Saturday, April 27, 2013

A-Z Challenge: X is for Xanaduism

The hardest letter of the English language to find something to fit the topic is the letter X.  I could think of one character from Harry Potter with an X, but it was his first name (Xenophilius) and not his last name (Lovegood) so I decided not to go with it.  I searched authors, but came up with nothing of significance to me.  I searched books and came up with nothing that would give me anything substantial to write about.  So, I searched literary terms.  I do believe the term "xanaduism" will give me something to write about.  Not ten facts and all that like I've been doing, but something and something is better than nothing.

What is xanaduism?  It is academic research that focuses on the sources behind imaginative works of literature and fantasy.  Why would someone do this?  To better understand the piece of work.   It is named after a study of this kind by John Livington Lowes titled Road to Xanadu, which was research on Samuel Taylor Coleridge's poem "Xanadu."

This brings to mind what English majors do.  We study stories and poems to death until they lose all mean.  I guess in a sense, xanaduism is a form literary criticism.  Take Harry Potter for example.  The focus would be on where Rowling got her ideas, doing research on the stories that influence her like Merlin and all that.

I'm sorry this doesn't really tell much, but xanaduism is a hard topic to research.  I don't have all the time in the world or I would go to the library and do real research, but right now, all I can rely on is my computer, so I go with what Google can give me and that's not much.

For more information check out the following sites:
Book of a Lifetime: The Road to Xanadu, John Livingston, Lowes
Amazon: The Road to Xanadu
Wikipedia: John Livingston Lowes
The Free Dictionary: Xanaduism
Literary Terms and Definitions: Xanaduism


  1. Excellent, X is a hard word to write about. Well done.


    1. Oh my gosh, it took me forever to write this! I had another topic in mind but couldn't find anything to actually write. X is a hard word for sure.