Development of Snape's character through OotP, v.3

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Norbertha
May 10th, 2005, 12:56 pm
Welcome to version 3 of "Development of Snape's character through OotP". Here we discuss various aspects of everybody's favourite Potions Master :p in all five books.

Version 2 (http://www.cosforums.com/showthread.php?t=44732)

Version 1 (http://www.cosforums.com/cosarchive/showthread.php?t=20768&highlight=Development)

New posters: :welcome:

These are the last few posts from version two:

Snape's eyes do glint during the same Occlumency lesson during which Harry lies about the DoM dream and gets the narrowed eyes; shortly after that comes the bit about the job:

"That is just as well, Potter," said Snape coldly, "because you are neither special nor important, and it is not up to you to find out what the Dark Lord is saying to his Death Eaters."
"No--that's your job, isn't it?" Harry shot at him.
He had not meant to say it; it had burst out of him in temper. For a moment they stared at each other, Harry convinced he had gone too far. But there was a curious, almost satisfied expression on Snape's face when he answered.
"Yes, Potter," he said. his eyes glinting. "That is my job. Now, if you are ready, we will start again...." (p. 591).

This is odd....Snape starts off, irritated with Harry. Then Harry snaps at him, and, for a moment, Harry thinks he's in biiigg trouble. What I noticed, in looking at this again, is the staring at each other: Harry doesn't put it together (neither did I, until right now--or, at least, I'm making a speculative guess): Snape's checking him out, to see how much he knows about Snape's job. He is angry, until he realizes that Harry fired off a somewhat lucky shot.

In the "you have no subtlety" part, I do think Snape is annoyed with Harry: Harry has, on that page alone, had to be reminded to call Snape by his title and interrupted him twice, including when Snape is in the midst of explaining Legilimency: if Harry had kept quiet, he would've heard the whole explanation, but instead he plunges ahead with the wrong interpretation. I don't think this is Snape being really angry--just annoyed at the litany of disrespect and arrogance (as he sees it).

I probably should've included the actual line from GoF when Snape takes his leave of Dumbledore. I've said before that I think Snape's reaction here--and Dumbledore's worried look--come from the fact that Snape is about to make contact with Voldemort and Snape had better be bloody good at Occlumency. Snape is going off to the ultimate test. If he fails, he won't be back. JKR combines the Occlumency/spy adjectives with the emotion-indicating verb:

He looked slightly paler than usual, and his cold, dark eyes glittered strangely (p. 713).

That really seems to underscore the earlier idea about not 'kindling the fire'--and this would directly relate to what he tells Harry in Occlumency: to control his emotions. It seems pretty clear to me now that that is exactly what Snape is doing in the books every time he's "inscrutable" or "unfathomable" or his eyes are "cold."
Why both the indicators for emotion and no emotion? Are you thinking that Snape is moving from blocking his emotion to letting some emotion come to the front? Or are you thinking that the emotion is so strong, Snape can't quite control it there? (I wouldn't think the latter, or how would he control himself in front of Voldemort?)
I think the GoF combination description (sounds like something you'd order off the McDonald's menu!) reflects exactly what Snape feels right then: nervous/fearful/anticipatory and yet shutting those emotions down. He's literally between--leaving Dumbledore, but not yet at Voldemort's side--so the description is between as well. In other words, he's human enough to be afraid, and that shows in the "glittered," but he's gearing up the spy and going "cold" and "dark."
The "closing down" of emotions reminds me of PoA, when they are in Snape's office and Lupin comes in and sees the map. Harry notices a "closed look" in his eyes. That look is the reason many people wonder if Lupin practices Occlumency - he is trying to keep Snape from seeing what he knows about the map!

Also, in the GoF scene after Harry's name comes out of the Goblet, Chapter 17 "The Four Champions," Dumbledore and Snape both stare at Harry, and afterwards he feels as if his brain is "ransacked." There is quite a bit about Snape's reactions and expressions (sorry if you already discussed this):

“It's no one's fault but Potter's, Karkaroff,” said Snape softly. His black eyes were alight with malice. “Don't go blaming Dumbledore for Potter's determination to break rules. He has been crossing lines ever since he arrived here—”
“Thank you, Severus,” said Dumbledore firmly, and Snape went quiet, though his eyes still glinted malevolently through his curtain of greasy black hair.
Professor Dumbledore was now looking down at Harry, who looked right back at him, trying to discern the expression of the eyes behind the half-moon spectacles.
“Did you put your name into the Goblet of Fire, Harry?” he asked calmly.
“No,” said Harry. He was very aware of everybody watching him closely. Snape made a soft noise of impatient disbelief in the shadows.
“Did you ask an older student to put it into the Goblet of Fire for you?” said Professor Dumbledore, ignoring Snape.
“No,” said Harry vehemently.
“Ah, but of course 'e is lying!” cried Madame Maxime. Snape was now shaking his head, his lip curling.
“He could not have crossed the Age Line,” said Professor McGonagall sharply. “I am sure we are all agreed on that—”
“Dumbly-dorr must 'ave made a mistake wiz ze line,” said Madame Maxime, shrugging.
“It is possible, of course,” said Dumbledore politely.
“Dumbledore, you know perfectly well you did not make a mistake!” said Professor McGonagall angrily. “Really, what nonsense! Harry could not have crossed the line himself, and as Professor Dumbledore believes that he did not persuade an older student to do it for him, I'm sure that should be good enough for everybody else!”
She shot a very angry look at Professor Snape.

Snape's sound of disbelief may not be that he doesn't believe Harry, but that he realizes Harry is telling the truth, and he can't believe it. Snape stays behind with McGonagall and Dumbledore, perhaps to compare notes on what they saw in Harry's mind? Harry leaves with Cedric:

. . . “So,” said Cedric, with a slight smile. “We're playing against each other again!”
“I s'pose,” said Harry. He really couldn't think of anything to say. The inside of his head seemed to be in complete disarray, as though his brain had been ransacked.
“So… tell me…” said Cedric as they reached the entrance hall, which was now lit only by torches in the absence of the Goblet of Fire. “How did you get your name in?”
“I didn't,” said Harry, staring up at him. “I didn't put it in. I was telling the truth.”

The feeling as if his brain has been tampered with is similar to his reaction after the first Occlumency lesson when he feels as if his "brain had been pulled out through his nose."

One other thing, a little different. We were talking about Molly's reactions to things being similar to Snape's, and today I was reading OotP and came across this passage that sounded very much like Snape's attitude towards Harry, with a Weasley spin on it:

Chapter 16, OotP, pg. 342 American:

(Susan Bones asks Harry if it is true that he can make a Corporeal Patronus.)

"The phrase stirred something in Harry's memory.
"Er -- you don't know Madam Bones, do you?" he asked.
The girl smiled.
"She's my auntie," she said, "I'm Susan Bones. She told me about your hearing. So -- is it really true? You make a stag Patronus?"
"Yes," said Harry.
"Blimey, Harry!" said Lee, looking deeply impressed. "I never knew that!"
"Mum told Ron not to spread it around," said Fred, grinning at Harry. "She said you got enough attention as it was.""She's not wrong," mumbled Harry and a couple of people laughed.

Snape has been telling Harry and everyone else that "fame isn't everything" since Book One. He's also been known to say that Harry had too much attention and that he should be treated like anyone else, as when he talks to Fudge in PoA. People take it to mean that he is either jealous of Harry or that he despises Harry, but I disagree.

Here, notice all the grinning and laughing - the point about "attention" seems obvious considering how people are in awe of Harry and his fame. Again, Molly is just saying the same thing as Snape, but Harry takes it totally differently from her and sees the wisdom in it. I would say if Molly is "not wrong" (awkward phrase, isn't it?), then perhaps Snape is "not wrong," or possibly "right."
Dumbledore's eyes sometimes bore, too. When Harry is taken to Dumbledore's office after the attack on Justin, and Dumbledore asks if there is anything Harry would like to tell him, and Harry says no, I think Dumbledore's blue eyes bore into Harry's. But i don't have the book here, so I can't check right now.
In CoS, the phrasing is just that "Dumbledore considered him" (p. 208), when he asks Harry if he has anything to tell him. But I still think he's getting a dose of Legilimency...And, when younger Dumbledore talks to Tom Riddle, he's giving Riddle "exactly the kind of penetrating stare Harry knew so well" (p. 245).

And, silver ink pot--I think you're exactly right about the GoF scene (I had notes because Snape's eyes "glinted," but I didn't go anywhere with it). That was great! Harry definitely got double-teamed by Snape and Dumbledore; no wonder he feels as if someone's scrambled his brains...two someone's did! And your interpretation of Snape's 'disbelief' makes perfect sense.

I also like the Molly/Snape observation. First, I can't really comprehend the anti-Molly contingent. Yes, she can be overly mothering and annoying...but isn't that exactly what all mothers are, according to their teenaged kids? (silver ink pot--you can speak to this attitude!!) Of course, until the kid needs that mothering, and then Mom is a wonderful refuge--as Molly is at the end of GoF, when just being hugged by somebody is almost enough to make Harry finally break down. Molly just seems to me to be the ultimate Earth Mother. And she's not the only character in the books who tells Harry virtually the same thing that Snape does, only Harry's attitude changes everything about how both he and the reader perceive it (the Patronus/Occlumency contrast immediately springs to mind!).

One more thing about the fireplace, which I kept thinking about after signing off last night. It also goes back to our previous discussion of whether or not Snape is emotionally empty or if he, once upon a time, in his younger days, was quite emotional. I think our consensus was that all indications are Snape has learned to shut himself off--not that he is naturally lacking a "softer side" (not really how I was going to put it, but the coffee hasn't kicked in yet and the vocabulary is lagging this morning....). The fireplace becomes an excellent image for Snape: the banked fire is cold and dark, but it has the potential to blaze. I said somewhere before (I so lose track, between this and Decon!) that Snape's great capacity for hate and anger seems to hint at an equal capacity in the other direction...especially if one is going to adhere to that Gothic hero influence......

And--as for JKR's repetition...When I first started reading the books, I noticed the repeats. My first response was--well, it's a kid's book and she's repeating so it's all kept clear in the kids' minds as they read, especially asa the books are being published one at a time. To a certain extent, I still do think that's part of it. However, as the narrator of the books aged along with Harry, I realized that JKR was doing something else: she was assigning key phrases and adjectives to certain characters that had great significance for those characters. It's a literary technique that goes back ages--Homer uses it in the Illiad and the Odyssey: catchphrases that instantly identify the character and point up the important traits that figure into the plot.

subtle science
May 10th, 2005, 1:20 pm
Thank you, Norbertha!

I'd venture a guess that version#1 might be available through the archives link now--it may have been part of the purge a bit ago. Random guesses!

[Scary personal information: at 4:45 AM, I head to the gym; by the time I'm here online, I'm consuming mass quanities of coffee to wake up. I do not wake my body up earlier, because then it would realize that I'm dragging it off to the gym at ungodly hours of what is still the night!!]

Okay--new version! Everybody else--wake up and post!

mistymoon
May 10th, 2005, 1:43 pm
I like the idea of "catchphrases" being used to describe the characters.Has anyone written down all the phrases used to describe Snape?I'm starting my reread of the series before the release of HBP so i'll try to pay attention.

clkginny
May 10th, 2005, 1:45 pm
The idea of Snape's understated responses to most things also puts me in mind of his school days nickname. Regardless of his ability at Occlumency/Ligilimency (although I do believe it is extremely relevant), I think the control he learned had a lot to do with being teased about his emotional responses. When we talk about his depth of passion that indicates that when he was young he had less control over his responses. As time went on, he must have learned that he was better off if he could lock all that up inside. If he didn't learn that lesson at home, the Marauders would have made sure he learned it at school. (I honestly think with what we saw in PoA and OoTP, that his temper was awful when he was young)

subtle science
May 10th, 2005, 1:51 pm
mistymoon--Are you trying to send me back through all of the books again today??? : ) !

clkginny--I quite agree. While what we see of his childhood is his crying, you don't have the temper he has as an adult without its coming from somewhere: that's not something you develop as you get older. Not like the control. I, too, think that Snape learned at Hogwarts to wrap himself up pretty tightly and not let others see his emotions--whether it be hurt or anger. And from that, I would imagine, came the skill at Occlumency--I do wonder how he became aware that that branch of magic existed...was he looking for something that would help him attain control? It seems late in the game, but did Dumbledore teach it to him when he became the spy during the first war--that seems late but logical....?

mistymoon
May 10th, 2005, 1:57 pm
:evil: Only if you want to....just kidding :elaugh:.I just thought maybe someone had already done this in the previous version of this thread.

clkginny
May 10th, 2005, 2:01 pm
I've speculated before about whether Occlumency is a skill that you must have innate ability for (like Harry with flying), or if it is strictly a "must be learned" skill. I am currently leaning toward the "innate" ability side of things. It wouldn't surprise me if Dumbledore taught him to harness it, but I think the control that he tends to exhibit is a sign of the ability. I think the key to my idea is the fact that Snape became a "successful" spy. (By successful, I mean alive) Whatever the catalyst that led him to change sides, he would have had to hide from Voldemort. If he hadn't learned Occlumency from Dumbledore before that time, that indicates that he would have enough innate ability to hide his thoughts long enough to recieve "formal" training.

James Macca
May 10th, 2005, 2:07 pm
i think occlumency is innate as it has a lot to do with the character of the person..
Harry, for example, listens to his emotions a great deal, and im not just talking about anger, as may have bene the case with snape in the days of the marauders.. But he acts blidly out of emtion and as dumbledore says at the end of OotP.. it is his greatest strength..
The witch or wizard has to have the innate ability to be able to maintain control of their feelings in order to ,aster occlumency and probably legilimency as well..
But harry gets stronger when hes angry, or afraid, or desperate for any particular emotional reason.. For example, the uber patronus in PoA and the cruciatis curse in OotP..
Bellatrix basically says, "wow, that wouldve been good if u were more of a vindictive person.." i even think she admires his strength in casting it..
haha, so yes, i believe it is innate and can be learned only to an extent..

severa78
May 10th, 2005, 2:10 pm
Wow! Version 3!

Round of chocolate for everyone as a celebration! Double chocolate for Subtle for being the "Queen Bee" and for the extra work she just put in with all those quotes of eyes and lips! :clap:

Now back to business.

Chiev and Norbertha, thank for liking my point on fire.. :blush:

I like the discussion of the nature of Occlumency. I think it is both an ability and a skill. Just like flying on a broomstick, you can have natural talent, but you can get better by training.
I can see Snape having a very good natural talent born out of his days in school, but then needing to sort of fine-tune it to make him a skilled Occlumens (Skilled enough to survive a walk-out from LV).

There was something else I was going to say, but with the thread change it got lost in my mind somewhere.. I'll post when I'll catch it! :lol:

silver ink pot
May 10th, 2005, 3:20 pm
:p Thank you, Norbertha, for letting us start over! :)

I'll repeat my fireworks for Subtle Science who had 360 posts on the last thread! You rock, Queen Bee!

http://bestsmileys.com/fireworks/2.gif

I also brought along some Chocolate Frogs from the Deconstructing Marauders Thread.:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v624/sip44/ChocolateFrogs.jpg

In relation to the Snape/fireplace image, which I love :tu: ~ what about the scene in Book One in which Hermione "sets Snape on fire"? In doing so, Hermione sets about a course of events which thwarts Quirrelmort and helps Harry win the big game. Also, it sets up the fact that Snape was the one trying to save Harry's life.

Hermione is often associated with Fire. She burns a path through the snow in one of the books to get to Hagrid's Hut. She makes fire in a jar in Book One. She can "dry clothes" with her wand. Maybe this is a clue to seemingly "cold" Snape.

Hermione is totally logical and lives for knowledge, but that means all kinds of knowledge. I was reading OotP last night and I'm so impressed with the fact that JKR doesn't make Hermione a one-dimensional know-it-all. She is an "emotionally intelligent" know-it-all. :angel: Her in-depth explanation of Cho Chang's feelings, and her rebuke of Ron that "not all of us have the emotional range of a teaspoon" is so Snapish that I think it is a clue to his character. I don't believe he is "empty" at all - in fact, the opposite. We just don't know everything yet, and that will be a lesson for Harry.

We have the "Goblet of Fire," which is empty except for every four years when it bursts into flame for the Triwizard Tournament (which becomes the "Quad-Wizard Tournament.") It is another "empty" vessel that gets set on fire.

Then there is the whole image of the Phoenix, whose "Order" Snape is a member of. The Phoenix has to catch fire in order to be reborn, and healing is connected with the eyes of the bird. Since JKR mentions Snape's eyes so often, and I think he looks at Harry as much as any other grown-up in the books, I believe that there is some healing going on, or will go on, between Harry and Snape.

We have the nickname "Snivellus" and the memory of crying - another Phoenix connection. And my goodness, think of all the crying people in OotP - Molly over her "woes," Madame Trelawney over her persecution, Cho over Cedric, Marietta over her face, Hannah Abbot over exams, and by the end of the book, Dumbledore and Harry himself. I believe JKR is foreshadowing the sad things yet to come with all this crying. But she is also letting us know who has the depth and who doesn't. Edited to Add: Hagrid cries in every book, and he also soothes people and animals who are crying. He is also a parallel to Snape in that he is turned upside down by a "bigger giant" in the Chapter Hagrid's Tale.

Only Luna and Hermione don't seem to cry, although Hermione "fakes" crying to fool Umbridge. Yet we know they are both full of feelings and they both explain emotional things to Harry, things about death, women, bullying, and getting over things (as Luna says, "have some pudding.")

I see Snape in a similar way - he can talk about "clearing your mind of emotion" because he has to do that so HE KNOWS. Remember in GoF, when Fred and George say that about Barty Crouch, who is teaching them all those curses in class? "He Knows" about the Dark Arts - indeed he does. But what does Snape tell Harry? He tells him how the Dark Lord will "make short work of him" if he "wears his heart on his sleeve." He isn't talking about the Dark Arts, but about what "he knows" -- how to hide feelings from Voldemort.

Also, he has literally been "burned" by Voldemort. He has been "branded" with the Death Head, and it "burns black" as he tells Fudge in GoF. Harry has been "burned" by Voldemort, too, with his lightning-bolt scar. I don't think either one of them wants anyone else to go through their same experiences. Harry even agrees to teach the DA, not so much because of OWL exams, but because he realizes the others might not stand a chance in a fight. That is so similar to what Snape tells Harry - "he'll make short work of you, Potter"!

Well, I think I'm on fire this morning, lol. I never meant to write all that. My "muse" is flowing, or something. Must be the Chocolate Frogs plus Folgers Dark Roast Coffee. :D

(And I have my coffee without going to the gym, because I'm a slob, unlike Subtle, lol. :whistle: All I've done today is sit in my car in the rain at bus stops and traffic jams, convincing children that there are still two weeks of school left and they have to keep working. My pep talks go over like Snape giving extra homework during Easter Break. :grumble: )

subtle science
May 10th, 2005, 3:24 pm
I think my post count verifies the fact that, at least on this thread, I never shut up.....

Welcome, James Macca.

I lean toward the innate ability theory as well. Clearly, one can be taught it--as Harry is--but Snape says it's similar to the skill Harry used in throwing off the Imperius curse, so he and Dumbledore must think Harry's got the ability, too. And Snape, as clkginny and severa78 point out, had to be able to hide his true feelings from Voldemort when the idea first came to him that he wanted out of the DEs; it makes sense, then, that either Snape knew Occlumency before he went to Dumbledore, or that Dumbledore refined the ability that Snape already possessed--rather as Snape is trying to direct Harry in his lessons. So--if Snape had the talent, but not the refinement before, did he know that such a branch of magic existed, or did he learn that from Dumbledore? A bit that occurs to me is that the Occlumency also fits in with Snape's developing the ability to use wnadless magic, too--as we've discussed before, he can't do it in SWM, but he can by PS/SS. He's also none too emotionally controlled in SWM--so, is that episode the trigger point of his learning these types of magic? I'd vote yes.

