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..among its marvels is the greatest and most complete conceivable eucatastrophe.The Birth of Christ is the eucatastrophe of Man's history.
The essay "On Fairy-Stories" is an attempt to explain and defend the genre of fairy tales or Märchen.
It distinguishes Märchen from "traveller's tales" (such as Gulliver's Travels), science fiction (such as H. Wells's The Time Machine), beast tales (such as Aesop's Fables and Peter Rabbit), and dream stories (such as Alice in Wonderland).
But since the fairy-story deals with 'marvels,' it cannot tolerate any frame or machinery suggesting that the whole framework in which they occur is a figment or illusion." Tolkien emphasises that through the use of fantasy, which he equates with imagination, the author can bring the reader to experience a world which is consistent and rational, under rules other than those of the normal world.
He calls this "a rare achievement of Art," and notes that it was important to him as a reader: "It was in fairy-stories that I first divined the potency of the words, and the wonder of things, such as stone, and wood, and iron; tree and grass; house and fire; bread and wine." Tolkien suggests that fairy stories allow the reader to review his own world from the "perspective" of a different world.
"On Fairy Stories" was published on its own in an expanded edition in 2008.
The length of the essay, as it appears in Tree and Leaf, is 60 pages, including about ten pages of notes.Tolkien calls this "recovery", in the sense that one's unquestioned assumptions might be recovered and changed by an outside perspective.Second, he defends fairy stories as offering escapist pleasure to the reader, justifying this analogy: a prisoner is not obliged to think of nothing but cells and wardens. Tolkien which discusses the fairy-story as a literary form.He disagreed with Lang's broad inclusion in his Fairy Books collection (1889–1910), of traveller's tales, beast fables, and other types of stories.Tolkien had not intended to write a sequel to The Hobbit.The Lang lecture was important as it brought him to clarify for himself his view of fairy stories as a legitimate literary genre, and one not intended exclusively for children.One touchstone of the authentic fairy tale is that it is presented as wholly credible."It is at any rate essential to a genuine fairy-story, as distinct from the employment of this form for lesser or debased purposes, that it should be presented as 'true.' ... Faerie itself may perhaps most nearly be translated by Magic — but it is magic of a peculiar mood and power, at the furthest pole from the vulgar devices of the laborious, scientific, magician. Tolkien (January 3, 1892–September 2, 1973), celebrated as one of the greatest fantasy writers in history, gave a lecture titled “Fairy Stories,” eventually adapted into an essay retitled “On Fairy-Stories” and included in the appendix to A “fairy-story” is one which touches on or uses Faerie, whatever its own main purpose may be: satire, adventure, morality, fantasy.