The most important point of Tolkien’s speech I find is that Tolkien finds this poem not to be an epic. The most prevalent and memorable way he does this in his speech is through the allegory of the tower.
Tolkien also studies and analyzes how the structure of the poem fits into the meaning of the article. Tolkien takes it upon himself to show how all of the critics are wrong in their criticisms of Beowulf.
Tolkien believes that Beowulf does not exactly fall into a category.
There are no Greek ties to it, nor from any other culture than the one it was written within. This I do agree with, this story can be thought of as a lament to the dead.
Short Description: Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics can be called the most important article on Beowulf of the 20th century.
Incredible as it may now seem, prior to Tolkien, Beowulf had been seen primarily as a curious linguistic-literary artifact, useful as a source of information about the early Germanic past (customs, language, laws, toponymy, etc.). Tolkien was the first critic to draw attention to the poem as a poem and to point out that the central literary structure of the tale revolves around the hero's battles with them monsters, which previous critics had dismissed as mere fabulous emendations to a tale whose primary value was historical. Editions: Originally published by Oxford University Press in 1937 (2nd ed. 1969) and by Folcort Press in 1969, Norwood Editions in 1975, R. In its simplest terms it is a contrasted description of two moments in a great life, rising and setting; an elaboration of the ancient and intensely moving contrast between your and age, first achievement and final death. This summarizes the structure of how the poem works, and how it so effectively captures the reader in the poem.The largest and most controversial part in the speech that Tolkien gives is where he says, “Beowulf is not an ‘epic,’ not even a magnified ‘lay’” (111).Tolkien believes that Beowulf is a heroic-elegiac poem.While I believe that it is true that this poem is an elegy, I also believe that it is an epic.Tolkien's original essay, Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics, was amazing -- if only for its impact on the study of Beowulf.I'm hard-pressed to think of any other essay that changed the world of literary studies so completely.He shows how Beowulf was meant to be analyzed, and I completely agree with it.If I were to have the knowledge and understanding of the Old English language and were to criticize this poem, I would definitely have had my view changed upon the poem by how Tolkien analyzed it.