And thanks to Norbertha and Chievrefueil for their avatar suggestions. I couldn't decide on my own at all--I mean, pick from the entire world on the internet...too many choices!!!! Heck, their offer of three choices almost caused me to melt down...................(then I figured I could always save the other two...)

silver ink pot
May 10th, 2005, 3:29 pm
If anyone wants an avatar of anything, I love to make them! I have a Photobucket account too, so I can give you the URL also to make it easy. Same with Signatures - just tell me what you want a picture of, and I'll look for it and resize it. :blush:

subtle science
May 10th, 2005, 3:47 pm
silver, silver, silver ink pot--Did I not just say that a choice of three--which, to a normal person, is not much--nearly caused me to have a breakdown??? Get thee behind me!

I love your 'fire' post. Wow. What's really interesting are the breakdowns of the usually controlled people--Harry, Molly, and Dumbledore. Harry and Molly may shout, but they're not teary people; typically, they're stoic. In contrast, Hermione and Luna are quite open about all of their feelings--they don't go to extremes as Molly and Harry may do with their temper losses (another parallel to Snape)...or even as Cho does with her endless waterworks. Hermione only cries in PS/SS, when she thinks she has no friends...Hmmm. And Luna is blithely composed; I love her last scene in OotP, when she's trying to gather her belongings, and the calm way she speaks about the other students' mindless, unthinking, petty cruelty to her.

silver ink pot
May 10th, 2005, 4:00 pm
silver, silver, silver ink pot--Did I not just say that a choice of three--which, to a normal person, is not much--nearly caused me to have a breakdown??? Get thee behind me!

:lol: So sorry to pelt you with avatars first thing in the morning! :rotfl:

I love your 'fire' post. Wow. What's really interesting are the breakdowns of the usually controlled people--Harry, Molly, and Dumbledore. Harry and Molly may shout, but they're not teary people; typically, they're stoic.

:tu: Thank you, and great point about the stoicism! You could really write an essay about both Stoicism and Spartanism in many of the characters. Snape is a perfect example of both traits - again with an unlit fireplace. He lives without the "comforts" of life.

In contrast, Hermione and Luna are quite open about all of their feelings--they don't go to extremes as Molly and Harry may do with their temper losses (another parallel to Snape)...or even as Cho does with her endless waterworks. Hermione only cries in PS/SS, when she thinks she has no friends...Hmmm.

Yes! To me, the material point is that Hermione is capable of crying, when she is hurt deeply enough or when she is truly moved. Otherwise, she lets things roll off her back.

And Luna is blithely composed; I love her last scene in OotP, when she's trying to gather her belongings, and the calm way she speaks about the other students' mindless, unthinking, petty cruelty to her.

Luna is a rare gem, absolutely! She has such resignation as she pins her doleful note on the bulletin board. No revenge for her - isn't that interesting?

severa78
May 10th, 2005, 4:01 pm
Hermione only cries in PS/SS, when she thinks she has no friends...Hmmm. And Luna is blithely composed; I love her last scene in OotP, when she's trying to gather her belongings, and the calm way she speaks about the other students' mindless, unthinking, petty cruelty to her.Hermione also cries in PoA when the guys are mad at her because of the Firebolt (and she's starting to crack under the strain). We don't see her but Hagrid tells Harry she does.

Luna's composure at addressing the cruelty she gets made me think that Snape might have chosen a similar strategy after SWM: ignore them, they're just being silly, everything will be alright in the end. Well maybe not the last part, as he seems much more bitter than her.
But the way Luna detached herself from resentment or other emotions looks vaguely familiar. Luna and Snape were both regarded as the "oddball" and they both started living in their own world to shut off the bullies.
Maybe Snape reads the Quibbler? :rotfl:

Forgot to thank Norbertha for starting the thread.. shame on me!

Silver - as soon as I've made up my mind on a new sig (choices...) can I call you? Great post on fire, by the way! :tu:

silver ink pot
May 10th, 2005, 4:11 pm
Hermione also cries in PoA when the guys are mad at her because of the Firebolt (and she's starting to crack under the strain). We don't see her but Hagrid tells Harry she does.

Thank you! I had forgotten that!

Luna's composure at addressing the cruelty she gets made me think that Snape might have chosen a similar strategy after SWM: ignore them, they're just being silly, everything will be alright in the end. Well maybe not the last part, as he seems much more bitter than her.

Very possible that he tried to ignore them. And I wrote earlier about the possibility that Snape's belongings had also been tampered with by the Marauders. My thought is that the "curses" he may have put on James might have come about through putting a "thief's curse" on his books or other things. Dumbledore mentions the "thief's curse" in the Intros to Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, as well as Quidditch Through the Ages. The clue to that is Marietta the Sneak (I just realized "sneak" is an anagram for "snake" :huh: ) The curse wasn't on Marietta, but on the document she signed.

But the way Luna detached herself from resentment or other emotions looks vaguely familiar. Luna and Snape were both regarded as the "oddball" and they both started living in their own world to shut off the bullies.
Maybe Snape reads the Quibbler? :rotfl:

Snape reads Witch Weekly, so why not? :p

Forgot to thank Norbertha for starting the thread.. shame on me!

We can't survive without Norbertha! :clap:

Silver - as soon as I've made up my mind on a new sig (choices...) can I call you? Great post on fire, by the way! :tu:

Thank you, and sure, I'll make you a siggy. Whatever pictures you don't want, just send them to Subtle (Just Kidding!). :rotfl:

subtle science
May 10th, 2005, 4:32 pm
silver ink pot, you have quite the little cruel streak going this morning! : ) !!!

This is just a random thought, but I was mulling over the crying...JKR makes quite the distinction between the types of crying. Over in Decon, Pettigrew was being discussed (eeww) and I quoted the passages about his crying in the Shrieking Shack scene of PoA and the graveyard of GoF. In no way is Pettigrew's crying a cause for empathy from the reader--in fact, he's off-putting. So is Cho, with her nonstop carrying on. Yet Trelawney, for all her being spacey and irritating, evokes sympathy when she truly is upset in OotP; you can't not sympathize with Hermione; and how can you be immune to Dumbledore's losing it in OotP??? Lupin doesn't quite get to the point of shedding tears in OotP--rather like Harry's just barely containing himself in Molly's arms in GoF--but, still, even these "dry" moments have a major impact. Very deftly, JKR makes it clear who deserves sympathy and respect for justified tears and who doesn't--who's sincere and who isn't.

As for Luna--she doesn't appear to have suffered anything quite as extreme as SWM; she seems to be subjected to the barrage of petty nastiness on a daily basis--but no physical assault. Her personality appears quite different from Snape's--she's easy-going and understanding, mild and accepting...there's just not much of a fighter in her, in contrast to Snape's intensity.

severa78
May 10th, 2005, 5:11 pm
Crying.. I wonder if and when we're going to see Snape crying. When's it going to finally be too much for him? He's going through quite a strain already..
I would just love him more if I could see him crying, but I wonder if he would do it in front of Harry (so that we may know) or if Harry would catch him off-guard (as in Book one he catches Filch tending to Fluffy's bite)

Subtle - I knew you were going to say that about Luna and Snape! :eyebrows: I should have posted it with a disclaimer..

I didn't mean for Luna and Snape to have the same attitude, but more of the two sides of the coin. There are different ways of shutting the world out.
I wouldn't say Luna is not a fighter. I actually think it takes more strength to be accomodating than to react, so I would take Snape as the weaker of the two (maybe I should join IWBTBIGOIASSSS, except I never considered myself bullied).

I don't think that physical assault should be regarded as much worse than what Luna gets, and we really have no proof that she hasn't recieved physical assaults, either.
My idea is that the stronger attitude she takes comes from the love of her father (and of her mother as long as she lived), not by how less badly she's been bullied; whereas Snape never got much love at home as far as we know, so he picked the bitter side of shutting off people.

I like the idea of theft spell on his things, but I doubt Sirius and Lupin were referring to that in "never missed an opportuinity..", it sounded more voluntary.

subtle science
May 10th, 2005, 7:17 pm
And I knew I'd be called on the "not a fighter" comment--I mean it literally: Luna doesn't physically confront those who attack her, whereas Snape does. And I actually think verbal/emotional abuse is worse than physical--but SWM is both; the physical attack on him isn't really that bad--except for the depth of humiliation it causes. There doesn't seem to be any evidence that Luna has experienced a SWM, just as there no indication that she could/would respond physically. Snape is the flip side: he gets physically assaulted and he retaliates physically. And the parental situation is a flip side as well (hmmm..what then does that say about Snape's mother..or, in a complete opposite flip...his father?).

I do wonder if we'll see something as dramatic as tears from Snape--after all, JKR gave us Dumbledore breaking, and that was pretty dramaatic at the end of OotP. I did read a fanfiction someplace (don't ask), wherein the author had an interesting take on this. I can't abide a suddenly weepy, Oprah/Dr. Phil confessional Snape (eeeww), but this writer made a believable case for how/why Snape might break. The way she did it was simply to have Snape lose it, without any warning or indication beforehand--a case of 'the last straw' of pressure on him. I just found it an interesting way of seeing a scenario...I myself would guess that the most likely moment would occur with Dumbledore's death (if Dumbledore doesn't die--that would be the plot twist that would truly shock me!).

Apropos of nothing, almost: You know, it could solve my inability-to-choose dilemma if I just gave everybody else free rein to change my avatar for me on, say, a weekly or biweekly basis....

Mrs Flamel
May 10th, 2005, 7:34 pm
To add just a bit to SIP's fire analysis: Lupin is also associated with fire. In his very first scene in PoA, he conjures a flame in his hand without using a spell. I don't know what is more important here: the fire itself or the conjuring without saying a spell.

On the subject of Legilimency being an innate talent, oddly enough, the question came up in the Lupin thread yesterday. Here's my comment (http://www.cosforums.com/showthread.php?p=2223139#post2223139):

My take: compare Legilimency/Occlumency to musical talent. Some are born with it, some are not; those with musical talent have it to varying degrees. Anyone can take piano lessons and learn how to put their fingers on the correct keys to make music; some can do so more naturally and can learn music more easily. If one is born with musical talent, it still must be nurtured and developed to become a skill.

Legilimency is probably similar: one may have the talent for it (as Harry seems to), but it is something one must develop and practice to become skilled at it. It is probably something that someone can learn without inherent talent--though a person without talent would never be able to perform with the same ease and elegance a naturally talented Legilimens could. Does that make sense?


I like the Snape / Luna contrast (you could throw that in the mirrors thread as a foil!) I also think that Luna has a deeply-ingrained sense of confidence in herself. She doesn't seem to desire social acceptance/recognition as Snape does--I couldn't ever see her being upset over a Ministry recognition slipping through her fingers. Nor, as subtle pointed out, is she the type to retailiate physically.
All the reasons for their difference here are good, but I think her self confidence is another. Snape doesn't seem to have much confidence--at least not socially. He has plenty of confidence in his abilities and his intelligence. I also get the feeling that Luna is close to her father and was to her mother. There seems to be much more love in her life than in Snape's--not that Snape's family life is absolutley understood, but it doesn't come across as warm and cuddly so far.

Tonksaholic
May 10th, 2005, 7:56 pm
I think it is both an ability and a skill. Just like flying on a broomstick, you can have natural talent, but you can get better by training.
I agree completely. I think that maybe anybody could be trained to be an Occulumens(sp) but that yo not some natural ability to become exceptionally good at it, like Snape needed to be to resist the skilled Legilemancy of Voldemort in his role as spy for the Order.


As for Snape and Luna, I think that although they may both have been mocked, ridiculed and bullied...that is no reason to make them seem so similar. Luna clearly turns the other cheek and quite blatantly ignores the bullies, keeping her emotions in check. Whereas Severus (only fools wear their emotions out on their sleeves{oh the irony}) Snape reacts to this letting his emotions get the better of him, as shown in SWM. However, OotP Snape seems more controlled in his emotions, but he still lets them show...kicking harry out of his office and refusing to teach him Occumelancy(sp) on a whim.

subtle science
May 10th, 2005, 8:57 pm
"On a whim?" Oh, my.

The Snape/public recognition issue intrigues me. The only word we have that Snape was allegedly so disappointed at not getting an acknowledgement by the MoM is Lupin's...not exactly gospel. When Lupin says this, he's reaching for something to explain what Snape did. Maybe it was all because he lost the Order of Merlin...but he never says so. What does seem to fit is that Snape thinks Lupin is an untrustworthy liar abusing Dumbledore's trust, only Dumbledore won't see that "fact." Therefore, he takes matters into his own hands and outs Lupin. Lupin's easy way out: blame it on the disappointment. Rather like saying that Snape was jealous of James' Quidditch skills...it seems an easy way of dodging a far more complicated reasoning that would take some time to discuss/explain/justify.

Then there is the question of why wanting acknowledgement becomes a negative when it's Snape...It seems to be something most people do want: to have others recognize achievement. Snape, in fact, works behind the scenes for the vast majority of the time--he doesn't indicate that he is overly concerned with getting recognized for what he does.

Interestingly enough, in all of his cat fights with Harry, he has yet to throw in Harry's face th fact that he has saved the wretched boy's neck a number of times without a scrap of gratitude forthcoming. It's in the same category as Snape's never mentioning Lily--what he doesn't say becomes significant. Harry's lack of gratitude and continuing failure to acknowledge what Snape has done for him would seem to be a perfect topic for a patented Snape rant about Harry's characters flaws. If Snape were really so eager for public recognition.

And then there's the revelation of the Dark Mark in GoF: not quite the action of someone who's looking for approval from the Ministry. However, it is the action of someone who does care for Dumbledore and would throw his own reputation down for the Headmaster.

winky22
May 10th, 2005, 9:29 pm
I like the discussion of the nature of Occlumency. I think it is both an ability and a skill. Just like flying on a broomstick, you can have natural talent, but you can get better by training.
I can see Snape having a very good natural talent born out of his days in school, but then needing to sort of fine-tune it to make him a skilled Occlumens (Skilled enough to survive a walk-out from LV).


That is what i think as well :tu:

You may have the gift but learning more makes you stronger and better. I've been thinking does snape know all what Harry as been up to? If he can see into his mind, he must know alot of things that Harry thinks he doesn't if you know what i mean.

silver ink pot
May 10th, 2005, 9:50 pm
If he can see into his mind, he must know alot of things that Harry thinks he doesn't if you know what i mean.

I've wondered that, to, Winky! :tu: Does he see Hermione breaking into the cabinet to make the Polyjuice Potion, for instance?

To me, what we don't see enough of (or any of) is Harry's Parents. Granted, he was very young when the Dursleys got him, but his earliest memories must go back further than Dudley riding a tricycle. :huh: Or is JKR just not telling us what Snape sees for some future reason.

To add just a bit to SIP's fire analysis: Lupin is also associated with fire. In his very first scene in PoA, he conjures a flame in his hand without using a spell. I don't know what is more important here: the fire itself or the conjuring without saying a spell.

Great - and thank you! My immediate reaction to reading your post was that doing wandless magic is more important, because that is a clue that we should watch Lupin carefully and see what he does at certain times.

But I do think the fire is some sort of guidepost, similar to the "word codes" JKR uses to influence our thinking about certain characters - Trelawney is always an "old fraud." Mrs. Figg is always an "old bat." Snape is a "greasey git."

It's like, "FIRE! Pay attention."

I'm glad we're talking about fire imagery, because I'm anticipating fire being important in HBP due to the hints on the British cover. Also, if this is Lily's story, then we may find out how that fire started at Godric's Hollow. There are also the hints about Fudge and the Heliopath army, and Dumbledore's hint about the "fiery" room at the DoM that melted Sirius's knife. She made a statement about Muggles noticing things happening now that Voldemort is back, and I'm wondering if a drought might be in the making. There were clues in the last book about water restrictions in Little Whinging, and on the news they are talking about a drought. Drought first - fire next? One way to get Harry away from his "hidey hole" is to "smoke him out." It's been done in about a million westerns. :evil:

Tonksaholic
May 10th, 2005, 10:08 pm
There were clues in the last book about water restrictions in Little Whinging, and on the news they are talking about a drought. Drought first - fire next? One way to get Harry away from his "hidey hole" is to "smoke him out." It's been done in about a million westerns.
Silver ink pot-don't you think that you may be just hoping to see something, that you are finding some rather outlandish pathetic fallacy in the books. Although if it comes true...you are a genius? (btw, i think its a great idea...i was just playing devils advocate)

subtle science
May 11th, 2005, 12:03 am
Okay--curiosity: What's the pathetic fallacy in the books?

winky22
May 11th, 2005, 12:06 am
I've wondered that, to, Winky! :tu: Does he see Hermione breaking into the cabinet to make the Polyjuice Potion, for instance?

Yes :tu:

He could know everything they get up to and how does he do it does he have to look into a persons eyes of does he just feel their thoughts anyway? What about the time in GOF when Harry had just come back from the prefects bathroom and he gets stuck with his invisabilitie cloak on. Could he feel that he was there, we know Moody told him he wasn't but what if he knew. He tries to grab the cloak of him in PS/SS! Or did he just hear Harry breathing?

Of course there are all the thoughts about Sirius did he already know? Did Dumbledore tell him before Sirius comes out of his dog form in GOF.

There are soo many questions!

subtle science
May 11th, 2005, 12:42 am
In GoF, when Harry is stuck on the stairs, Snape seems to use logic to figure out where Harry is--the key is the Marauder's Map, which Snape recognizes as Harry's:

But Snape's black eyes were darting from the egg in Filch's arms to the map in Moody's hand, and Harry could tell he was putting two and two together, as only Snape could....
"Potter," he said quietly.
"What's that?" said Moody calmly, folding up the map and pocketing it.
"Potter!" Snape snarled, and he actually turned his head and stared right at the place where Harry was, as though he could suddenly see him. "That egg is Potter's egg. That piece of parchment belongs to Potter. I have seen it before. I recognize it! Potter is here! Potter, in his Invisibility Cloak!" (p. 473, US paper).

In PS/SS, Snape doesn't know Harry is there--that's the film version: that choice seems to be part of the film's building up to the revealing of Snape's Legilimency/Occlumency ability. In both PS/SS and CoS, there is much emphasis on Snape's stare--in CoS, for instance, there's the parallel to the PS/SS grabbing at the Cloak, when Ginny is identified as the student who's been taken; after the other teachers have turned and walked away, before he leaves, Rickman's Snape turns toward where Harry and Ron are hidden, as if he senses them there. (Actually, all that does give me hope that Occlumency will not be injudiciously cut from OotP.)

albie
May 11th, 2005, 9:10 am
i'm glad i saw this thread !!! i simply LOVE severus and would love to discuss him to death . i'm -er- gladder because i get to post this following SUBTLE"S occlumency thingy. what i have a doubt about is this - the limits of legilimency . do you have to whip out your wand everytime and SAY "legilimens" to be able to look into a person's mind ? i seriously doubt this , for i think a characteristic , piercing look will suffice . why? because , we know of two legilimens in the story so far , and both of them have VERY characteristic , VERY well described looks , Albie and Severus . they have subjected Harry to these kind of looks from time to time and everytime , Harry has felt as though they were looking right through him (esp Albus . Severus ,on the other hand, he likens to a hippogriff's look , kinda "boring" into his eyes) . SO what say you , subtle?
Is this -er-SUBTLE legilimency ?
If you do agree , answer this one as well . what would Albie have seen were he to look at....say....Professor Foody (the fake moody)
Cant wait for the reply.....CHEERS !

