The middle third of the 20th century was a time of hyper-aggressive industry, invention, and progressivism. This portion of the 1900s was instrumental toward shaping modern popular culture. Two of the predominant works were J.R.R. Tolkien’s fantasy epic The Lord of the Rings and Frank Herbert’s political science fiction novel Dune. Both works inspired massive cult followings upon their release and grew in popularity largely due to the anti-war movement of the 1960s and ‘70s. They have each inspired countless works of inspiration that include some of the most popular movies and games from the 1970’s through the modern day. Their respective creations are so important because of this influence. These two masterpieces of literature have shaped our modern landscape of their respective genres. Thus, these two novels should be considered as the foundational pieces for our modern understanding of both science fiction and fantasy.
Collins, Nick, "The Impacts of Dune and The Lord of the Rings on American Culture" (2022). 4610 English: Individual Authors: J.R.R. Tolkien. 27.