We might as well call this theme "hope," because that's what perseverance is all about in The Two Towers. Hope in the strength of men and elves, hope in the power of good to triumph over evil, hope in your friends and companions, hope in yourself—there are so many things to hope for. And so much hope is required as things aren't going too well in Middle-earth.

Let's face it. Hope isn't something people talk about when it's a happy, peaceful time. Hope is something you turn to when your present reality is looking grim. Maybe relying on this abstract idea that everything will be okay in the end is a harmful kind of optimism, but in LotR, hope is all they have left when orcs are knocking down their doors.

Questions About Perseverance

  1. What does it mean to have hope? How is hope connected with other abstract words like faith and courage?
  2. How does hope help our characters carry on? What or who do they choose to place their hope in?
  3. When do our characters talk about hope? Compare the different times hope comes up and see what they have in common.

Chew on This

Hope is just a word used to manipulate the hearts and minds of people. Hope is never concrete, it is purposely vague and distant and exists only in the minds of those people foolish enough to give it meaning.

Hope is a necessary condition for victory. It is prophetic in that things hoped for will come true, not in a mystical sense, but because those who hope for it will see it through. Without hope, there is no cause for the efforts of man.

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