Trisha
May 11th, 2005, 9:18 am
"Severus," said Dumbledore, turning to Snape, "you know what I must ask you to do. If you are ready... if you are prepared...."
"I am," said Snape.
He looked slightly paler than usual, and his cold, black eyes glittered strangely.
"Then good luck," said Dumbledore, and he watched, with a trace of apprehension on his face, as Snape swept wordlessly after Sirius.
It was several minutes before Dumbledore spoke again.
GofF, pg 713

On the face of it, it looks like Dumbledore is reluctantly sending Snape back into the snakepit. I'd agree with earlier posts that Dumbledore has equipped Snape with skills to escape detection. But I wonder -- does the headmaster really trust Snape? Or is it a case of "the best of several bad choices?"
Dumbledore is so nervous about the move, and waits until Snape can no longer hear before taking his leave of Harry.

And there is Snape's reaction. Maybe that wasn't fear in his eyes. Maybe that was anticipation.
Here's where he cuts his ties, one way or the other.

albie
May 11th, 2005, 9:33 am
you sTILL doubt severus' loyalties , trisha ? (sounds Indian , your name )
I thought PS/SS alone must have sealed the deal for him . If he fights Quirrell so vehemently , trying to guard the Stone , and Voldemort , too does nothing about it , or even approach him for help as he would were he known to be loyal to him , I think it's pretty clear that Severus might be Ugly , but he's certainly not Bad and in all probability , is ( u knew this was coming , eh ?) Good !!

Norbertha
May 11th, 2005, 9:46 am
Hermione also cries in PoA when the guys are mad at her because of the Firebolt (and she's starting to crack under the strain). We don't see her but Hagrid tells Harry she does.
And she cries in class once. It says she looks down as her eyes are filled with angry tears. Can't remember which class (I wish I had the books here!) but I think it's after the "do you take pride in being an insufferable know-it-all?" comment from Snape.

Forgot to thank Norbertha for starting the thread.. shame on me!
We can't survive without Norbertha!
:blush: :blush: you are too kind :blush: :blush:
Crying.. I wonder if and when we're going to see Snape crying. When's it going to finally be too much for him? He's going through quite a strain already..
That would be a strong image. It would make me cry for sure!
I wouldn't say Luna is not a fighter. I actually think it takes more strength to be accomodating than to react, so I would take Snape as the weaker of the two (maybe I should join IWBTBIGOIASSSS, except I never considered myself bullied).

Subtle and Severa, are you performing Legilimency on one another? :p

To me is seems that Luna knows that she is above those who steal her things. Luna seems scatty, but I think she is extremely intelligent (though superstitious .. I mean open minded ... :) ). I think the way she reacts to the Thestrals says a lot: Harry is very worried when he sees them for the first time. Luna, however, calmly tells him that she can see them too. And it doesn't scare her at all. She's not worried that she can see things others can't. Luna doesn't care about being like everybody else. She knows she's not like everybody else, and she is fine with that.

Severa, you can join the IWBTBIGOIASSSS as an honourary member! :tu:
I did read a fanfiction someplace (don't ask), wherein the author had an interesting take on this. I can't abide a suddenly weepy, Oprah/Dr. Phil confessional Snape (eeeww), but this writer made a believable case for how/why Snape might break.
Can you remember what this fic is called or who the author is? I would love to read it.Maybe it was all because he lost the Order of Merlin...but he never says so.
Dubledore explains Snape's anger in this scene by saying he has suffered a great disappointment. I don't think he's talking about the Order of Merlin either, but rather about the fact that Sirius escaped. We discussed earlier the question of when does Dumbledore learn that Sirius and James bullied Snape? I agreed with the ones who thought that he only found out the full extent of it after Snape stopped the Occlumency lessons. But this "suffered a great disappointment" comment makes me think he maybe knew at least some of it already. Or what do you think?
It's like, "FIRE! Pay attention."
It's fire that makes the Devil's Snare let go, too.

Trisha
May 11th, 2005, 11:21 am
Oh, albie, I just can't see Snivellus pulling off his Darth Vadar helmet and embracing the Force. He's just too good at being bad....

Can you see us going to version 3 of "Development of Umbridge's character?" Nah, she's another Petunia when it comes to depth.
But Snape is so ambiguous. He could go either way. But he's not a wimp, he's not conflicted about his shifting loyalties. He just wants to be on the winning team.
But don't expect warm fuzzies.

Oh, and the last name is German. So my husband says, and he has the genealogy to prove it.

Norbertha
May 11th, 2005, 11:40 am
Oh, and the last name is German. So my husband says, and he has the genealogy to prove it. Is Snape's last name German? But there is a place called Snape and a Snape Castle (http://www.communigate.co.uk/ne/slhg/page2.phtml)in Britain. I assumed that's where JKR got the name from, but I might be wrong.

Oh, oh, incoming thought alert:

If Snape's family is pure-blood, are they from Snape Castle? A la Malfoy Manor? Have they lived in this castle for centuries?

subtle science
May 11th, 2005, 12:18 pm
Welcome to more new posters!

Norbertha--No, I don't remember who wrote it or where. It was a while ago, and I have this tendency to wander the internet, randomly following links all over the place (it is exactly the same way I go through a library and pretty much the way I watch television, too!)...so who knows where I ended up....A pity, because it was an interesting and fairly well written premise: that Snape was being subjected to suspicion from Order members, such as Moody, as well as Voldemort; I think there was even the small detail that he was being criticized/suspected for being late to Order meetings, and Crucio'd by Voldemort for failing to respond promptly to his summons--the author just kept piling up the list of things (not unlike JKR tends to do, to several characters, with Snape and Harry being, to me, the primary victims), until Snape broke down. In front of most of the Order, and the Trio--and the author depicted Lupin as the one who responded. Interesting point of view. Anyway...

I think it's only logical that Legilimency does not require a wand or an incantation: there are numerous incidents throughout the books where not only Snape and Dumbledore simply deliver the stare and subsequently know information, but also Voldemort--PS/SS, for instance, when Quirrell is trying to get the Stone out of the Mirror, and Voldemort knows Harry is lying. In the Occlumency lessons, Snape uses both the wand and the incantation to perform the spell, to make it clear to Harry what he is doing; he allows Harry the use of a wand to aid him in learning Occlumency, even though, obviously, Snape doesn't use a wand to block Voldmeort's use of Legilimency on him. It's a training device.

I've just quoted this recently over in Decon, but I'll tack it on over here, too; yes, I think Dumbledore trusts Snape completely, as he says so himself in "The Lost Prophecy" chapter of OotP:

"I trust Severus Snape," said Dumbledore simply (p. 833, US hardcover).

Dumbledore's actually repeating himself. He's already said the same thing, only addressed to both Sirius and Snape, at the end of GoF:

"[Sirius] is here at my invitation," said Dumbledore, looking between them, "as are you, Severus. I trust you both. It is time for you to lay aside your old differences and trust each other" (p. 712).

If Dumbledore says these things, but he doesn't really trust Snape completely, then he's lying, deliberately misleading not only the characters in the books, but the readers as well. JKR has said that Dumbledore speaks for her, making that premise unlikely.

Although it's driving me crazy, what I love is that Dumbledore knows something about Snape that the audience is not yet privy to, and it's the reason he trusts Snape. Whatever it is, that information is too personal and private to be disclosed--but it's definitive:

"What made you think he'd really stopped supporting Voldemort, Professor?"
Dumbledore held Harry's gaze for a few seconds, and then said, "That, Harry, is a matter between Professor Snape and myself" (p. 604, GoF, US paper).

GoF is a great book for Snape's character: JKR baits the audience throughout. There's a tension throughout--all the doubts about Snape's character: Fake Moody; Karkaroff, both in the present and the Pensieve trial; Sirius; Harry and Ron; even Snape's own hostility toward Harry's participation in the Triwizard and his threat to use Veritaserum, his cruelty toward Hermione...and then there's the end of the book. It actually begins with the above quote. The ultimate authority in the books begins it with his declaration of trust in Snape, and then proceeds to prove it.

The proof of Dumbledore's trust in Snape comes when Snape is one of the three to burst into Moody's office to rescue Harry. Quite literally, Snape is put on an equal footing with Dumbledore and McGonagall; when Dumbledore starts issuing orders, they are also equally divided between Snape and McGonagall, who have exactly the same reaction--instant, unquestioning obedience.

Dumbledore reconfirms the trust when he tells Sirius and Snape to shake hands. Now he equates Sirius and Snape: he trusts both of them. Sirus is also a character over whom a cloud hangs--most of the wizarding world believes him to be an escaped murderer. However, this time the audience is privy to the truth--we know he's a framed, innocent man and is completely trustworthy. So--if one continues to mistrust Snape at this point, then one must, with no basis whatsoever, extend that to Sirius as well (as well as disregard Dumbledore's judgment). A highly entertaining subtext to this scene is that the two objects of suspicion, bull headed as they are, can't erase their mutual distrust--JKR's sly poke at the readers who can't accept Dumbledore's estimation of the two characters, either? : )

In the meantime, Snape has established his own absolute allegiance to and trust in Dumbledore, by confronting Fudge with the Dark Mark. There is no reason for Snape to do this; there's no benefit to him whatsoever to reveal, before a very large audience that not only includes the Minister of Magic but also his own students, that he was a Death Eater--he removes all doubt (think of Harry's reaction to the Pensieve trials and his conversation with Sirius about whether or not Snape was a DE). Snape put his own life on the line: he risked his job (they didn't want a werewolf teaching at the school--now Fudge finds out there's a DE on staff?!), but he also could've been punching his own ticket to Azkaban. But Snape does it, because Dumbledore's veracity and authority were being questioned--another bit of irony from JKR.

When Dumbledore sends Snape off at the end of GoF, I don't think, after all this, that he's worried because Snape is untrustworthy. Rather, he's concerned about what he's doing to Snape:

"Severus," said Dumbledore, turning to Snape, "you know what I must ask you to do. If you are ready...if you are prepared..."
"I am," said Snape.
He looked slightly paler than usual, and his cold, black eyes glittered strangely.
"Then good luck," said Dumbledore, and he watched, with a trace of apprehension on his face, as Snape swept wordlessly after Sirius.
It was several minutes before Dumbledore spoke again (p. 713).

Dumbledore doesn't fear what Snape will do; he knows that--Snape will re-join the DEs and make contact with Voldemort, pretending to be yet another faithful DE who was the slowest of all to respond to Voldemort's summons and who did not search for his master during the previous 13 years; Snape will resume his role as spy for the Order--if he survives this first meeting.

What Dumbledore is apprehensive about is whether or not Snape will survive. He is asking Snape to risk his life; he asks if Snape is prepared and ready to risk it, and if he is prepared and ready to experience Cruciatus (the audience knows this is going to happen: we saw Voldemort's punishment of his DEs in the graveyard scene), and if he is prepared and ready to prove he is, quite possibly, the best Occlumens in the wizarding world...because, if he isn't the best, he will be dead very shortly.

It's all quite stoic and stiff-upper-lip. Much is left unsaid; as usual in the books, that can be as significant as what is said: note that Dumbledore is silent--not just for a moment, but for several minutes.

The "glittering" indicates that Snape is not quite so stoic as he might appear. It's emotion, of whatever kind--it could very well be anticipation that he feels...however, I doubt it would be a happy anticipation: not with the accompanying paler-than-usual face--that's not a typical indication of positive emotion. And it doesn't seem logical or likely that Snape will be welcomed back without being made to suffer consequences--again, assuming that he will be believed at all and permitted to live.

OotP quickly proves that Snape was successful: he's alive, to make the report to the Order. The red-herring tension of is he/isn't he continues in the book, however; Sirius, Ron, and Harry (as opposed to Hermione, Lupin, and Dumbledore) persist in trying to convince the audience that Snape cannot be trusted--with the added "evidence" that now Snape is in contact with Voldemort and the DEs, so maybe he has really gone back to them entirely. Yet this is the book wherein Dumbledore declares his allegiance to Snape--by entrusting Snape with Harry's mind, through the Occlumency lessons. Again, Dumbledore asks Snape to do something incredibly dangerous--something that was too dangerous for Dumbledore to do himself:

"I have already said that it was a mistake for me not to teach you myself, though I was sure, at the time, that nothing could have been more dangerous than to open your mind even further to Voldemort while in my presence--" (p. 833, OotP, US hardcover).

Throughout the book, Harry and Ron blame Snape for the sensation that Harry's mind is being exposed to Voldemort, when, in fact, it's not Snape's fault--or diabolical plan--at all, but rather the side effect of Occlumency/Legilimency [we've seen the effect before--pointed out earlier on this thread, in the opening of GoF, when both Snape and Dumbledore appear to have performed silent Legilimency on Harry, to see if he is lying about entering the Triwizard: "The inside of his head seemed to be in complete disarray, as though his brain has been ransacked (p. 282)]. Furthermore, Snape agreed to teach these lessons, despite the great persoanl risk--if it was dangerous for Dumbledore, it was equally dangerous for the spy to be doing this. Yet, Snape took on the task because Dumbledore requested it.

And the book ends with Dumbledore's simple declaration of trust, reaffirming the point yet one more time. If, after all this, he's wrong...well, let's just say that the internal structure of the first five books completely collapses.

James Macca
May 11th, 2005, 3:28 pm
haha.. i hate making posts where i just say i agree.. but after that, and considering i dont hasve my copy on hand.. or even on the premesis at the moment i really have nothing to add..
but i honestly see no way that anyone could think that snape is a baddy.. i mean, he may have been pretty badcore at one stage in his life, but u know.. theres a reason that JK says Lupin was the most 'reasonable' of the marauders.. its probably to strengthen his opinion about these types of things.. him coupled with DD and Hermy.. theyre like the wise trio if u will..
i ean as much as i love them, and dont get me wrong, sirius was my favourite character, we all know they tend to make rash decision, that is ron harry and big S.. they tend to be a little more stubborn and a lot less rational then the other three.. so im inclined to believe the trio of rationality when on the subject of snape..

i applaud ur efforts and agree with everything u said SS.. haha

The Black Adder
May 11th, 2005, 5:54 pm
I have to ditto James Macca. A beautiful piece of analysis, Subtle!


In the meantime, Snape has established his own absolute allegiance to and trust in Dumbledore, by confronting Fudge with the Dark Mark. There is no reason for Snape to do this; there's no benefit to him whatsoever to reveal, before a very large audience that not only includes the Minister of Magic but also his own students, that he was a Death Eater--he removes all doubt (think of Harry's reaction to the Pensieve trials and his conversation with Sirius about whether or not Snape was a DE). Snape put his own life on the line: he risked his job (they didn't want a werewolf teaching at the school--now Fudge finds out there's a DE on staff?!), but he also could've been punching his own ticket to Azkaban. But Snape does it, because Dumbledore's veracity and authority were being questioned--another bit of irony from JKR.

Boldface added. Reading this last, I was reminded of the earlier moment in GoF when Harry's name has just come out of the Goblet and the officials are all meeting with the champions to try to make sense of it. Snape comes to DD's defense there as well when the headmaster's veracity and authority were being questioned.

Tonksaholic
May 11th, 2005, 6:00 pm
Okay--curiosity: What's the pathetic fallacy in the books?
Pathetic Fallacy is where the weather or description of scenery represent or predict the evnets and actions of the characters. And i believe Silver Ink Pot said that Snape could become very emotional later because of the drought at the start of OotP, the lack of water means that eventually stuff will eventually burst in to flame, or snape will suddenly become very fiery and emotional.

Potions Mistres
May 11th, 2005, 10:19 pm
Neat! New(er) thread. I must say, excellent analysis of Snape's character. I know I could do no better. Please forgive if this has been discussed ad nauseum on the previous thread, but what I found interesting in SWM was the fact that he wasn't exactly wrong about the Marauders. Harry had been defending his father's memory for years, chalking up Snape's comments to jealousy. But when Harry saw SWM, he saw that indeed, at some point in their lives, the Marauder's (esp. James and Sirius) were complete jerks. Granted, Snape doesn't come up smelling exactly like roses in this memory either. But this leads me to the point I'm trying to make: JKR's characters (or the main ones, anyway) are not flat and one-dimensional. There are shades of gray. James was a hero, even if he was a complete git as a young man. Snape, I believe, is on the side of Good, even if he is not all that good himself. To paraphrase Sirius (I think it was Sirius and I'm too lazy to go look it up at the moment), not all evil wizards are DE's (look at Umbridge). I think you can extend that to Snape's character. He will never be warm and fuzzy (because then, he wouldn't be Snape), but he is no Wormtail, waiting to see which side wins before choosing. He can be trusted, but that doesn't mean he is going to be more like Remus or Dumbledore. I hope this makes sense.

Tonksaholic
May 11th, 2005, 10:26 pm
I completely agree, JKR doesn't make her charcaters one-dimensional.

A rubbishy post, but Potions Mistres you were able to put my thoughts into writing where i couldn'y.

Potions Mistres
May 11th, 2005, 10:39 pm
Thanks, Tonksaholic! I do wonder if Snape found some private satisfaction now that Harry has seen his dad in the way Snape has always seen James (even if he did so by breaking into SWM). Yes, to the reader it demonstrates that people are mulit-dimensional, but Snape sees James very one-dimensionally. Is Snape going, "See, I told you so," in his usual, Snape-ish way?

silver ink pot
May 11th, 2005, 10:44 pm
Pathetic Fallacy is where the weather or description of scenery represent or predict the evnets and actions of the characters. And i believe Silver Ink Pot said that Snape could become very emotional later because of the drought at the start of OotP, the lack of water means that eventually stuff will eventually burst in to flame, or snape will suddenly become very fiery and emotional.

:huh: I certainly don't recall putting my thoughts together in quite that way. And I certainly didn't use the term "pathetic fallacy" to describe the drought I was thinking might happen in Book 6, but it is sort of an interesting idea. :tu:

Boldface added. Reading this last, I was reminded of the earlier moment in GoF when Harry's name has just come out of the Goblet and the officials are all meeting with the champions to try to make sense of it. Snape comes to DD's defense there as well when the headmaster's veracity and authority were being questioned.

Hi, Black Adder! Great point - that is where Snape tells Karkaroff not to blame Dumbledore because Potter's been crossing lines since he got here. That is a perfect example of Snape acting as Harry's "Super ego" as in your excellent essay.

Tonksaholic
May 11th, 2005, 10:51 pm
I certainly don't recall putting my thoughts together in quite that way. And I certainly didn't use the term "pathetic fallacy" to describe the drought I was thinking might happen in Book 6, but it is sort of an interesting idea.
I know you didnt use that term but i thought that was what you were trying to get at. All those years dossing around in english lessons but i still remember outlandish terms like "pathetic fallacy". :p

silver ink pot
May 11th, 2005, 11:07 pm
Tonksaholic: I learned them all, too. And I've forgotten most of them, lol, which my professors in college would be unhappy about, since they spent so much time lecturing on stuff like that, lol.;)

Mcpherson
May 11th, 2005, 11:11 pm
I like all this talk about fire, and would like to add something, maybe not so relevant, but I'll tell it anyway, just in case.

