule when you get to UVM. Alas.