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At Least Harry Potter is On Our Side

Discussion in 'Political Humor' started by vyo476, Oct 27, 2007.

  1. vyo476

    vyo476 Active Member

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    Potter is a lefty, says French philosopher

    by Hugh Schofield Fri Oct 26, 6:48 AM ET

    PARIS (AFP) - Harry Potter is a left-winger and the seven books by J.K. Rowling are a diatribe against Thatcherite Britain, a French philosopher said Friday on the day of the last novel's publication in French.


    "It must be said from the start that Harry Potter is deeply political and that the books speak of today's England," Jean-Claude Milner told the left-wing newspaper Liberation.

    "Reading it, one can see that J.K. Rowling -- like many cultured English people -- believes there was a real Thatcherite revolution, that it was a disaster, and that culture's only chance is to survive as an occult science."

    According to Milner, Harry's world of magic -- and especially the elite public school setting of the Hogwarts school of wizardry -- offer a means of resistance against a triumphant middle-class represented by the non-magic Muggles.

    "Harry's uncle and aunt -- Muggles par excellence -- live like heroes of Margaret Thatcher's world, in a neat little estate where all the houses are identical," he said.

    "One can equally say that modern England is a world where the Muggles have indeed taken power, first with Margaret Thatcher and then with Tony Blair -- a world where the omnipotence of the middle class is given free rein," he said.

    According to Milner -- a professor of linguistics at Paris university -- the scene in "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban" in which Harry's aunt is blown up like a balloon is a satire on Thatcher.

    "Here we can see a reference to (the film) 'The Great Dictator' by Chaplin, featuring an all-powerful middle class figure gone mad. And one cannot help but note that the aunt is called Marge -- a clear allusion to Thatcher."

    For Milner, Hogwarts provides a refuge for the minority who wish to preserve civilisation from the dangers of globalisation. And he says Rowling's use of Latin and Greek words in her magic vocabulary is a kind of antidote against the value-for-money society of modern Britain.

    "In the world of Hogwarts there are certainly inequalities. But at the same time, since culture is open to all, Hermione -- the child of Muggles -- can outperform Malfoy, the child of wizards," he said.

    "So what appears as elitist is in fact real equality, as opposed to the false equality of the Muggles. In this, Harry Potter is a war-machine against Thatchero-Blairism and the 'American way of life'.

    "J.K. Rowling is a real libertarian motivated by a desire to conserve. It is as if she is saying ... the real magicians are not Tony Blair's spin-doctors but people who know Latin and Greek."

    As for the evil Voldemort, he is the "super-spin doctor". A wizard himself, he is proof that culture alone is not enough to save the world. Power-mad, he differs from good wizards because he lacks "nobility of soul".

    "So we have on one side the Muggles, where oppression means power over things; and on the other hand Hogwarts, where knowledge enables one to resist the materialism of the Muggles -- but also opens the way to power over people.

    "This terrible power, which Voldemort seeks and which we call tyranny, is one of the themes of Harry Potter -- and indeed one of the themes of English literature since Dickens and Orwell," he said.

    Some British critics have in the past accused J.K. Rowling of conservatism for setting her books in a nostalgic era of boarding-schools and steam trains.

    The finale of the series -- "Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows" -- went on sale in France and Germany Friday, three months after it came out in the English-speaking world.



    I thought this was pretty funny, since it's probably a case of reading way too much into a work of literature.

    Just for kicks, is there anyone around here who is of the opinion that the Harry Potter series is evil? I've never actually talked with one of those people and I think it'd be fascinating.
     
  2. Bunz

    Bunz New Member

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    Never read any of the books. My first trip to Australia, I paid to sit in an air conditioned theater, while the original Harry Potter happened to be on the big screen.
    I was asleep in 15minutes. But oh to have A/C during the Aussie summer.

    VYO,
    Yeah I think Harry Potter is evil! I dont trust any fantasy books that are against god and written by a Brit! What does a British author know about writing in english? Having a left leaning gay guy portrayed in these books is against god. Plus they are so long, I have gained so much weight sitting on the couch over the last 5 years just trying to get through the first book.

    Signed,
    -Steve Ox.
     
  3. vyo476

    vyo476 Active Member

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    I started reading them when I was in the sixth grade. I could make a ton of excuses for why I continued reading them (sense of completion, childhood nostalgia, studying the style of a successful author since I want to be one myself, etc.) but the truth is that I just enjoyed them.

    The movies are TERRIBLE and do the books no justice.
    Your Steve impression is pretty good, but one vital component is that you have to end in a place that is completely and totally different from where you began.
     
  4. Bunz

    Bunz New Member

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    Vyo, I hold nothing against the books or anyone who enjoys them. It has turned probably millions of people to actually read. That is always a good thing. For me, it is simply a matter of what is a priority. I am not a big fantasy fan. I much prefer spy novels and non-fiction. For instance I have read the entire Jack Ryan series by Tom Clancy. Which is another example of movies not doing the book justice. My backlog of reading just doesnt fit it.

    As for the movies. Firstly, it was the last movie I saw in a theater, in 2001 I believe it was. Winter in Alaska when I left, -10F or so. Got to Australia is was +110. After 2 weeks of that. I would stand in the dairy section of grocery stores just to cool down. So when I found out movie theaters have air conditioning. I would have paid 20bucks to sit and nap for 3 hours as I did.

    As for Steveox, your right I should have ended it with...
    and thats why I dont read newspapers because they dont support Margaret Thatcher for Queen of the Moon!
     
  5. palerider

    palerider Well-Known Member

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    He doesn't mention the fact that for the vast majority to be brought back into line, ahd held there, a small cadre of elites with great power over them will manage all. No different than the soviet union or communist china.
     
  6. 9sublime

    9sublime Active Member

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  7. USMC the Almighty

    USMC the Almighty New Member

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    Haha, "Pokemon and the New World Order..."
     
  8. 9sublime

    9sublime Active Member

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    This guy isnt joking though.
     
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