Bilbo and Frodo: Book Titles

Perhaps this has been covered (sorry if it has), but I’m curious about contrasting Bilbo’s book title “There and Back Again” with Frodo’s “The Lord of the Rings...”. Bilbo’s seems more inward-facing, that is, talking about what HE did on HIS journey, where Frodo’s seems more outward-facing, that is, focused on Sauron and his downfall. I believe these differences have drastically different implications around who the main subject of the book is, where TABA is about Bilbo and LOTR is about Sauron. Given the fact that Bilbo’s story was written first, what does this say about Frodo (I.e., that he intentionally switched views), if anything?
 

Anthony Lawther

Well-Known Member
Perhaps this has been covered (sorry if it has), but I’m curious about contrasting Bilbo’s book title “There and Back Again” with Frodo’s “The Lord of the Rings...”. Bilbo’s seems more inward-facing, that is, talking about what HE did on HIS journey, where Frodo’s seems more outward-facing, that is, focused on Sauron and his downfall. I believe these differences have drastically different implications around who the main subject of the book is, where TABA is about Bilbo and LOTR is about Sauron. Given the fact that Bilbo’s story was written first, what does this say about Frodo (I.e., that he intentionally switched views), if anything?
I think it also comes down to the scope of the work: In Bilbo's tale he is free to focus more on the effects upon him and the Shire, with the effects on Dale and Erebor being somewhat peripheral. If Frodo were to do the same it would appear to be extremely arrogant, given the effects are on the whole of Middle-Earth (actually the whole of Arda, but we don't know that much without reference to other works.)

Taken together, the works focus on the One Ring; the first work unknowingly, the second work quite consciously.

P.S. Happy New Year!
 
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