Blog: August 2016

We use trivia to prove our depth of knowledge in a given topic but also to introduce people to new ideas or to revive interest in old things.  How many people do trivia contests motivate to read books or perform Internet searches?  But what we choose to include in our trivia lists suggests our priorities or interests are biased, either toward the simplistic or the popular.  “Hard trivia” is almost a non sequitur.  Why is it “hard trivia”?  Is not all trivia hard for the untutored audience?

Why do people focus on the more well-known details of Tolkien’s stories rather than dredge up the hard-to-find facts?  Perhaps it is simply because we don’t want to humiliate ourselves, but maybe it’s a reflection of where reader interests lie.  The people who make up trivia contests are no different from the people who participate in them.  We all love the story and immerse ourselves in the details.   And yet we paint those details with expectations and assumptions. (more…)

July 2016

As you will see below, July has been a deliciously busy month with conferences and interesting papers coming up. And due to the summer holiday season in Denmark, I’ve been able to keep up better than usual.

As I can see that the end of August and start of September is going to be quite busy for me, I had better warn that the next transactions may end up being somewhat delayed. If I haven’t posted when I take off for Oxonmoot on the 8th, there is a good chance that I’ll merge the August and September issues …