I wrote an editorial on Dumbledore, specifically about his eye colour and first name and had to dig deep to find more than just a well-known set of meanings of colours, and not only the symbolism of blue. I found an interesting meaning of connection of blue (the Headmaster) and red (Voldemort)--it is commonly supposed for Christians to symbolise the end of our world, specifically the Judgement Day. The blue colour represents in this allegory the great flood, and red the destructive power of fire. Dumbledore used water to imprison You-Know-Who during their duel. I wrote in the editorial that we might see more of fire and destruction caused by it thanks to Voldemort, since fire is the main theme of the cover of British children's version of HBP. Maybe fire after all will be important in the next two books even though, as SIP pointed out, it might serve a different purpose than causing mayhem, as I thought?

Oh, and please don't interpret this post as an advert of my editorial--I wrote here about it to show you that I've really been thinking about this for dome time and checked many sources for verification.

In PS/SS, Snape doesn't know Harry is there--that's the film version: that choice seems to be part of the film's building up to the revealing of Snape's Legilimency/Occlumency ability.

I saw PS/SS again a couple of days ago, but it was the first time, I think, when I knew that Severus is a Legillimens thanks to OotP and was astonished how well this theme had been interwoven into the plot--at the great feast at the beginning of the school year, Harry looks at Snape and instantly the boy's head bursts with pain. Obviously, Harry interpreted it as a sign of connection between Snape and Voldemort. However, there's Quirell sitting right next to Severus and he, not the Potions Master, causes the pain. Snape seems to understand this immediately, as the moment he sees Harry scratching his scar (and probably the boy's thoughts as well), he looks at Quirell as if he suddenly realised something. I guess this was also an example of Legillimency--not a very deep case of 'mind reading', as all that was needed to know was Harry's feelings at the moment.

Interestingly enough, in all of his cat fights with Harry, he has yet to throw in Harry's face the fact that he has saved the wretched boy's neck a number of times without a scrap of gratitude forthcoming. It's in the same category as Snape's never mentioning Lily--what he doesn't say becomes significant. Harry's lack of gratitude and continuing failure to acknowledge what Snape has done for him would seem to be a perfect topic for a patented Snape rant about Harry's characters flaws. If Snape were really so eager for public recognition.

I think this shows to what extent can Snape control his emotions--even when agitated, he still has some kind of 'standby mode' that he uses in such situations in order not to do or say something foolish enough to cause real problems. Also I have always assumed, but not necessarily rightly, that Severus enjoys these arguments -- even when he seems to loose control over his feelings, Snape probably still knows he is superior and knows better. Awww, 'knows better' sounds as if he was an unsympathetic know-it-all, but I meant it differently -- Severus actually knows better, as he has the full knowledge of the issues over which Harry and the Potions Master argue.

The "glittering" indicates that Snape is not quite so stoic as he might appear. It's emotion, of whatever kind--it could very well be anticipation that he feels...however, I doubt it would be a happy anticipation: not with the accompanying paler-than-usual face--that's not a typical indication of positive emotion. And it doesn't seem logical or likely that Snape will be welcomed back without being made to suffer consequences--again, assuming that he will be believed at all and permitted to live.

The 'glittering' isn't the only indicator of Snape's feelings in the scene--after all, his eyes, as has been discused here before, are described as 'glittering' on more, more casual occasions. What seems to draw attention more is the word 'strangely' used before 'glittering'. Why Severus's eyes are glittering 'strangely'? Because we see everything through Harry's eyes, through Harry's filter of emotions and through his overall knowledge of the world and people. As there is something 'strange' in Snape's eyes, the emotions hidden underneath must be of a sort that Harry hasn't known yet. If it was anticipation that Severus showed, Harry would understand it as he knows how the Potions Master shows this feeling. But as it was something completely unknown to Harry, we get only the 'strangely' description. I would bet that it indicates fear or at least apprehension, since these two emotions Harry would never expect in Snape. The boy's one dimensional understanding of the Professor simply doesn't allow such a possibility since Severus is the one who is feared. Thus, he cannot possibly fear anything himself, he's the living proof of evil for Harry.

subtle science
May 11th, 2005, 11:19 pm
"It's no one's fault but Potter's, Karkaroff," said Snape softly. His black eyes were alight with malice. "Don't go blaming Dumbeldore for Potter's determination to break rules. He has been crossing lines ever since he arrive here--"
"Thank you, Severus," said Dumbledore firmly, and Snape went quiet, though his eyes still glinted malevolently through his curtain of greasy black hair (p. 276, US paper).

At some point, we had a discussion of this. I'm still not entirely sure that Snape isn't a bit peeved with Dumbledore--PoA fallout. Of course, he does have to maintain the disgruntled employee act, since he's got the audience of Karkaroff the DE to mislead. But, just as the last time we dealt with this scene, I just can't decide how much of this is Snape's defending Dumbledore, but making it sound as though it's with great reservation, and how much might be a genuine bit of temper.

How's that for wishy-washy?

After Harry witnesses SWM, Snape does say, "Amusing man, your father, wasn't he?" as he shakes Harry (p. 649, US hardcover). However, I don't think there's any satisfaction whatsoever here--even though Harry has seen his father behaving atrociously, Snape doesn't know that Harry actually feels for him; Snape thinks Harry is just like James and will have found this memory amusing. I don't think Snape feels any sense of "I told you so," since that would necessitate his realizing Harry's dismay over his father's behavior. In fact, Snape orders Harry, "You will not repeat what you saw to anybody!" (p. 649). Clearly, the only thing that would be worse than the memory itself, for Snape, would be Harry's spreading the word about it--that trumps any possibility of satisfaction that Harry saw his father in the worst light. Add to that the fact that Snape stored that memory in the Pensieve: it was something he absolutely wanted there to be no chance that Harry would access it during the lessons, if Harry managed to break into Snape's mind.

Tonksaholic
May 11th, 2005, 11:25 pm
Mcpherson i read that essay, i found it very good :tu:

Add to that the fact that Snape stored that memory in the Pensieve: it was something he absolutely wanted there to be no chance that Harry would access it during the lessons, if Harry managed to break into Snape's mind.

But he then left the room quite blatantly leaving the pensieve available to Harry. Was this just absentmindedness or was it deliberate to prove to Harry that James wasn't some kind of perfect boy.

On an aside...if James wasn't a prefect(as learned in OotP) how did he become Head Boy (Hagrid mentions it in PS/SS)??

subtle science
May 11th, 2005, 11:52 pm
Mcpherson--I think you're exactly right about the "strangely"; it's not uncommon for Harry to find Snape's expression unreadable...because he doesn't credit Snape with being a human being with a range of human emotion.

As for Snape's leaving the Pensieve out--no, I don't think it was a deliberate set up. The memory is too humiliating and Snape's reaction is far too violent for his having at all wanted Harry to see that. He'd left Harry alone with it before and nothing happened. I've said before that I see the most logical explanation to be that Snape never considered Harry would so violate his privacy--especially by going through something on his desk, which is decidedly Snape's 'territory.' Similarly, Filch did not leave the Kwikspell letter on his desk so that he could trap Harry into looking at it. Neither considered that Harry would do something so unbelievably rude.

Alandra
May 11th, 2005, 11:58 pm
At some point, we had a discussion of this. I'm still not entirely sure that Snape isn't a bit peeved with Dumbledore--PoA fallout. Of course, he does have to maintain the disgruntled employee act, since he's got the audience of Karkaroff the DE to mislead. But, just as the last time we dealt with this scene, I just can't decide how much of this is Snape's defending Dumbledore, but making it sound as though it's with great reservation, and how much might be a genuine bit of temper.

Right, I'd say Snape just wanted to insult Harry - no more, no less. His defending Dumbledore possibly did have some sort of loyalty involved - whatever else Snape feels, I think he respects Dumbledore, and the fact that Karkaroff was indicating that Dumbledore was cheating probably offended him.

He obviously hates Harry, and has taken every oppertunity to insult him where possible, and preferably go the whole hog and try to get him expelled. I'd say he viewed the whole episode as another of Harry's attempts to get glory and to break rules.

As for the anger - I don't think Snape's the type to get angry so easily - that would be too emotional for him. He probably thinks Karkaroff is going too far by insulting Dumbledore, but would that be enough to make him angry?

After Harry witnesses SWM, Snape does say, "Amusing man, your father, wasn't he?" as he shakes Harry (p. 649, US hardcover). However, I don't think there's any satisfaction whatsoever here

Satisfaction? I took that as him covering up his anger with his usual sarcasm, as a defence against letting Harry know how angry he was about the situation and how touchy that memory was.

even though Harry has seen his father behaving atrociously, Snape doesn't know that Harry actually feels for him; Snape thinks Harry is just like James and will have found this memory amusing.

That's true, Snape (like Sirius, strangely) sees Harry as being his father - he doesn't believe that Harry can feel sympathy for him. My guess (I'm no psychology expert, mind) is that he is so accustomed to having no one to side with him that he closes up and can't actually see when someone empathises with him. He's used to acting hostilely (sp? Is it even a word?) to anyone who knows anything that can be used against him, such as this painful memory, because he is so used to being hurt. So knowing that Harry knows something that personal just makes him instinctively protect himself through being angry. He assumes the worst - that Harry will just taunt him about it like James would have done.

I don't think Snape feels any sense of "I told you so," since that would necessitate his realizing Harry's dismay over his father's behavior. In fact, Snape orders Harry, "You will not repeat what you saw to anybody!" (p. 649).

I really doubt Snape got any satisfaction in his enemy knowing a personal memory of his that was both painful and embarassing. That has to be worse than any pleasure he'd get out of Harry being proved wrong about the wonderful James. When he said James was arrogant, I doubt he wanted to prove it to Harry enough for him to see the memory - to him, it's like James is back again, and that Harry will just act as his father did. After being so protective about the memory, I doubt the minor truimph would weigh against the anger, embarassment and hurt he felt when Harry saw it.

Clearly, the only thing that would be worse than the memory itself, for Snape, would be Harry's spreading the word about it--that trumps any possibility of satisfaction that Harry saw his father in the worst light. Add to that the fact that Snape stored that memory in the Pensieve: it was something he absolutely wanted there to be no chance that Harry would access it during the lessons, if Harry managed to break into Snape's mind.

Yes, it was something he wanted to keep well clear of Harry. Strange, though, that he'd just forget about it and leave Harry alone, though - that's very out-of-character for him to be so careless, especially if the memory really was that important.


Well, that was my longest ever post, and probably made no sense whatsoever. Please be nice, though!

RemusLupinFan
May 12th, 2005, 2:25 am
Yay, new thread. :)
After Harry witnesses SWM, Snape does say, "Amusing man, your father, wasn't he?" as he shakes Harry (p. 649, US hardcover). However, I don't think there's any satisfaction whatsoever here--even though Harry has seen his father behaving atrociously, Snape doesn't know that Harry actually feels for him; Snape thinks Harry is just like James and will have found this memory amusing. I don't think Snape feels any sense of "I told you so," since that would necessitate his realizing Harry's dismay over his father's behavior.I agree, Snape is not gloating here that Harry has just seen the exact opposite to what he expected his father to be like. I think Snape's comment was heavily sarcastic and indicating that "amusing" was the absolute last thing that James was. I also agree that Snape has no reason to think that Harry would feel sorry for him. Since Harry has sided with his father every time until now, I don't think Snape would expect him not to side with him this time. Though I'm not sure Harry really got a chance to fully let the scene sink into his mind, but we learn later on that he most definitely felt simpathy for Snape.

In fact, Snape orders Harry, "You will not repeat what you saw to anybody!" (p. 649). Clearly, the only thing that would be worse than the memory itself, for Snape, would be Harry's spreading the word about it--that trumps any possibility of satisfaction that Harry saw his father in the worst light. Add to that the fact that Snape stored that memory in the Pensieve: it was something he absolutely wanted there to be no chance that Harry would access it during the lessons, if Harry managed to break into Snape's mind.I agree, this shows the extent that this memory bothered Snape. In fact, I think it is central in the reasons why Snape hates the Marauders. I've often seen this scene to be a snapshot of the very worst that the Marauders behaved toward Snape- a time when they went all out and humiliated Snape to a great extent. Therefore, I believe that this memory was likely the source of much of Snape's hatred and anger for the Marauders, particularly James. It also makes a lot of sense that this memory was very damaging to Snape and Snape's reputation, as indicated by the fact that he doesn't want anyone to know about what happened. It's true that he could have had a chance to show people how horrible James really was to him, but this would mean exposing the humiliation he endured. I certainly don't blame him, but his reaction to this memory is further indication that he has never forgiven the Marauders for what they did, and he cannot move past it. As you said subtle, it is much more important for Snape to keep this incident under wraps than to make it public as a demonstration to show how terrible James was to him. Snape's pride likely factors into this as well, for which I don't blame him either. I know that if I were in his shoes, I would never want that memory shown to others, even if it proved how terrible the bully was- the spectacle is simply too humiliating.

subtle science
May 12th, 2005, 7:34 am
RemusLupinFan--Welcome back from finals!

The speculation that I attach to Snape's reaction (by the way, Alandra, my use of the word 'satisfaction' came from a previous post by someone else) to Harry's viewing of SWM goes back to a previous discussion: Snape had to have been teaching students who either witnessed or had heard of SWM, in his first year of teaching. It seems likely that experience only adds fuel to Snape's fury when he discovers what Harry has done--a potential rerun looms if Harry decides to spread the word.

I agree that, at the time, Harry hasn't fully absorbed what he's witnessed, although he's seen enough to begin to react. His first response is "a thrill of horror" when he realizes adult Snape is there (p. 649, US hardcover)--that inidcates he does already feel guilt for violating Snape's privacy, plus he knows immediately how angry Snape is. I think, in fact, that it's Snape's reference to Harry's father that helps to get Harry to develop the sympathy--Harry, to react to Snape's "amusing man" has to think about what he just saw. In another two lines, he's out of the room and already appalled at James' behavior. That he develops such feelings so quickly says something about Harry's character--it's too bad that he couldn't express them to Snape...missed opportunity....

Alandra--I think there's no doubt that Snape respects Dumbledore. He does disagree with Dumbledore, but he invariably gives way to Dumbledore's wishes...the only exception being when he outs Lupin. Even the fact that Snape will disagree shows respect: he doesn't view Dumbledore as someone who's going to hold his forgiveness of Snape over Snape's head--in other words, that Snape can't disagree because he owes Dumbledore one (or a hundred).

Snape is also very prone to being angry--it's his favorite, all-purpose emotion. In fact, the question becomes: when he's angry, is that actually the emotion he's feeling, or does he obscure other emotions behind the cover of anger? (Rather as he often uses the long hair as a "curtain" throughout the books--that was another detail I noticed when I went hunting for the descriptions of his eyes and mouth....).

clkginny
May 12th, 2005, 7:44 am
*sigh*

Sometimes I feel like the only posts I make on here are "those were really good posts" and "I agree."

So, those were really good posts, everybody, and I agree with all of it.

subtle science
May 12th, 2005, 7:50 am
Aw, c'mon, clkginny--you could always add conversational gambits like, "Snape deserved SWM" or "Harry doesn't have to apologize because Snape is mean." : ) !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

vickilind
May 12th, 2005, 8:11 am
Orginally posted by Tonksaholic:
On an aside...if James wasn't a prefect(as learned in OotP) how did he become Head Boy (Hagrid mentions it in PS/SS)??

Tonks, this was discussed earlier in this thread, but I think (I hope) I can summarize:
There are 2 prefects from each house from years 5, 6 & 7. The choice for headboy/girl can come from the prefects, but doesn't have to. If one of them came from the prefect pool, another prefect would be chosen to replace the one lost to head status.
We know that James grew and matured a lot after year 5, enough to be named Headboy. I like to think Remus remained prefect, but that is my wishful thinking.

And hey, SS, Snape did deserve the scene in SWM! So there. :p
Just thought I'd throw some wood on the fire.

winky22
May 12th, 2005, 8:57 am
I don't think Snape deserved SWM, well i dunno really what we saw is just the Marauders being horrid to him we haven't actully seen him being horrid to them, which i'm sure he did. I've actully got a soft spot for Snape, well and Alan Rickman! I think he will stay good and help Dumbledore, if he is still a spy for Voldie he must be a very brave person, don't you think?

Tonksaholic
May 12th, 2005, 12:08 pm
Thanks vickilind. I hadn't noticed it being mentioned in this topic earlier.

That he develops such feelings so quickly says something about Harry's character--it's too bad that he couldn't express them to Snape...missed opportunity....

Are you trying to suggest Harry could have become friends with Snape because he is disgusted by James's behaviour? I agree it may have abated Snape's anger, but doesn't Harry feel better about James when he speaks to Sirius and Lupin in the fire, thus negating any need to be friendly with Snape. Something none of us wishes to happen.

Norbertha
May 12th, 2005, 12:26 pm
Are you trying to suggest Harry could have become friends with Snape because he is disgusted by James's behaviour? I agree it may have abated Snape's anger, but doesn't Harry feel better about James when he speaks to Sirius and Lupin in the fire, thus negating any need to be friendly with Snape. Something none of us wishes to happen.

I wish that to happen. :) I mean, I don't wish Harry and Snape to be best friends, and the novels to be all sappy! :lol: But I wish they could stop hating one another, and see that they work for the same side.

Winky: I don't think Vickilind meant it seriously. :) I totally agree with you that Snape didn't deserve SWM. Nobody deserves that kind of treatment.

subtle science
May 12th, 2005, 12:38 pm
Actually, it would rather be to Harry's benefit if he could get on a better footing with Snape, who's one of his strongest allies--if the two could seetle their differences. Although that's quite a bit different from saying they need to be friends.

Sirius and Lupin don't reassure Harry at all when he speaks to them in the fire. He is still quite troubled, and their...well...excuses...don't really help. When Lupin points out that James was only 15, Harry retorts, "I'm fifteen!" (p. 670, US hardcover). When Harry speaks, his voice and manner reflect his troubles: "with a slightly apologetic note in his voice"; "in a pained voice"; "watching uncomprehendingly as Sirius and Lupin beamed reminiscently"; "doggedly, determined to say everything that was on his mind now he was here"; "miserably"; "still looking unconvinced"; "heavily" (pp. 670-671). The conversation is interrupted then, and the events in the book start to accelerate; Harry is distracted by the story of Grawp, his exams, and his continuing dreams--and then he ends up at the Ministry. No other reflection is done about his father and Sirius.

Neither Snape nor Harry sees the other for what he really is; their mutual hostility is an obstacle that needs to be overcome. Proof of that is given at the end of OotP, in fact, when Harry doesn't even consider Snape: he completely overlooks that he still does have a member of the Order available at the school to help him. But Harry has not, throughout the books, ever acknowledged that Snape helps him; that fact never makes its way through Harry's resentment of Snape's classroom treatment of him. Harry, instead, classifies Snape as the enemy, always suspecting him despite evidence to the contrary (including Dumbeldore's endorsement).

Occlumency seemed the opportune moment for the two of them to realize the truth about each other--after all, they were going to be looking directly into each other's mind! But JKR manipulates it so that the expected doesn't work out. Harry, throughout the lessons, manages to convince himself that Snape is working for Voldemort and his hatred and suspicion only increase. When those attitudes are shaken by SWM, the ironic twist is that now Snape has his worst interpretations of Harry's character 'confirmed' by the fact that Harry violated his privacy--all Snape ever thought about Harry's disregard for rules, his arrogance, and his rudeness was reaffirmed. OotP seems to end with the gulf between the two as wide as--if not wider--than ever. Hence--lost opportunity.

PS--winky22: vickilind was joining in on a joke that started earlier with clkginny; we were all just fooling around : ) .

