I came across this interesting post about a paper on how The Hobbit is an allegory of doing a Ph.D. It makes several fascinating connections between the two.
This paper was presented by Ken Halland in 2006 at the 36th Annual Conference of the Southern African Computer Lecturers Association, Cape Town, South Africa.
In this paper, I show how The Hobbit by JRR Tolkien can be viewed as an extended allegory
for any challenging and arduous human endeavour, and in particular for tackling and
completing a PhD.
Read more in the full paper: Ken Halland, PhD in Middle Earth