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Medievalist Comics and the American Century$
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Chris Bishop

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781496808509

Published to University Press of Mississippi: May 2018

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781496808509.001.0001

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Conan the Barbarian (1970)

Conan the Barbarian (1970)

(p.97) Chapter 4 Conan the Barbarian (1970)
Medievalist Comics and the American Century

Chris Bishop

University Press of Mississippi

With the chapter on Conan the Barbarian, the focus of this study shifts away from the inter-translation of this earlier medievalism towards the establishment of the mythopoeic visions that dominate medievalist discourse today. Robert E. Howard’s pulp-fiction heroes were born out of his experiences in the flint-hard mining towns of Depression-era Texas and out of his desire, perhaps, to escape them. This chapter will contextualize that work within a greater analysis of fantasy literature, focusing in particular on the inter-relationship of Howard’s creations with those of J. R. R. Tolkien, and with the genesis of new and immersive fan experiences that included comic conventions, costume-play and fantasy role-playing games.

Keywords:   Robert E. Howard, J. R. R. Tolkien, Fantasy, Pulp, RPGs

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