Tonksaholic
May 12th, 2005, 2:30 pm
Sirius and Lupin don't reassure Harry at all when he speaks to them in the fire. He is still quite troubled, and their...well...excuses...don't really help.
Its been a while since i read OotP, but i thought that Harry had been reassured. (This has now prompted me to begin rereading it).

OotP seems to end with the gulf between the two as wide as--if not wider--than ever.

It will be quite interesting to see how they treat each other in HBP when Harry takes NEWT Potions. (I assume that he does because of the UK Adult Edition Cover)

PotionStudent
May 12th, 2005, 3:58 pm
It will be quite interesting to see how they treat each other in HBP when Harry takes NEWT Potions. (I assume that he does because of the UK Adult Edition Cover)

Besides, what would be a HP book without our Harry / Snape banter? :rotfl:

Seriously, Harry and Snape, friends? I seem more probability of the last scene of book 7 being a flash-forward to Voldermort baby-sitting benignly Harry and Ginny's firstborn :p
But Harry diving recklessly into the pensive enforced in Snape the stereotype that Harry was "just a James bis", and Harry did not / could not express to Snape how sick he felt at his father's behavior. Honestly, seeing how angry our Snape was, who would have had the guts to stay and say "woopsie sorry I was wrong and you were right"? Not me! I'd have fled the scene as quick as a rabbit, snape fan though I am.

severa78
May 12th, 2005, 4:02 pm
Severa, you can join the IWBTBIGOIASSSS as an honourary member!Thanks! I will. :blush:

RLFan, congrats on your finals!

As for Snape defending DD in the beginning of GoF:
Notice Snape defends DD from Karkaroff's accusations and then McGonagall defends DD from Maxime's accusations of DD having made a mistake with the Age Line.
I don't have the quotes to give you, but when I read that scene it always looks pretty theatrical to me, with a nice simmetry in the short lines pronounced (I do hope it's in the movie).

My point is Snape helps DD as much as Minerva, even if he might have been sour about what happened the previous year.

Subtle, I like your idea on "the curtain of hair". promise you'll post those quotes one day..
And yeah, Snape deserved SWM (;))

atschpe
May 12th, 2005, 4:19 pm
It will be quite interesting to see how they treat each other in HBP when Harry takes NEWT Potions. (I assume that he does because of the UK Adult Edition Cover)


Tell me if I'm wrong, but I thought that the NEWTs were taken at the end of the seventh year. The potion book on the UK Adult Edition Cover does point out that Harry will be continuing in potions, which means he must have passed to Snape's content (or do you think Dumbledore or McGonagall would talk him into taking on Harry although his skills aren't up to standards? Possible, but I think rather unlikely).
At least, having Harry continuing classes under the supervision of Snape will give us a good insight to the course of their relationship. It would be weird if Harry wouldn't continue, as this would take away the possibilities of seeing them in one room. Naturally, JKR could find enough way to accomplish this otherwise, but it would seem rather unnatural…

RemusLupinFan
May 12th, 2005, 4:58 pm
Occlumency seemed the opportune moment for the two of them to realize the truth about each other--after all, they were going to be looking directly into each other's mind! But JKR manipulates it so that the expected doesn't work out. Harry, throughout the lessons, manages to convince himself that Snape is working for Voldemort and his hatred and suspicion only increase. When those attitudes are shaken by SWM, the ironic twist is that now Snape has his worst interpretations of Harry's character 'confirmed' by the fact that Harry violated his privacy--all Snape ever thought about Harry's disregard for rules, his arrogance, and his rudeness was reaffirmed. OotP seems to end with the gulf between the two as wide as--if not wider--than ever. Hence--lost opportunity.I agree, it seems as if the Occlumency lessons should leave no room for misinterpretation, but as you pointed out, that's exactly what happens. It seems like instead of learning the truth about the other, Harry and Snape reaffirm their somewhat mistaken images of each other. Though I have to say that Harry does learn something valuable about Snape- namely that he was right all along about James, and that he was in a position similar to himself on many occasions (ie Harry has to endure Draco in much the same way Snape had to endure James and Sirius in particular). So I think the sympathy Harry feels for Snape was kindled by a) the fact that their experiences were somewhat similar, b) the comment Snape makes about James being amusing, c) perhaps by seeing Snape so completely and utterly enraged over what Harry had seen, and d) possibly in the beginning he felt guilty that he invaded Snape's private memories, since I believe he did try to apologize to Snape.

clkginny
May 12th, 2005, 5:01 pm
They are called NEWT-level classes. So, if he is continuing in potions, it will be NEWT potions.

We were discussing the value of a Devil's Advocate on Decon (this subject is close to my heart, hehe), and the fact that Snape plays this role for Hogwarts. SIP wrote a beautiful post on the idea, including links, and hopefully she'll bring it over here.

However, I think it is an important idea, given that Snape will often espouse a different opinion than Dumbledore, even if he gives over to Dumbledore's opinion. Like a critical evaluator, Snape makes Dumbledore consider what his opinion is, make sure that what Snape gives as an alternate reason isn't logical/reasonable, before continuing on. At least, most times he has a logical alternative, although there are times I think he merely wants to get a dig in on Harry.

ETA: RLFan, I just saw your post. It made me think that perhaps part of the problem with Snape and Harry, is that many of the Draco/Harry confrontations have been walked in on at a point in which it appears that Harry is the agressor. Perhaps part of Snape's opinion that Harry is just like his father is that from Snape's POV, Harry is bullying Draco. Anyway, just a thought, I haven't had time to consider it thoroughly yet.

subtle science
May 12th, 2005, 5:28 pm
I think silver ink pot or Chievrefueil...or both...have ripped apart the scenes between Harry and Draco and discovered that, yes, Snape never gets to see the start of the conflicts--only the middle or end. Since Snape already believes Harry to be an arrogant little git, no question how he interprets what he sees.

Even if 90% of Snape's disagreements with Dumbledore may be to get in digs at Harry--even that has its plaace, as Dumbledore admits at the end of OotP that, in a manner of speaking, he's too fond of Harry. Snape's snarkiness can serve as a reminder to Dumbledore that Harry cannot be granted favoratism....

I've said before that I don't think we've heard the last of Occlumency, the Pensieve dive, and SWM. I think the fallout from that is yet to come. And, despite the attitudes that closed OotP, I lean toward the idea that Harry and Snape will absorb the facts of what they each saw and get a better, truer understanding of each other. I also feel that Harry really did want to apologize; he just never got around to it. Nevertheless, I don't think--no matter what overwrought claims he makes at the end of OotP--that those feelings are just going to vanish.....

silver ink pot
May 12th, 2005, 5:56 pm
We were discussing the value of a Devil's Advocate on Decon (this subject is close to my heart, hehe), and the fact that Snape plays this role for Hogwarts. SIP wrote a beautiful post on the idea, including links, and hopefully she'll bring it over here.

Wow, thank you! :blush: Severa also asked that I post it here, so here it is, modified a little bit to explain Groupthink better. I have to give credit to Norbertha for bringing up this topic, which explains so many things so well. :tu: :

I've been thinking about Dumbledore's leadership style and what it means in terms of Groupthink. Groupthink is a trap that groups fall into in which the group is so cohesive that no one questions anything until they make a huge mistake.

Groupthink is a term coined by psychologist Irving Janis in 1972 to describe one process by which a group can make bad or irrational decisions. In a groupthink situation, each member of the group attempts to conform his or her opinions to what they believe to be the consensus of the group. This results in a situation in which the group ultimately agrees on an action which each member might normally consider to be unwise (the risky shift).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Groupthink

An often given example of Groupthink is the Challenger Space Shuttle disaster, in which people saw obvious flaws and knew the astronauts were in danger, but were either told to shut up, or people didn't mention anything in deference to NASA leaders.

We were talking on the Deconstructing thread about ways Groupthink might have contributed to the deaths of the Potters and the obvious logical flaw in choosing Peter as Secret Keeper. I think the Marauder's themselves fell prey to this almost because they were too close to eachother and wouldn't allow anyone outside their group to question their decisions, even Dumbledore.

Here is a list of group traits that lead to Group Think:

~Insulation of the group
~High group cohesiveness
~Directive leadership
~Lack of norms requiring methodical procedures
~Homogeneity of members' social background and ideology
~High stress from external threats with low hope of a better solution than the one offered by the leader(s)

Groups like that often have symptoms of Groupthink:

~Illusion of invulnerability
~Unquestioned belief in the inherent morality of the group
~Collective rationalization of group's decisions
~Shared stereotypes of outgroup, particularly opponents
~Self-censorship; members withhold criticisms
~Illusion of unanimity (see false consensus effect)
~Direct pressure on dissenters to conform
~Self-appointed "mindguards" protect the group from negative information

You would think that feelings of "unanimity" and "shared Ideology" would lead to better decisions, wouldn't you? But when everything starts to get "too uniform" and people are not allowed to disagree for the "sake of the group," then things can get out of control. Without questioning or argument, groups take what is known as the "risky shift" and they do things together they would never consider doing alone. A good example of this is Lupin leaving the Shrieking Shack each month to run around with the Marauders. Lupin wouldn't choose to do that alone, but somehow the groupthink mentality gives them the "illusion" that they had things under control, plus the ideas that they are the "best and brightest" and they are "helping Lupin."

How can groupthink be avoided? Allowing people to argue, ask questions, and look at other scenarios.

Here is a list of the ways to avoid Groupthink:

a) The leader should assign the role of critical evaluator to each member
b) The leader should avoid stating preferences and expectations at the outset
c) Each member of the group should routinely discuss the groups' deliberations with a trusted associate and report back to the group on the associate's reactions
d) One or more experts should be invited to each meeting on a staggered basis. The outside experts should be encouraged to challenge views of the members.
e) At least one articulate and knowledgeable member should be given the role of devil's advocate (to question assumptions and plans)
f) The leader should make sure that a sizeable block of time is set aside to survey warning signals from rivals; leader and group construct alternative scenarios of rivals' intentions.

As I've been reading about this topic, everything points to the ability of members of the group to "Criticize" the leader or to criticize what the group is doing. We've talked alot about the arguments that happened at Grimmauld Place, and some people find them disturbing. But according to everything I read about Groupthink, being critical or arguing about certain points is natural and gives every member a voice.

Some leaders don't want any questions asked, but luckily Dumbledore isn't like that. He expects the adults to act in mature ways, but allows them to debate and argue. Disagree - but make up the next day, as Molly and Sirius try to do at Grimmauld Place.

However, I think the smaller group of the Marauders was different. Peter was able to fool everyone by being "nice." He would never have questioned James or Sirius, but acted as if he was going with the flow and doing anything they asked of him, including becoming secret keeper. Because he was so compliant, they thought he was their friend, and they were fooled.

Lupin, on the other hand, may have questioned some decisions. I keep coming back to that as a possible reason he was thought to be a spy. Perhaps they became uncomfortable with him because he was playing Devil's Advocate and questioning their judgement. I can't imagine James and Sirius allowing too much second-guessing of their plans, because they would see that as disloyalty, even to the point of suspecting someone was a spy. So they may have shunned Lupin at a crucial time when they really needed his input about the Secret Keeping situation.

If someone logical had looked more critically at the plan, the Potter's might have been saved. Dumbledore tried and failed to persuade James, and gave in because he thought Sirius would be a suitable SK. But then, James and Sirius changed the plan and didn't tell anyone - they were too involved in their own little world, and lacked a "second opinion" that Lupin might have provided.

According to the experts, however, one way to avoid "GroupThink" is to always have a Devil's Advocate always around to criticize what is going on. I would say that Snape fulfills this role admirably for Dumbledore. Snape is often criticized for disagreeing with everyone, but you can look at it as an "anti-groupthink" measure to have Snape around.

http://www.geocities.com/CollegePark/4110/think.htm

Every group should include a specific member who has the job of playing "devil's advocate." This person should seriously question much of what the group members say. The "devil's advocate" must be willing to vocally share his ideas with the rest of the group (Janis 267). This strategy will force the group to take a second look at every decision that is made. The "devil's advocate" of the group must be taken seriously and be allowed to speak at will if this strategy is to be effective.

This really gives me hope for the Order, since we see on Harry's first night at Grimmauld Place that Snape is right in the middle of things. Since I loved Black Adder's essay on the purpose of Snape as Harry's "Super Ego," always questioning him and telling him what he ought to be doing, it is an easy leap to see Snape as Dumbledore's Devil's Advocate for the Order.

Hey, I just realized - DA - Dumbledore's Army - Devil's Advocate (same initials, lol). :evil:

:evil: I've been known to play Devil's Advocate myself, from time to time, as you all know, lol.

I think it is an important idea, given that Snape will often espouse a different opinion than Dumbledore, even if he gives over to Dumbledore's opinion. Like a critical evaluator, Snape makes Dumbledore consider what his opinion is, make sure that what Snape gives as an alternate reason isn't logical/reasonable, before continuing on. At least, most times he has a logical alternative, although there are times I think he merely wants to get a dig in on Harry.

Yes, I think Snape walks a fine line sometimes. But he definitely shows Harry another side of things.

The Black Adder
May 12th, 2005, 6:07 pm
Hi, Black Adder! Great point - that is where Snape tells Karkaroff not to blame Dumbledore because Potter's been crossing lines since he got here. That is a perfect example of Snape acting as Harry's "Super ego" as in your excellent essay.
Ha! Yes, it is. But it is hard to tell which was Snape's primary motivation for the remark: a) to defend Dumbledore, b) to get in a dig against Harry, or c) to put Karkaroff in his place? I imagine he delighted in being able to accomplish all three with one remark.

"His black eyes were alight with malice." For which one? Harry or Karkaroff?

I do agree with Subtle that there was still fallout between DD and Snape over "outing" Lupin at the end of PoA. But that doesn't get in the way of their taking care of the more important business.

I assume things will get worse between Harry and Snape before they get better, but I do see their relationship needing to come to some sort of confrontation that will allow them to get past this current deadlock to a grudging respect and ability to work together on some level at least.

Whoa--SIP! Just saw your monster GroupThink post. Good stuff! I'm going to post this as is, and then be musing about your comments.

silver ink pot
May 12th, 2005, 6:44 pm
"His black eyes were alight with malice." For which one? Harry or Karkaroff?

Black Adder: What a great question! :tu: He probably isn't glad to see Igor at all because it is just a reminder of the "bad old days," you know?

Yes, my last post turned into a "monster," didn't it. I knew you would like that Black Adder. I'm pretty much obsessed with this today, lol.

winky22
May 12th, 2005, 7:37 pm
PS--winky22: vickilind was joining in on a joke that started earlier with clkginny; we were all just fooling around : ) .

Sorry i tend to speed read and not take it all in :rolleyes: and you have so much to say :tu:

Potions Mistres
May 12th, 2005, 10:34 pm
Wow, SIP, your post on Groupthink was awesome! It even made me pull out my International Relations textbook to see what the author had to say. And I did this in my free time, with no professor telling me to do it or no paper to put in! :lol:

I can see your point about Snape being the Devil's Advocate and thus using his views, comments, and general snarkiness to avoid a groupthink situation. Compare this to Dumbledore, and I see the Headmaster more in a position of John F. Kennedy during the Cuban Missile Crisis. He is there to give his opinions, views, etc. but also "leaves the room" and removes the authority figure, allowing for freer discussion--in some cases, allowing Snape more manuverability to play Devil's Advocate.

On another note, I think it was subtle science who predicted we have not seen the last of SWM. I think that is spot on. I think that it may serve as a point where both Harry and Snape will get past a lot of this mutual animosity toward each other. I think that Harry will have to make some sort of amends for breaking into Snape's memory, but I also think that will force Snape to see that Harry is not a carbon-copy of James (and I hope, see that James was not as one-dimensional as Snape thinks he was).

subtle science
May 12th, 2005, 11:10 pm
I've been digging...

I went on a hunt for scenes during which Snape contradicts or argues with Dumbledore, and I discovered that it's really CoS and PoA where that happens.

In CoS, it's fairly mild--and, actually, justified, after the boys have arrived by car:

Snape looked as though Christmaas had been canceled. He cleared his throat and said, "Professor Dumbeldore, these boys have flouted the Decree for the Restriction of Underage Wizardry, caused serious damage to an old and valuable tree--surely acts of this natire--"
"It will be for Professor McGonagall to decide on these boys' punishment, Severus," said Dumbledore calmly. "They are in her House and are therefore her responsibility." He turned to Professor McGonagall. "I must go back to the feast, Minerva, I've got to give out a few notices. Come, Severus, there's a delicious-looking custard tart I want to sample--"
Snape shot a look of pure venom at Harry and Ron as he allowed himself to be swept out of his office... (p. 82, US paper).

But Dumbledore's point is also justified--and there is no further discussion because it's not necessary. There's no tension here at all, even though Snape is disappointed that this is not an opportunity to make Harry suffer; he just goes with Dumbledore back to the feast, willingly enough.

Later, when Mrs. Norris is petrified, Snape makes the outrageous suggestion that a punishment for Harry's apparently not telling the truth would be his suspension from the Quidditch team. Dumbledore doesn't even deal with that one; McGonagall sees right through her Quidditch rival's manuever and calls him on it--with no further protestation from Snape, even though he looks "furious" after Dumbeldore comments, "Innocent until proven guilty, Severus" (p. 144). Again, Snape's just annoyed that Harry escaped his punishment--it was worth a try!

In PoA, hwoever, things take a very different turn. There's real anger in these arguments--and not just from Snape.

It begins with the scene in the Great Hall, when the castle is being searched for Sirius, and Snape reports to Dumbledore in the middle of the night. A main point of the scene is that they have clearly had this conversation before.

"Have you any theory as to how [Black] got in, Professor?" asked Snape....
"Many, Severus, each of them as unlikely as the next"....
"You remember the conversation we had, Headmaster, just before--ah--the start of term?"....
"I do, Severus," said Dumbledore, and there was something like warning in his voice.
"It seems--almost impossible--that Black could've netered the school without inside help. I did express my concerns when you appointed--"
"I do not believe a single person inside this castle would have helped Black enter it," said Dumbledore, and his tone made it so clear that the subject was closed that Snape didn't reply....
Dumbeldore left the hall, walking quickly and quietly. Snape stood for a moment, watching the headmaster with an expression of deep resentment on his face; then he too left (pp. 165-166).

This time, Dumbledore himself is angry, and he shows it. His interruption of Snape is in no way kindly--no custard tarts here. He shuts Snape down--and he walks out after a word with Percy. And--Snape's angry look is not directed at Harry: this time, he means Dumbledore. Not happy.

Snape's resentment reveals itself in the Shack, when he tells Lupin, "I shall be interested to see how Dumbledore takes this" (p. 359)--he obviously feels he's won the argument; he's got proof that Dumbledore should've listened to him all along. Yet, Dumbeldore does not, and the ending scenes of PoA show Snape in a high fury at Dumbledore for it. He actually lays into Dumbledore:

"I suppose [Sirius has] told you the same fairy tale he's planted in Potter's mind?" spat Snape. "Soemthing about a rat, and Pettigrew being alive--"
"That, indeed, is Black's story," said Dumbledore, surveying Snape closely through his half-moon spectacles.
"And does my evidence count for nothing?" snarled Snape....
"I would like to speak to Harry and Hermione alone," said Dumbledore abruptly. "Cornelius, Severus, Poppy--please leave us"....
[Fudge] crossed to the door and held it open for Snape, but Snape hadn't moved.
"You surely don't believe a word of Black's story?" Snape whispered, his eyes fixed on Dumbledore's face.
"I wish to speak to Harry and Hermione alone," Dumbledore repeated.
Snape took a step toward Dumbledore.
"Sirius Black showed he was capable of murder at the age of sixteen," he breathed. "You haven't forgotten that, Headmaster? You haven't forgotten that he once tried to kill me?"
"My memory is as good as it ever was, Severus," said Dumbeldore quietly.
Snape turned on his heel and marched through the door Fudge was still holding (pp. 390-391).

