Thursday, November 12, 2015

Group 4's Thesis on Gollum

Gollum is reflective of both the internal and external conflict that exist between Frodo and Sam and that are associated with the ring. Although Gollum is a significant character in his own right, he is also important as a device to reveal the true natures of Sam and Frodo.

6 comments:

Nienna said...

This is a very interesting thesis on Gollum. I suppose I had never thought about Gollum as reflective of the conflict between Frodo and Sam. Rather, I typically view him as a reflection of multiple conflicts. Gollum is undergoing a conflict within himself. His personalities constantly fight with each other. It reminds me of the angel and devil on your shoulder, except good and bad are not physically manifested as in this example. Gollum's angel and devil are a psychological manifestation. Gollum also showcases the conflict presented by the rings influence. It is an extreme example of the power of the One Ring. However, I do think this perspective of Gollum as a plot device for revealing Sam and Frodo's relationship is interesting and has merit. Although, I do not think the character's true natures are completely revealed through their treatment of Gollum alone. I think their true nature is revealed more gradually throughout the tale.

Arien said...

This is undoubtedly an interesting thesis with curious implications. Now having actually thought about it maybe the internal conflict within Gollum is less of a reflection and more of a result of being around Frodo and Sam. The true depth of Gollum's split psyche is never really observed until he became a constant companion of Frodo and Sam. Perhaps Gollum's time observing their friendship sparked a memory of what Smeagol used to be before he was Gollum. The bond between Frodo and Sam reignited the Hobbit inside Gollum adn exacerbated the conflict which had been predominately one sided for centuries.

Ulmo said...

I certainly agree with this statement, and would even go so far as to say that Gollum is the embodiment of the whole conflict of LOTR. Frodo's character develops throughout the story a bond with the ring and occasionally shows similarities with Smeagol when he is faced with giving up the power of the One Ring. Gollum originated as a hobbit, so he perpetuates both the best and worst aspects of Frodo's personality as he journeys towards a goal of peace and of finding himself.

Nessa said...

I would disagree with this statement in that I do not believe that Sméagol/Gollum reveals their true natures. I think that he reveals their faults and vices. Faced with Gollum, we see Sam's quick judgment and slow forgiveness. Sam does not let go of things quickly, whether love or hate, and Frodo

Nessa said...

is being conquered by the Ring. This is not who they truly are; it is their worst part--one side of them only.

Lórien said...

I think in many Gollum not only reflects the conflicts but also the changes that Frodo and Sam undergo as characters. Sam starts out as an innocent person who cares almost exclusively about his friends, family, and home. He has a positive view of the world as does not believe that evil is capable of conquering good. As the journey progress Sam comes to realize that this is not the way the world works. He develops a realistic view and this is relfect in his treatment of Gollum. Despite Gollum potential to be redeemed, he sees him for what he is, a traitor. Frodo one the other hand begins his journey considering Gollum and his like to be wholly evil. His comments to Gandalf about how it was a pity that Bilbo didn't kill him proves this. However, later on after bearing the ring for so long he begins to develop a certain empathy with Gollum. He understands that he the most wicked among creatures have the potential to be good.