Dr. Jared Charles Lobdell (born November 29, 1937) is an American literary critic, professor, and author who has written numerous books and articles on many different subjects, such as J.R.R. Tolkien, George Orwell, C.S. Lewis, and some of the other Inklings. He has taught at the Univeristy of Wisconsin, Pace University, Washington & Jefferson, and a dozen other colleges.
Lobdell was born in New York City, New York. He received degrees (BA, MBA and MS, and a PhD) from Yale University, University of Wisconsin, and Carnegie Mellon respectively.
Starting in 1966, Lobdell was a member of the Board of Contributors to National Review for eight years. In 1975, he compiled the first edition of A Tolkien Compass: Fascinating Studies and Interpretations of J.R.R. Tolkien's Most Popular Epic Fantasies, a collection of essays on Tolkien's works by eleven other professors and writers. In 1981 he authored England and Always: Tolkien's World of the Rings, a look at Tolkien's personal influences. In 2004 Lobdell wrote The World of the Rings: Language, Religion, and Adventure in Tolkien. A year later, he wrote The Rise of Tolkienian Fantasy.
Throughout the 1990's, he wrote a few fiction books.
In 2006, Lobdell contributed alongside many Tolkien scholars to Michael D. C. Drout's reference work The J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: Scholarship and Critical Assessment. In 2010, he contributed also to Paul Kerry and Sandra Miesel's essay collection Light Beyond All Shadow. Then in 2016, he wrote the two closing essays of Thomas Honegger and Maureen F. Mann's collection Laughter in Middle-earth: Humour in and around the Works of JRR Tolkien.