Snape reverts to his trademark whisper, indicating he's beyond angry at this point. His dismissal, along with Fudge and Pomfrey; Dumbeldore's 'choosing' Black's testimony over his; Dumbledore's refusal to consider Snape's ideas--fury. He's been told to leave, but he didn't, so his eventual exit becomes his walking out on Dumbledore. He's going to repeat it in the final explosion.

"YOU DON'T KNOW POTTER!" shrieked Snape. "HE DID IT, I KNOW HE DID IT--"
"That will do, Severus," said Dumbledore quietly. "Think about what you are saying. This door has been locked since I left the ward ten minutes ago. Madam Pomfrey, have these students left their beds?"
"Of course not!"....
"Well, there you have it, Severus," said Dumbledore calmly. "Unless you are suggesting that Harry and Hermione are able to be in two places at once, I'm afraid I don't see any point in troubling them further."
Snape stood there, seething, staring from Fudge, who looked thoroughly shocked at his behavior, to Dumbledore, whose eyes were twinkling behind his glasses. Snape whirled about, robes swishing behind him, and stormed out of the ward (p. 420).

Not only will Dumbledore not listen to Snape, but his attitude is infuriating. Snape is right; he knows that something is up, and he is being shunted aside. The "twinkling" eyes could imply that Dumbledore is even laughing a bit at Snape--which is hardly a good approach when Snape is in (for him) a good mood. Here, Snape feels condescended to and made to look a fool. It is interesting to note that, in both this scene and the previous, he pauses, as if he'd say more, but instead turns and walks out. As infuriated as he is--he won't quite go so far as to say to Dumbledore what he really would like to...and we know he has an extensive and colorful vocabulary, thanks to SWM.

winky22
May 12th, 2005, 11:20 pm
I've been digging...

I went on a hunt for scenes during which Snape contradicts or argues with Dumbledore, and I discovered that it's really CoS and PoA where that happens.

In CoS, it's fairly mild--and, actually, justified, after the boys have arrived by car:

Snape looked as though Christmaas had been canceled. He cleared his throat and said, "Professor Dumbeldore, these boys have flouted the Decree for the Restriction of Underage Wizardry, caused serious damage to an old and valuable tree--surely acts of this natire--"
"It will be for Professor McGonagall to decide on these boys' punishment, Severus," said Dumbledore calmly. "They are in her House and are therefore her responsibility." He turned to Professor McGonagall. "I must go back to the feast, Minerva, I've got to give out a few notices. Come, Severus, there's a delicious-looking custard tart I want to sample--"
Snape shot a look of pure venom at Harry and Ron as he allowed himself to be swept out of his office... (p. 82, US paper).

But Dumbledore's point is also justified--and there is no further discussion because it's not necessary. There's no tension here at all, even though Snape is disappointed that this is not an opportunity to make Harry suffer; he just goes with Dumbledore back to the feast, willingly enough.

Later, when Mrs. Norris is petrified, Snape makes the outrageous suggestion that a punishment for Harry's apparently not telling the truth would be his suspension from the Quidditch team. Dumbledore doesn't even deal with that one; McGonagall sees right through her Quidditch rival's manuever and calls him on it--with no further protestation from Snape, even though he looks "furious" after Dumbeldore comments, "Innocent until proven guilty, Severus" (p. 144). Again, Snape's just annoyed that Harry escaped his punishment--it was worth a try!

In PoA, hwoever, things take a very different turn. There's real anger in these arguments--and not just from Snape.

It begins with the scene in the Great Hall, when the castle is being searched for Sirius, and Snape reports to Dumbledore in the middle of the night. A main point of the scene is that they have clearly had this conversation before.

"Have you any theory as to how [Black] got in, Professor?" asked Snape....
"Many, Severus, each of them as unlikely as the next"....
"You remember the conversation we had, Headmaster, just before--ah--the start of term?"....
"I do, Severus," said Dumbledore, and there was something like warning in his voice.
"It seems--almost impossible--that Black could've netered the school without inside help. I did express my concerns when you appointed--"
"I do not believe a single person inside this castle would have helped Black enter it," said Dumbledore, and his tone made it so clear that the subject was closed that Snape didn't reply....
Dumbeldore left the hall, walking quickly and quietly. Snape stood for a moment, watching the headmaster with an expression of deep resentment on his face; then he too left (pp. 165-166).

This time, Dumbledore himself is angry, and he shows it. His interruption of Snape is in no way kindly--no custard tarts here. He shuts Snape down--and he walks out after a word with Percy. And--Snape's angry look is not directed at Harry: this time, he means Dumbledore. Not happy.

Snape's resentment reveals itself in the Shack, when he tells Lupin, "I shall be interested to see how Dumbledore takes this" (p. 359)--he obviously feels he's won the argument; he's got proof that Dumbledore should've listened to him all along. Yet, Dumbeldore does not, and the ending scenes of PoA show Snape in a high fury at Dumbledore for it. He actually lays into Dumbledore:

"I suppose [Sirius has] told you the same fairy tale he's planted in Potter's mind?" spat Snape. "Soemthing about a rat, and Pettigrew being alive--"
"That, indeed, is Black's story," said Dumbledore, surveying Snape closely through his half-moon spectacles.
"And does my evidence count for nothing?" snarled Snape....
"I would like to speak to Harry and Hermione alone," said Dumbledore abruptly. "Cornelius, Severus, Poppy--please leave us"....
[Fudge] crossed to the door and held it open for Snape, but Snape hadn't moved.
"You surely don't believe a word of Black's story?" Snape whispered, his eyes fixed on Dumbledore's face.
"I wish to speak to Harry and Hermione alone," Dumbledore repeated.
Snape took a step toward Dumbledore.
"Sirius Black showed he was capable of murder at the age of sixteen," he breathed. "You haven't forgotten that, Headmaster? You haven't forgotten that he once tried to kill me?"
"My memory is as good as it ever was, Severus," said Dumbeldore quietly.
Snape turned on his heel and marched through the door Fudge was still holding (pp. 390-391).

Snape reverts to his trademark whisper, indicating he's beyond angry at this point. His dismissal, along with Fudge and Pomfrey; Dumbeldore's 'choosing' Black's testimony over his; Dumbledore's refusal to consider Snape's ideas--fury. He's been told to leave, but he didn't, so his eventual exit becomes his walking out on Dumbledore. He's going to repeat it in the final explosion.

"YOU DON'T KNOW POTTER!" shrieked Snape. "HE DID IT, I KNOW HE DID IT--"
"That will do, Severus," said Dumbledore quietly. "Think about what you are saying. This door has been locked since I left the ward ten minutes ago. Madam Pomfrey, have these students left their beds?"
"Of course not!"....
"Well, there you have it, Severus," said Dumbledore calmly. "Unless you are suggesting that Harry and Hermione are able to be in two places at once, I'm afraid I don't see any point in troubling them further."
Snape stood there, seething, staring from Fudge, who looked thoroughly shocked at his behavior, to Dumbledore, whose eyes were twinkling behind his glasses. Snape whirled about, robes swishing behind him, and stormed out of the ward (p. 420).

Not only will Dumbledore not listen to Snape, but his attitude is infuriating. Snape is right; he knows that something is up, and he is being shunted aside. The "twinkling" eyes could imply that Dumbledore is even laughing a bit at Snape--which is hardly a good approach when Snape is in (for him) a good mood. Here, Snape feels condescended to and made to look a fool. It is interesting to note that, in both this scene and the previous, he pauses, as if he'd say more, but instead turns and walks out. As infuriated as he is--he won't quite go so far as to say to Dumbledore what he really would like to...and we know he has an extensive and colorful vocabulary, thanks to SWM.

You dig well :cool:

There are obviously many of times that Snape is mad with Dumbledore, we know that the last thing that Snape wants is to look a fool and he has done that to his self a few times with his petty opproach to Harry because of how James was to him. Do you think though that he would ever be so mad with DD that he betrays him?

subtle science
May 13th, 2005, 12:24 am
There really aren't many instances when Snape is angry with Dumbledore--I'm going to re-comb GoF, but I think the extent of it is in the scene with Maxime and Karkaroff, when they question Dumbledore and Harry's truthfulness. That scene is too difficult to figure out: how much is an act? how much is Snape taking aim at Harry (as he did throughout the CoS examples)? how much is Snape still being angry over the events and treatment in PoA?

We don't see anything in PS/SS, nor in OotP. It really is PoA that's the one book wherein Snape disagrees with Dumbeldore and does so vehemently. Snape is angry with Harry at the end of PoA, but his dialogue is aimed at Dumbledore: he's furious at the Headmaster. And, I'll venture, considering Snape's level of respect for and trust in Dumbledore, that some of this fury derives from hurt. The end of PoA is like a painful rerun of 20 years ago, when, it seems, there was no punishment handed out for the Willow incident. Dumbledore is not pleased with Snape, and he doesn't treat him with much respect in the ward.

However, I think the key factor is that Snape walks out, twice, when it's clear that he has lost his temper with Dumbledore. Contrast this with his showdown in the 12GP kitchen with Sirius--he wasn't going to back down there; the only thing that stopped further escalation was the arrival of the Weasleys. Not that I think he was at quite the emotional level there that he was with Dumbledore in PoA, but I think that only further underscores the significance of his walking out on Dumbledore in PoA. He wasn't going to take the situation further. A bit of self-censorship, if you will.

And therefore--no, I don't see Snape ever getting so angry that he would betray Dumbledore. He just showed in PoA that he can't get that petty, because he can't even verbally attack Dumbledore--and does anyone doubt that Snape is fully capable of doing that, should he have wanted to? What Dumbledore did to him in PoA could not alter the fundamental respect and trust--it was all surface, as is shown by later events in GoF and OotP.

Chievrefueil
May 13th, 2005, 1:37 am
Everyone's posts have been so good in this version that I haven't had anything to say until now!Snape's resentment reveals itself in the Shack, when he tells Lupin, "I shall be interested to see how Dumbledore takes this" (p. 359)--he obviously feels he's won the argument; he's got proof that Dumbledore should've listened to him all along.Your drawing attention to this line is interesting. For some reason, I'd always read the line as if Snape would have his revenge on Lupin because Dumbledore would finally see what Lupin is--a traitor; but, it really reads as if Snape's revenge will be on Dumbledore, doesn't it?

subtle science
May 13th, 2005, 2:01 am
Chievrefueil--That's how I see it, too. It's as if Snape is throwing down the gauntlet to Dumbledore--'there, what do you think of that?!'--even though he;s speaking to Lupin. Part of it may be Lupin's reaction, since Snape just heard Lupin's confessing to guilt over deceiving Dumbledore. However, in terms of Snape's character, it seems as if he's gloating over facing Dumbledore with the fact of Lupin's deceit, which Dumbledore has been denying. Again, I hear the echo of 20 years ago--and the result is the same, as far as Snape is concerned: Dumbledore will accept Lupin's and Sirius accounts over Snape's....

RemusLupinFan
May 13th, 2005, 2:56 am
~PoA, p. 359 American edition~
"I shall be interested to see how Dumbledore takes this.... He was quite convinced you were harmless, you know, Lupin... a tame werewolf --"You're right, subtle science. Especially when you look at this quote in context, it does appear that Snape is looking forward to saying, "I told you so" to Dumbledore. As he says here, he wants to set Dumbledore's perception of Lupin straight- he wants him to finally realize that Lupin is not "harmless", as he puts it, and that Lupin was indeed helping Sirius get into the castle (although we know that’s not true). At this point, Snape seems to want revenge* not only just on Sirius and Lupin, but also a bit on Dumbledore for not believing him when he said Lupin was untrustworthy.

*Perhaps "revenge" isn't quite what I mean in regards to Snape wanting to set Dumbledore straight- I think it's more like he wants Dumbledore to concede his "mistake" in judgment in trusting Lupin, and I think he wants Dumbledore to see that Lupin isn't as good as Dumbledore originally thought.

vickilind
May 13th, 2005, 5:02 am
ETA: RLFan, I just saw your post. It made me think that perhaps part of the problem with Snape and Harry, is that many of the Draco/Harry confrontations have been walked in on at a point in which it appears that Harry is the agressor. Perhaps part of Snape's opinion that Harry is just like his father is that from Snape's POV, Harry is bullying Draco. Anyway, just a thought, I haven't had time to consider it thoroughly yet.

That is a good observation CLK. He does seem to come in at at point where it looks like Harry is the bad guy. We know that Harry is reacting to Draco, but to Snape, it would appear that Harry is just James reincarnated. And we all know how Snape feels about James. James was a bully, and Harry is a bully. Snape must feel some sense of "turnabout is fairplay" now that he is in a position of authority and can punish Harry. I wonder if he imagines that it's James? Takes great pleasure from it? It would seem so.

Chievrefueil
May 13th, 2005, 6:02 am
I pulled this from the thread about whether or not Voldemort is under the Imperius Curse and there is really another bad guy behind everything ( :lol: ):Put it this way, I don't believe Harry is a powerful wizard by thought, he is a power wizard by emotion, he always pulls his most powerful magic when it is threatened or emotionally like when he stung Snape when he was teaching him Occumlcey,This poster seems to be arguing that a wizard's power comes from emotion. It is true that Harry is most powerful when he is emotional--the most obvious example is when he throws off Voldemort through his love for Sirius. In that case, I always believed that it was the emotion, love, that Voldemort couldn't abide, but what if there's more to it? Wandless magic seems to be a powerful force that's tied to emotion. Is strength of emotion tied to the wizard's power? Dumbledore has an abundance of good emotion and is a powerful good wizard. Voldemort has an abundance of hateful emotion and is a powerful evil wizard.

The reason I brought the quote here is because Snape has such tight control over his emotions. Would he need to express emotion in order to perform powerful magic? I'm having a difficult time putting this into words, but I also feel this idea ties in with the idea that Snape will need to release his good emotions (most notably, love) in order to complete his redemption. Is this idea crazy? (It's definitely half-baked! :p )

HedwigOwl
May 13th, 2005, 6:36 am
I pulled this from the thread about whether or not Voldemort is under the Imperius Curse and there is really another bad guy behind everything ( :lol: ):This poster seems to be arguing that a wizard's power comes from emotion. It is true that Harry is most powerful when he is emotional--the most obvious example is when he throws off Voldemort through his love for Sirius. In that case, I always believed that it was the emotion, love, that Voldemort couldn't abide, but what if there's more to it? Wandless magic seems to be a powerful force that's tied to emotion. Is strength of emotion tied to the wizard's power? Dumbledore has an abundance of good emotion and is a powerful good wizard. Voldemort has an abundance of hateful emotion and is a powerful evil wizard.

The reason I brought the quote here is because Snape has such tight control over his emotions. Would he need to express emotion in order to perform powerful magic? I'm having a difficult time putting this into words, but I also feel this idea ties in with the idea that Snape will need to release his good emotions (most notably, love) in order to complete his redemption. Is this idea crazy? (It's definitely half-baked! :p )

No, not crazy. Reasonable actually. The possibility that emotion is a key ingredient in magical power (in addition to knowledge, words, focus, wand) has been discussed on another thread -- "Harry's Power" I think. VM uses hate and loathing, Harry uses love (and righteous anger, according to Bella), DD probably similar to Harry (plus all that life experience), Pettigrew uses fear...you get the idea. Wandless magic seems a mix of powerful emotion and focus or intention. I don't know what emotion Snape might be using...he might be so highly focused and controlled that we don't see the emotion, but that doesn't mean it's not there.

silver ink pot
May 13th, 2005, 7:21 am
~PoA, p. 359 American edition~
"I shall be interested to see how Dumbledore takes this.... He was quite convinced you were harmless, you know, Lupin... a tame werewolf --"You're right, subtle science. Especially when you look at this quote in context, it does appear that Snape is looking forward to saying, "I told you so" to Dumbledore. As he says here, he wants to set Dumbledore's perception of Lupin straight- he wants him to finally realize that Lupin is not "harmless", as he puts it, and that Lupin was indeed helping Sirius get into the castle (although we know that’s not true). At this point, Snape seems to want revenge* not only just on Sirius and Lupin, but also a bit on Dumbledore for not believing him when he said Lupin was untrustworthy.

*Perhaps "revenge" isn't quite what I mean in regards to Snape wanting to set Dumbledore straight- I think it's more like he wants Dumbledore to concede his "mistake" in judgment in trusting Lupin, and I think he wants Dumbledore to see that Lupin isn't as good as Dumbledore originally thought.

:tu: Great Post, RemusLupinFan, and I agree with you, Subtle, and Chiev.

It is hard to pin down what Snape is thinking. I wouldn't call it revenge, either. My gut feeling the first time I read that line was that it was sort of like sibling rivalry between Snape and all the Marauders. Snape wants to be seen metaphorically as "the good son," and gain Dumbledore's appreciation.

I think Snape realizes, too, that the students like Lupin, and probably the other teachers like Lupin, too. Remember Trelawney at Christmas dinner, looking around for Lupin? ;) Most people who aren't well-liked sometimes envy those who are considered "nice" or "pleasant." Although Snape does nothing to make himself popular, I believe he still values that trait.

(Off-topic: This just popped into my head - Have any of you ever read a story called "An Old-Fashioned Story" by an American writer named Laurie Colwin? It is set in modern New York City, but it reads like a Jane Austen
novel. The main character (named Elizabeth, of course) is a girl who wants to break off with her snobbish family, but her mother keeps pulling her back. Her best girl-friend is named "Holly," lol. Her life-long nemesis is a nerdish boy named Nelson, but whom everyone calls "Nellie," and he is the "good son" in his family. :tu: The family calls his brother "the bad son," lol, and his name is . . . James, lol. James is a drunken poet/insurance salesman, but Elizabeth thinks he is "dangerous" and exciting, so eventually to shock her family she throws herself at him, only to find that he is a dreadful bore. The whole thing shocks Nellie into punching out his brother, and professing his love to Elizabeth, and of course they live happily ever after.

