May 16, 2011
British Lit H11
Return of the King: Gollum: Quest for Power or Possession?
Gollum is a character or “characters” of mystery, deceit, lust, and darkness. He is a diverse being that is very difficult to fully understand due to his split personality. At times, he thrives and lives for the Ring of Power, but at other times, he is silently, desperately crying out to escape his evil personality that has taken over his entire mind, body, and soul. He is neither good nor bad, and continuously battles and struggles with himself to be one or the other. Gollum was not always a disgusting pathetic creature, but once a sweet, caring, hobbit. With his first encounter with the Ring, something came over him, a change that seemed like a desire for power. The question that adds to the diversity of Gollum’s double sided personality is was his desire for his Precious an evil scheme to rule the world with unlimited power, or a mere obsession over a material possession?
The Ring of Power’s history first began when the nine golden rings were created by the evil Sauron, but Gollum’s story began much later. Gollum, who was previously known as Smeagol, a hobbit, first came into contact with the Ring one day while fishing at the Great River with his hobbit friend Deagol. Deagol thought he had caught a large fish, but when he attempted to reel in the fish, he was pulled down to the bottom of the river. There at the bottom of the river, he saw something lustrous and picked it up. As soon as he washed it free of mud he realized it was a golden ring but, “Sméagol had been watching him from behind a tree, and as Deagol gloated over the ring, Sméagol came softly up behind,” (pg 53). As soon as Sméagol laid his eyes on the ring an instantaneous drive to have it took over his senses, so much that he killed his best friend to come into possession of it. Sméagol then became obsessed with his new love and unconsciously allowed it to ruin his life. He took...