I have enjoyed the fantasy genre since my teen years. There is both good and bad fantasy. Much of the best fantasy has been inspired by the works of J.R.R. Tolkien. James Ellis has written an interesting article on this for Newsweek.
Scholars, academics and casual enthusiasts have spilled tons of ink (both of the real and virtual varieties) about the exact definition of fantasy (does an epic poem such as Beowulf count?) and the genre’s origins (do Greek myths qualify? Romantic poems from the Middle Ages?). But the overwhelming influence of J.R.R. Tolkien on the genre remains a fundamental certainty. The British author didn’t invent fantasy, but he defined it in the minds of millions with his seminal works The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.
You can read the full article here.