This was made into an American Playhouse episode on PBS, and the title was changed to "Ask Me Again." If you can get a copy, the video is really entertaining. Laurie Colwin, alas, died some years ago at an early age.)

albie
May 13th, 2005, 7:34 am
firstly , my thanks to SUBTLE for digging into the SWM scene so well.
secondly , i DO think this was a setup , because Snape was not nearly as angry as he should have been . he was hell , fire and brimstone at the end of POA, when Sirius had escaped , and the Order of Merlin slipped through his slimy grasp . that caused him to yell himself hoarse , spit flying from his mouth , the works !!! (infact , i think Barty Sr is the only other person to display the same level of -er- naked emotion , if you will , as he was in a very emotionally charged situation as well )
but take a look at what happened in OOTP ! am i saying Snape was not angry ? certainly not!! he was extremely angry , but the reaction just cannot be compared to the one at the end of POA , and he had absoleutely NO reason to control his anger at Harry at all. and here (sorry i cant find ur quote) all Snape does is to shake him up , throw him away from him and bellow at him not to repeat it to anybody !! could not this have been the opportune moment for Snape to really , i mean really , dish it out to Harry about just how ....amusing.....James was , and how he had been right about the arrogance of the 2 marauders (please , Moony was a great guy!!) ? could not Snape have used this to berate Harry for his own arrogance , the one chance for snape to go......all-out on the Potter boy ?
and yet , he holds himself in check , reins in the tempest . why ?
he had planned it all . Harry SEES him putting the memories into the Pensieve , Snape knows Harry's curiosity is legend and the boy is too nosy for his own good . so , what does he do ? puts in the memory he WANTS Harry to see , and this memeory'll be sure to eat him up from the insides for sure ( as we know it did , i really dont think either Sirius or Lupin did much in the way of consoling Harry ) . later , when(?) Snape realized the damage had been done , he pulls Hary out and lets him off with a .....simple reprimand .
and honestly , even considering what grave implications childhood incidents can have on a person's mind , especially if their mental-make-up is not very strong ,could THIS really have been Snape's worst memory at all ? I mean , think about it . He's supposedly had a bad family background ( an abusive dad , maybe?) , a terrible school life , but then , he turns DE and THEN , even greater , turns spy for Albus "AT GREAT PERSONAL RISK(????????)" . could a childhood memory scar him so deep as to wash over all THAT? what on EARTH induced Snape to change sides at all ? (this must be the second greatest question in the series, i guess ) . whatever it might have been , it cant have been too pleasant for Snape , if he could muster the guts to ditch Voldemort . can SWM eclipse all THAT ? i think the chapter title is a misleading one . its a terrible memory , more for Harry than Snape .

winky22
May 13th, 2005, 9:01 am
Doe's everyone assume that Snape intended for Harry to see SWM? I'm not too sure, well i was sure that he did at one point but then i changed my mind. If he thought that Harry was so much like his father then wouldn't he think he would go off and tell the whole school about what he had saw thus damaging Snape reputation a bit. I would have thought if he thought about Harry that way then he wouldn't of intended him to see it, would he have known that he was going to get called away, for Harry to have the chance to look.

I've made myself even more unsure now :huh: , what do you all think?

Trisha
May 13th, 2005, 9:22 am
As much as people want to rewrite Severus into a tragic figure, the fact is he is 1) unpleasant, 2) immature, 3) opportunistic, and 4) strongly set up as Harry's antagonist at Hogwarts. His role is to take the slack off Voldemort (who can't be in every book, or we would have stopped reading them by now.)
Every school-centered children's book has to have one teacher who is somewhere on the line between mildly annoying to outright sadistic. This sets up conflict. It is particularly effective if that adult is the "gatekeeper," preventing the main character from being a hero and saving the day. Of course, the adult never succeeds and the child gets to have his adventure without restrictions from this substitute parent.

Or I could simply reread Black Adder's excellent editorial about Snape as the superego.

Snape's reputation as a hardcase has grown with the years. He didn't begin by singling Harry Potter out, he just let his resentments spill over into the classroom during their first meeting. Some of that might be keeping Harry from outing him as a spy to Voldemort, but at the bottom is a clear lack of perspective, fostered by years of resentment.

He may survive through Book 7, but I have no expectations of him.

Mcpherson
May 13th, 2005, 10:31 am
The reason I brought the quote here is because Snape has such tight control over his emotions. Would he need to express emotion in order to perform powerful magic? I'm having a difficult time putting this into words, but I also feel this idea ties in with the idea that Snape will need to release his good emotions (most notably, love) in order to complete his redemption. Is this idea crazy? (It's definitely half-baked! )

If the emotions are the main force for doing powerful magic, then Severus one of the best wizards ever. How I understand this emotion-fueled magic is that you don't need to show any of your feelings as it makes you unfathomable for the rest, since nobody can estimate your true skill when you don't show your feelings in this ostentatious way as i.e. Harry does.

Being difficult to be estimated during a duel would have been another reason for Snape, apart from the protection from Voldemort, to hide his feelings and be so proud of it. When Severus lectures Harry during the Occlumency lesson on the importance of hiding and taming your emotions, he gives a really great piece of advice--this is something that Harry lacks, something that may endanger the boy when dealing with Voldemort or his supporters. This is one of the most important things for Harry to learn, shame he doesn't understand it or is reluctant to follow advice of someone loathed so much, Snape.

Going back to Severus and his emotions, I think that the amazing ability to control emotions is a great help when doing wandless magic--Harry would have been a very good wizard if he had managed to concentrate and to steer, to vent his emotions in such a way that could boost his magic. Since Snape knows how to do this, he manages wandless magic.

and here (sorry i cant find ur quote) all Snape does is to shake him up , throw him away from him and bellow at him not to repeat it to anybody !! could not this have been the opportune moment for Snape to really , i mean really , dish it out to Harry about just how ....amusing.....James was , and how he had been right about the arrogance of the 2 marauders (please , Moony was a great guy!!) ? could not Snape have used this to berate Harry for his own arrogance , the one chance for snape to go......all-out on the Potter boy ?

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English (http://www.dict.org/bin/Dict?Form=Dict1&Strategy=*&Database=*&Query=arrogance)
Arrogance \Ar"ro*gance\, n. [F., fr. L. arrogantia, fr.
arrogans. See Arrogant.]
The act or habit of arrogating, or making undue claims in an
overbearing manner; that species of pride which consists in
exorbitant claims of rank, dignity, estimation, or power, or
which exalts the worth or importance of the person to an
undue degree; proud contempt of others; lordliness;
haughtiness; self-assumption; presumption.

I wish I understood what you wanted to say: do you mean that this was the one and only occasion for Snape to be arrogant, or that Severus should use the situation to get the arrogance out of Harry? As you see, I even looked the word 'arrogance' up in the dictionary in order to understand you post... :blush:

and yet , he holds himself in check , reins in the tempest . why ?
he had planned it all . Harry SEES him putting the memories into the Pensieve , Snape knows Harry's curiosity is legend and the boy is too nosy for his own good . so , what does he do ? puts in the memory he WANTS Harry to see , and this memeory'll be sure to eat him up from the insides for sure

There's a theory that Snape did all of this on purpose--to finally show Harry what an awful bully his father was and to have a good reason to stop giving Occlumency lessons. But don't you think that it would have required an awful lot of masochism. While we know that Severus can be a sadist at times, I doubt that he would like to cause pain to himself. As he undoubtedly still thinks about that scene and this wound hasn't been healed after all those years, Snape must feel pain upon realising that his student knows about this episode of Potions Master's life. Do you think Severus would do such a thing to himself? Also, I doubt that Snape wanted from all the people at Hogwarts Harry to see the scene and to pity him. To be pitied by an enemy? But also, Severus seems not to realise that Harry pities him--Snape thinks that it must have been a great sight for the boy... Arrr, enough babbling.

albie
May 13th, 2005, 12:14 pm
I wish I understood what you wanted to say: do you mean that this was the one and only occasion for Snape to be arrogant, or that Severus should use the situation to get the arrogance out of Harry?

Sorry it wasnt as lucid as required . This was the occassion for Snape to show Harry how similar he was to his father w.r.t that quality they both(according to him) share - arrogance . He does something of the same nature in POA too (Snape's Grudge)

"How extraordinarily like your father you are , Potter . He too was exceedingly arrogant...."

However , here the intention was to provoke Harry , this was a bait . In the OOTP scene , it was different . Harry had just seen proof of Daddy's arrogance , Severus had the upper hand already.

PHEW ! That clarified ,on to
There's a theory that Snape did all of this on purpose--to finally show Harry what an awful bully his father was and to have a good reason to stop giving Occlumency lessons. But don't you think that it would have required an awful lot of masochism. While we know that Severus can be a sadist at times, I doubt that he would like to cause pain to himself.

One thing I agree outright with you Mc , is that Snape would have hated Harry showing him any sympathy , I hope we dont have any such scenes in the future as well , the cold , fathomless persona that Snape has as of now must remain. But I still think he would have shown Harry the vision , No , not to elicit sympathy from him , but to torment him , which , to a considerable extent , he succeeded in doing .

I didnt exactly get this , kindly elaborate .
As he undoubtedly still thinks about that scene and this wound hasn't been healed after all those years, Snape must feel pain upon realising that his student knows about this episode of Potions Master's life.

Also , I just realised another -er- rather cruelly damaging thing that Severus accomplished with this SWM .This is the very first time in the series we see Lily and James talking to each other (call that talkin??) and by this, Snape dealt his blow- he sowed a seed in Harry's mind about his parents' marriage . :td: :td: He had Harry worried enough to wonder if James had forced Lily into the marriage , this must be torture to any child , and if he's an orphan as well , you can imagine . I really dont know WHY he did this , if this WAS intentional at all . I dont know what else he was trying to get out of this , apart from a tortured Harry . Was JKR trying to tell us something about the Potters ? Will we find out more soon , within 60-odd days, to be precise ?

CHEERS !!

subtle science
May 13th, 2005, 12:32 pm
Trisha--But Snape did single Harry out in the first Potions class; he spoke to no other student as he did to Harry. Not even Neville, who created havoc on day one, was subjected to the interrogation to prove how little he knew. And I don't understand how this episode keeps Harry from 'outing' Snape as a spy...I also don't know why Harry would possibly want to do that, as by the time he knows that Snape is a spy, in OotP, he also knows about the Order and its struggle against Voldemort. The third puzzler from your post is the sweeping generalization about nebulous people wanting to rewrite Snape's character.....?

albie--I agree with Mcpherson: deliberately setting Harry up in Occlumency to look into the Pensieve is just too masochistic. Plus, it's overly complicated: just from a plot standpoint, it's far too clunky--Snape also has to arrange being interrrupted (twice), which means he also had to engineer the Twins putting the Slytherin captain into the Vanishing Cabinet, which means he also needed to know approximately when the kid would reappear (it had to be during the lesson, or all of the previous work would have been for nothing); he also needed to get Trelawney fired and make sure that she caused enough of a scene in the Great Hall to be heard in the dungeons...Not to mention that he had to have known that Harry would not respect his privacy and decide to look. All of that, when he simply could've sent the memory into Harry's mind under the guise of the lesson itself. Occam's Razor.

I think Snape is infuriated beyond anything we've ever seen in the books, after SWM. Harry is petrified with fear--he doesn't recognize this Snape, either; he's seen Snape angry before, and he has regarded him with some trepidation in those moods...but Harry has also lost some of that fear along the way (his defiance in PoA comes to mind). After SWM, Harry feels a "thrill of horror" when he sees adult Snape, who is "white with rage" (p. 649, US hardcover).

In PoA, Snape is extremely angry--pushed to his limit of tolerance by both Harry and Dumbledore. In SWM, he's beyond the limit, demonstrated by his physical violence against his student--something he's never, ever done before:

"gripping Harry's arm so tightly Harry's hand was starting to feel numb."

"shaking Harry so hard that his glasses slipped down his nose."

"Snape threw Harry from him with all his might. Harry fell hard onto the dungeon floor."

"getting to his feet as far from Snape as he could."

"a jar of cockroaches exploded over his head." (pp. 649-650)

The only other violence we've seen from Snape is against James, in SWM, when Snape also was pushed beyond his limits. Even then, though, he used magic to slash James' face. Against Harry, the violence is personal--literally 'hands on.' This one is the scene of Snape out of control. At the end of PoA, Snape may seem to be out of control, but he still has enough presence of mind to walk away. Here, he's physically assaulting a student.

RemusLupinFan and silver ink pot--I agree: it's not quite revenge he wants on Dumbledore, but a kind of vindication...but more than that, because he does seem to want Dumbledore to have to eat a bit of crow over this and to recognize that he is the 'good son.' It also, then, seems to me to lead directly to his outing of Lupin, since he doesn't get that satisfaction at all from Dumbledore; since Dumbledore won't do it, Snape takes care of the situation himself (he already is on the outs with 'Dad'; he may as well earn it, and do what he knows is 'right,' since Dad can't see it--maybe he'll appreciate it someday).

The idea of the emotion behind the magic is interesting. Harry doesn't have the proper kind of anger and hate to produce Cruciatus effectively, but he can throw off Voldemort with love....Dumbledore could produce effective Dark curses, apparently, but elects not to....Snape, it seems, can slash James' face with the use of a wand, but no incantation....

Anybody want to make anything of the fact that he does choose physical violence against Harry in the Pensieve aftermath, instead of a magical assault?
).

albie
May 13th, 2005, 1:12 pm
posted by Subtle
albie--I agree with Mcpherson: deliberately setting Harry up in Occlumency to look into the Pensieve is just too masochistic. Plus, it's overly complicated: just from a plot standpoint, it's far too clunky--Snape also has to arrange being interrrupted (twice), which means he also had to engineer the Twins putting the Slytherin captain into the Vanishing Cabinet, which means he also needed to know approximately when the kid would reappear (it had to be during the lesson, or all of the previous work would have been for nothing); he also needed to get Trelawney fired and make sure that she caused enough of a scene in the Great Hall to be heard in the dungeons...Not to mention that he had to have known that Harry would not respect his privacy and decide to look. All of that, when he simply could've sent the memory into Harry's mind under the guise of the lesson itself. Occam's Razor.

-er- No .
Snape chooses THIS as the occassion to show Harry his memory , not the earlier one with Trelawney getting fired , for the two scenes have absoleutely no connection at all really , THIS one's in the next chapter , if I'm not mistaken.. Snape put THAT memory THEN, as Harry came into the dungeon , fresh from a fight with Cho . The twins had already put Flint into the cabinet a long time ago , so Snape could not possibly have engineered that , I agree . Was Severus intending to show Harry that very day ? I doubt it , but he could just as easily excused himself ( had Malfoy not arrived then) and given Harry the time to snoop around . He could have shown him the memory anytime he wanted to , Malfoy appearing there happened to work to his advantage , that's all .

As for sending all this in a flash during the lesson ....I think not . When Harry asks Snape(during their first lesson) if Snape saw all that he had , Snape says , "Flashes of it" . What Harry gets to see in SWM is , considerably more than a "flash" . He saw the big picture , which was what snape wanted , not just a gash on the face of James, or a shouting Lily and an upturned guy with dirty pants !! ....as is my policy , I end with a ...CHEERS !!

( Wonder what Subtle'll come up with NOW )

subtle science
May 13th, 2005, 1:27 pm
Albie--To tell you the truth, I don't really follow your argument.

There are three Occlumency lessons. Three times Snape uses the Pensieve--I don't find it logical to think that he put different memories into it each time...? Two lessons are interrupted--first by Trelawney's firing ("Seen and Unforeseen") and second by Draco's reporting of Montague's return ("SWM"). Both times, Snape leaves Harry alone with the Pensieve. Both times, Harry has the opportunity to look into the Pensieve, and he elects to do so the second time.

Frankly, I don't know why or how SWM has to be a deliberate set up; it's not logical in terms of plot or character--it's a theory that makes little sense to me. It's needlessly complicated and structurally unsound. I don't get it...or its attraction....?

Snape explains to Harry that the art of Occlumency involves the creation of false memories for the Legilimens to read. What Snape and Harry are doing is simplistic, early training. Snape is not actually trying to read Harry's memories: he's trying to get Harry to block him--he's not out to gather information.

Mcpherson
May 13th, 2005, 1:30 pm
All of that, when he simply could've sent the memory into Harry's mind under the guise of the lesson itself. Occam's Razor.

Aww, Occam's Razor--this is the first thing my parents taught me...

The only other violence we've seen from Snape is against James, in SWM, when Snape also was pushed beyond his limits. Even then, though, he used magic to slash James' face. Against Harry, the violence is personal--literally 'hands on.' This one is the scene of Snape out of control. At the end of PoA, Snape may seem to be out of control, but he still has enough presence of mind to walk away. Here, he's physically assaulting a student.
Anybody want to make anything of the fact that he does choose physical violence against Harry in the Pensieve aftermath, instead of a magical assault?

Me! I want to do this... from the most prosaic perspective, Occam's Razor :evil: Severus used magic when he was assaulted by James, right? So why he didn't he use physical violence? Hmmm... because he was simply unable to--how could he run to get James? But with Harry it is different: the boy is stands so near that Snape could simply grab his arm. Why not to use such a nice opportunity? Maybe it was a kind of revenge, but instead of on James it was committed on Harry, as the boy seems to be a living copy of his late father. It would even more less suit the scene: Severus enters the room and sees that Harry is watching the memories in the pensieve--suddenly Snape recollects the painful memory of him being bullied. What's more, he sees the son of the bully violating his memory and probably enjoying the scene the same way James did. In this sudden fury, the Potions Master maybe even didn't realise that Harry and James are different entities with different feelings and thoughts... but it was enough to be remembered such a scene for Snape to have a reason to act rashly.

RemusLupinFan and silver ink pot--I agree: it's not quite revenge he wants on Dumbledore, but a kind of vindication...but more than that, because he does seem to want Dumbledore to have to eat a bit of crow over this and to recognize that he is the 'good son.' It also, then, seems to me to lead directly to his outing of Lupin, since he doesn't get that satisfaction at all from Dumbledore; since Dumbledore won't do it, Snape takes care of the situation himself (he already is on the outs with 'Dad'; he may as well earn it, and do what he knows is 'right,' since Dad can't see it--maybe he'll appreciate it someday).

Maybe this was also an effort to strengthen Severus's position in regarding Minerva. Professor McGonagall is Dumbledore's right hand when it comes to dealing with the problems of the school, but she seems to be the closest of all to the Headmaster in other cases too. She does everything that Albus asks her without much questioning. Apart from the old Gryffindor/Slytherin antagonism, Snape might be a bit envious of Minerva's position. After all, he is the one who does the most dangerous thing possible--spying, so he should get more respect and recognition. But alas, whatever he says is hushed by the Headmaster--showing that Remus is a bad guy after all would probably change this. But I guess this is too much of speculating and almost no proof in canon.

As for sending all this in a flash during the lesson ....I think not . When Harry asks Snape(during their first lesson) if Snape saw all that he had , Snape says , "Flashes of it" . What Harry gets to see in SWM is , considerably more than a "flash" . He saw the big picture , which was what snape wanted , not just a gash on the face of James, or a shouting Lily and an upturned guy with dirty pants !! ....as is my policy , I end with a ...CHEERS !!

ETA: As far as I remember, and correct me if I'm wrong, Snape said 'flashes' followed by something like 'whose dog was that' or something like that--it showed that Severus in fact saw more that just 'flashes'.

Norbertha
May 13th, 2005, 1:31 pm
Silver ~ thanks for bringing Groupthink into this thread too! :tu:

Severa: Welcome to the IWBTBIGOIASSSS as an honourary member! :welcome: We're having an "all things bitter" party for Snape at the moment. You are welcome to come along - and bring something bitter to eat or drink if you like. ;)

The reason I brought the quote here is because Snape has such tight control over his emotions. Would he need to express emotion in order to perform powerful magic? I'm having a difficult time putting this into words, but I also feel this idea ties in with the idea that Snape will need to release his good emotions (most notably, love) in order to complete his redemption. Is this idea crazy? (It's definitely half-baked! )
No, I don't think it's crazy. I agree with you: Harry seems to be at his most powerful when he is very emotional. Not only with wandless magic, but with wand-magic as well: A good example is the graveyard scene, when his parents come out of Voldemort's wand. The sight of them makes him even more emotional than he already is, and it gives him strength to win the fight of wills against Voldemort.

I want to tie this to the quote that Subtle just provided about the jar of cockroaches:
"a jar of cockroaches exploded over his head." (pp. 649-650)

The first time I read this, I thought Snape had made the jar explode out fo sheer anger, I mean by wandless magic, just as when Harry makes Aunt Marge's glass explode. But in the next chapter, it says that Harry didn't blame Snape for throwing a jar at him - I think the words are "having a jar thown at him", so he must have thrown it after all.

severa78
May 13th, 2005, 1:42 pm
RemusLupinFan and silver ink pot--I agree: it's not quite revenge he wants on Dumbledore, but a kind of vindication...but more than that, because he does seem to want Dumbledore to have to eat a bit of crow over this and to recognize that he is the 'good son.' It also, then, seems to me to lead directly to his outing of Lupin, since he doesn't get that satisfaction at all from Dumbledore; since Dumbledore won't do it, Snape takes care of the situation himself (he already is on the outs with 'Dad'; he may as well earn it, and do what he knows is 'right,' since Dad can't see it--maybe he'll appreciate it someday).I agree with all of you. Severus is quite looking for appreciation (the opposite of the spoiled brat), and he can sometimes do things to protect "father" as a manifestation of deep affection..
The idea of the emotion behind the magic is interesting. Harry doesn't have the proper kind of anger and hate to produce Cruciatus effectively, but he can throw off Voldemort with love....Dumbledore could produce effective Dark curses, apparently, but elects not to....Snape, it seems, can slash James' face with the use of a wand, but no incantation....I'd go with Mcpherson on thisGoing back to Severus and his emotions, I think that the amazing ability to control emotions is a great help when doing wandless magic--Harry would have been a very good wizard if he had managed to concentrate and to steer, to vent his emotions in such a way that could boost his magic. Since Snape knows how to do this, he manages wandless magic.If we think about it, the emotion only needs to be inside the wizard, and controlled so as to be focused toward the object of the spell/curse/hex. Even DD shows an aura of power when he's really strong that is a kind of emotion overflowing. Snape is simply not leaking emotion most of the time, taking 100% advantage of it. Harry probably still leaks too much emotion that would make him more powerful if correctly focused instead of being wasted outside. A bit difficult to discuss, I would need images to explain myself better.
Anybody want to make anything of the fact that he does choose physical violence against Harry in the Pensieve aftermath, instead of a magical assault? Physical assault is exactly the opposite of a magical assault. Continuing from what I tried to express above, a magical assault is the more efficient the more you can focus emotion. At that point Snape is out of control, so his magical assault wouldn't be much efficient, he might be unable to master an appropriate hex.

ETA: Norbertha, I'll be late at the party, but thanks for the invitation!

clkginny
May 13th, 2005, 1:57 pm
I don't know. Would you say that sentence differently if it was thrown with magic? Levitated just doesn't seem to have the same force behind it. If he did do it with magic, I doubt it was with a wand. I think if Snape had had a wand in that scene, Harry would've been in a real bad situation. (Not that I'm sure Snape would have used it on a student, but because wizards have a hard time controlling their magic when they're mad.

About the pensieve, I have never understood how anybody thinks it was a set up. Because we see Snape putting his memories in there? If I put my earrings in my jewelry box in front of a teenager, I should expect that they will take them out and look at them if I leave the room? If I trust the teenager enough to let them see what I'm doing, then I am trusting them to not use the information. Snape showed that he trusted Harry because he used the pensieve in front of him. (At least, trusted Harry not to violate Snape's privacy) Snape is in a position in Occlumency to find out how many of the things Harry has been accussed of are actually true. Yet, the entire time, Snape doesn't ask questions that Harry wouldv'e had to lie about or get in trouble over (seeing Hermione the cat in the infirmary, aftermath of stolen polyjuice ingredients). If Snape had intended to turn Occlumency into a disaster, he would have questioned Harry on these events. Harry needed to keep his mind clear and his emotions in check. I wonder what Dumbledore would've thought had Snape left SWM in his head, and Harry chanced upon it while performing Ligilimency? Somehow, I think Dumbledore would have been disappointed in Snape.

ETA: good points everybody

silver ink pot
May 13th, 2005, 2:22 pm
Interesting Updates on the Official Site - Enjoy!:

Rumor about Snape's, um, family life (if he has a family life, lol)
http://www.jkrowling.com/textonly/rumours_view.cfm?id=35

FAQ - Pureblood Families
http://www.jkrowling.com/textonly/faq_view.cfm?id=100

FAQ - Prongs insult to Snape on Marauder's Map
http://www.jkrowling.com/textonly/faq_view.cfm?id=103

FAQ - Veritaserum
http://www.jkrowling.com/textonly/faq_view.cfm?id=105
(Interesting point about Occlumency here)

severa78
May 13th, 2005, 2:44 pm
FAQ - Veritaserum
http://www.jkrowling.com/textonly/faq_view.cfm?id=105
(Interesting point about Occlumency here)
I did read it his morning, and at first I dismissed it as stuff we already figured out. But then I thought Veritaserum and Legilimency basically work on the same principles, if they can both be countered with Occlumency. That made me go back to Snape's threat of using Veritaserum on Harry. Was he testing Harry's ability at Occlumency, having heard about his ability against the Imperius Curse, one year in advance?

clkginny
May 13th, 2005, 3:12 pm
Interesting Updates on the Official Site - Enjoy!:

Rumor about Snape's, um, family life (if he has a family life, lol)
http://www.jkrowling.com/textonly/rumours_view.cfm?id=35

FAQ - Pureblood Families
http://www.jkrowling.com/textonly/faq_view.cfm?id=100

FAQ - Prongs insult to Snape on Marauder's Map
http://www.jkrowling.com/textonly/faq_view.cfm?id=103

FAQ - Veritaserum
http://www.jkrowling.com/textonly/faq_view.cfm?id=105
(Interesting point about Occlumency here)
What I found interesting about these, exiciting even, is they all seem to touch on Snape in some way. Does that mean that we will be getting some long awaited information about Snape? Or is this a teaser to hold us off until the last book?

Severa78, I really don't think that Snape had Harry's best interests at heart during that scene. I thought he seemed fairly upset, for Snape, that is. Then again, he does fly under the radar with helping Harry, at times. But the impression I got from that is the Wizard needs to not only expect the use of Veritaserum, but have the knowledge on how to counteract it.

silver ink pot
May 13th, 2005, 3:24 pm
ClkGinny: It is fascinating that Snape figures in to so much speculation.

It's a little embarassing for me today, because I have Luna on my avatar and a picture of Snape on my signature. I started using Luna because I had been accused of not reading the books correctly, so I decided, what the heck, Luna is reading upside down just like me, lol. I already had the Snape picture, and I just kept it. Maybe I'll go back to my Egyptian vulture crown avatar, lol. :p

I've certainly never seen a thread about Luna being Snape's daughter, so I wonder where JKR has seen that theory to dispell it? Maybe on another forum? :huh:

I'm hoping that in mentioning the Marauder's Map and Snape, JKR is hinting that we will learn more about that whole era. Also, she may be trying to squash more rumors that James is still alive.

Norbertha
May 13th, 2005, 3:28 pm
Luna is Snape's daughter
This is a most tantalising idea, but no, Mr. Lovegood, the editor of 'the Quibbler', really is Luna's father and Snape does not have a daughter.



He could still have a son, though! :p She didn't say he doesn't have children.

clkginny
May 13th, 2005, 3:33 pm
SIP I love your Snape signature, and Luna is cool. It's funny, when I read that you where the first thing I thought of, but not because I thought you prescribed to that theory.

I thought that JK had already killed the "James is still alive...somewhere" idea? Or was that just "James is Lupin" idea?

Oops, OT!

Um...yeah, Snape in those subjects, it really has my fingers crossed (and it's hard to type that way :-) ), that we will see more information forthcoming on that whole subject.

Norbertha, I could see a child, if JK wants to take it that way, but after that whole "Ewww" quote (that I referenced before), I have trouble seeing her writing him in a wife.

ArsTempus
May 13th, 2005, 3:48 pm
I don't know. Would you say that sentence differently if it was thrown with magic? Levitated just doesn't seem to have the same force behind it. If he did do it with magic, I doubt it was with a wand. I think if Snape had had a wand in that scene, Harry would've been in a real bad situation. (Not that I'm sure Snape would have used it on a student, but because wizards have a hard time controlling their magic when they're mad.

About the pensieve, I have never understood how anybody thinks it was a set up. Because we see Snape putting his memories in there? If I put my earrings in my jewelry box in front of a teenager, I should expect that they will take them out and look at them if I leave the room? If I trust the teenager enough to let them see what I'm doing, then I am trusting them to not use the information. Snape showed that he trusted Harry because he used the pensieve in front of him. (At least, trusted Harry not to violate Snape's privacy) Snape is in a position in Occlumency to find out how many of the things Harry has been accussed of are actually true. Yet, the entire time, Snape doesn't ask questions that Harry wouldv'e had to lie about or get in trouble over (seeing Hermione the cat in the infirmary, aftermath of stolen polyjuice ingredients). If Snape had intended to turn Occlumency into a disaster, he would have questioned Harry on these events. Harry needed to keep his mind clear and his emotions in check. I wonder what Dumbledore would've thought had Snape left SWM in his head, and Harry chanced upon it while performing Ligilimency? Somehow, I think Dumbledore would have been disappointed in Snape.

ETA: good points everybody

I would liken the pensieve to a diary in some ways, without the ability to lock it away. Having left Harry in a room with it once, Snape may have felt he could do so again; or in the heat of an emergency, securing it may not have been something he stopped to consider. It does not seem deliberate that Snape left that memory for Harry to see. Given that several memories were stored in the pensieve, how could Snape be sure Harry would even pick that one? And, if it were deliberate, perhaps Snape would have waited until the scene was complete before pulling Harry out of the basin.

As for physical violence instead of magic, it was probably physical proximity and loss of temper that caused that. Magical violence would have probably required more concentration, more focused energy, which Snape was undoubtedly incapable of at that time. He didn't use physical violence in PoA because, while he was angry, his emotions were more in control and he was dealing with adults, although with a large helping of youthful resentment.

As for SWM being that, it was probably a turning point for him, a fulcrum which may have had more significance to him than some of his activities after that. I can only speculate on its significance, and many others have already done so, but I think it was the tiny acorn out of which a mighty oak grew, or the last straw, or something.

As for it not being a really big, Death-Eating memory ... maybe Snape felt he could suppress the other memories, but has not been able to deal with this one and thus removed it to the pensieve. Harry was not able to glimpse those memories when he broke into Snape's mind. He was only able to see the more character-building memories.

Maybe the pensieve memories were ones that had some personal connection to Harry and would have been inappropriate for Harry to see (and not necessarily set up for him to see).

Finally, inserting personal experience here (argh), big memories are not always "big". My grandmother lived with my family for a few years, and my memories of her are a few snippets of conversation and some visual impressions. The big event of her death I can barely remember. The point is that memory works in strange ways, and what one person might expect to be the worst may not be to the rememberer.

And then there is suppression of memory. If I had a Death-Eating memory, I would probably not try to dwell on it, in order to get on with my life. It might not be my worst memory. Those might be the turning point ones where I felt I should have gone one way and went the other.

Hope I'm making sense.

silver ink pot
May 13th, 2005, 4:01 pm
He could still have a son, though! :p She didn't say he doesn't have children.

:evil: I'm so glad you wrote that, because I stopped myself. hehe

Why didn't she say, "Snape has no children at all." That would have ended all the speculation once and for all.

I just don't see why Snape couldn't have children, since people much more horrible have had families. Malfoy and Narcissa (ewwwww), Crabbe (ewwwww), Goyle (ewwwww), and the "extremely old" Nott (ewwwwwwww, double ewwwwwwww).

You know what I just realized? She never said that Luna wasn't related to Snape, just that she isn't his daughter, lol. :tu:

RemusLupinFan
May 13th, 2005, 5:06 pm
That is a good observation CLK. He does seem to come in at at point where it looks like Harry is the bad guy. We know that Harry is reacting to Draco, but to Snape, it would appear that Harry is just James reincarnated. And we all know how Snape feels about James. James was a bully, and Harry is a bully. Snape must feel some sense of "turnabout is fairplay" now that he is in a position of authority and can punish Harry. I wonder if he imagines that it's James? Takes great pleasure from it? It would seem so.Yes, this is a good point. It makes sense that Snape or any teacher would come into the middle of the fight anyway, so it makes sense that Snape could have gotten the wrong impression about Harry. Though I also think that Snape knows what kind of person Draco is, so I wonder if deep down, Snape knows that Draco is more likely to be the aggressor than Harry.

The reason I brought the quote here is because Snape has such tight control over his emotions. Would he need to express emotion in order to perform powerful magic? I'm having a difficult time putting this into words, but I also feel this idea ties in with the idea that Snape will need to release his good emotions (most notably, love) in order to complete his redemption. Is this idea crazy?This is a very interesting idea which I think does have merit. I agree with Mcpherson that you don’t necessarily have to show your emotions to be a very powerful wizard- you just have to have these strong feelings. If I remember correctly, when Harry was being possessed in the DoM, he didn’t really show on the outside that he was feeling strong emotions, we are just told what he is feeling on the inside.

Snape wants to be seen metaphorically as "the good son," and gain Dumbledore's appreciation.

I think Snape realizes, too, that the students like Lupin, and probably the other teachers like Lupin, too. Remember Trelawney at Christmas dinner, looking around for Lupin? ;) Most people who aren't well-liked sometimes envy those who are considered "nice" or "pleasant." Although Snape does nothing to make himself popular, I believe he still values that trait.I think that metaphor is very apt, and I agree that Snape probably does envy the fact that Lupin is so well-liked. I don’t think he envies Lupin’s popularity because he himself is not popular. If that were true, I’m sure he’d try to make himself more likable. Rather, I think his envy of Lupin stems from the fact that he believes Lupin to be untrustworthy and knowns he's hiding a secret (his lycanthropy), but still people like him. Since Snape is also viewed as being untrustworthy by many (and his behavior often does nothing to contradict it), but people don’t like him or give him a second chance despite the fact that Dumbledore trusts him. I think he might be a bit envious of the fact that Dumbledore shows trust in both he and Lupin, but people only acknowledge Dumbledore’s trust in Lupin and often don’t quite believe Dumbledore when it comes to Snape.

Anybody want to make anything of the fact that he does choose physical violence against Harry in the Pensieve aftermath, instead of a magical assault?The only think I can make of this is what you said subtle- that this shows Snape was pushed beyond his anger limit. As others have said, using physical violence is more effective and gives you physical contact as opposed to just zapping someone with your wand. So this shows how out of control Snape was that he just grabbed Harry- I believe he was shaking with anger at the moment. I think it was more satisfying for Snape to get a phyisical with Harry; the throwing of the cockroach jar goes along with this.

He didn't use physical violence in PoA because, while he was angry, his emotions were more in control and he was dealing with adults, although with a large helping of youthful resentment.Another reason for not using physical violence in SWM is because it wouldn’t have been very prudent. He was outnumbered for one thing, and in a situation when your opponents are armed with their wands, it’s probably better to try to fight them off with your wand than to try to fight them physically. With Harry, they were in a one-on-one situation in close proximity to one another, which kind of fostered the use of physical violence. Otherwise, Snape would have had to reach for his wand and such.

By the way SIP, thanks for posting those links. :)

ArsTempus
May 13th, 2005, 6:07 pm
I have been thinking about the memories Harry did manage to glean from Snape's mind during their Occlumency lessons. They seem to be of the nature of unconscious memories, things a therapist might have to work years to get at, things that Snape might not even be aware of ... yet were they at the surface of his mind or buried somewhere deeper? Snape was able to read a wider variety of impressions from Harry, but still many presumably suppressed memories. This makes me wonder about the accuracy or true use of Occlumency.

I've also been thinking more about SWM. This seems of the nature of an unresolved conflict of which Snape is excruciatingly aware, an instance of where he crossed a line (calling Lily a Mudblood, I am speculating) or cannot reconcile his actions with his expectations of himself (being able to defend himself, I am speculating). The failure to come to terms with the memory, or regret stemming from it, may be what caused him to put it into the pensieve. He may have come to terms with other memories (activities as a Death Eater) as part of a larger justification of actions during wartime, countered somewhat by his actions on behalf of the Order.

clkginny's observation that Harry's dip into the pensieve was an invasion of privacy is also very apt. I see the Occlumency lessons as a tremendous missed opportunity for Snape and Harry to come to a grudging acceptance of each other, had Snape been aware that he needed to explain more of the process, and Harry been able to prepare more and not succumb to the temptation to invade Snape's private thoughts.

Tonksaholic
May 13th, 2005, 6:23 pm
There are obviously many of times that Snape is mad with Dumbledore, we know that the last thing that Snape wants is to look a fool and he has done that to his self a few times with his petty opproach to Harry because of how James was to him. Do you think though that he would ever be so mad with DD that he betrays him?

I can't see this ever happening because Snape owes DD so much. We learn in GoF in the Penesieve episode in DD's office that DD testified that Snape had turned his back on LV and had become a spy for the Order.

ETA: RLFan, I just saw your post. It made me think that perhaps part of the problem with Snape and Harry, is that many of the Draco/Harry confrontations have been walked in on at a point in which it appears that Harry is the agressor. Perhaps part of Snape's opinion that Harry is just like his father is that from Snape's POV, Harry is bullying Draco. Anyway, just a thought, I haven't had time to consider it thoroughly yet.
I never noticed this, but Snape does always arrive just after Malfoy has provoked Harry and just as Harry is retaliating, making Harry appear to be very abrupt and violent just like his father. This is very clever writing on JKR's part as it makes us view Snape as very unfair whenin actuality he is only responding to the evidence before him. (Stops in wonder and awe at JKR's writing ability)

They seem to be of the nature of unconscious memories, things a therapist might have to work years to get at, things that Snape might not even be aware of ... yet were they at the surface of his mind or buried somewhere deeper?

I think the memories were buried very deep as Snape seems almost shocked that Harry had managed to delve that far into his memories. Yet another invasion of his privacy by Harry.

You guys post at a rate of knots. I don't come on for one evening and i have to read 3pages of posts. :tu:

Potions Mistres
May 13th, 2005, 6:28 pm
Great posts! I do agree that SWM was most likely not a set-up, but rather a mistake on Snape's part (leaving the Pensieve unattended) and Harry's (going into the Pensieve). I also think that Snape used physical, as opposed to magical violence against Harry out of sheer fury. His emotions didn't allow him the opportunity to use his wand and hex Harry; he lost it and in the heat of the moment, physically assaulted Harry.

On another subject, while I was watching Cold Cases on A&E last night, I saw an interesting parallel between the Death Eaters and the Ku Klux Klan (a white supremacist group). Both have the agenda of a "pure" nation of Aryans/pure-bloods. Physically, both groups wear masks, making it almost impossible to identify who everyone was. Also, (especially during the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s), the KKK employed intimidation and even murder to make sure that their views were not only made clear, but with the goal of seeing a "pure" nation come to fruition.

However, some KKK members turned against the group, unable and/or unwilling to partake in murder and violence. They worked with law enforcement, putting themselves and their families at risk of said violence from vindictive Klansmen. Does anybody beside me see a parallel with Snape as a spy, working for Dumbledore against Lord Voldemort? (I should note that this view assumes Snape is on the side of good.)

silver ink pot
May 13th, 2005, 6:35 pm
Yes, this is a good point. It makes sense that Snape or any teacher would come into the middle of the fight anyway, so it makes sense that Snape could have gotten the wrong impression about Harry. Though I also think that Snape knows what kind of person Draco is, so I wonder if deep down, Snape knows that Draco is more likely to be the aggressor than Harry.

I think Snape is putting on a show for Draco, Crabbe, and Goyle. If he always favors his own house, then the kids won't have a clue that he might be on Harry's side. You know, if I were in Snape's shoes, and had been through all that he has with the DEs, I would pity Draco, Crabbe, and Goyle. They are seemingly following in their father's footsteps and will probably be Jr. DEs under the control of Voldemort in a few years. Favoring them in school won't really give them any edge in life if they grow up to be criminals. Letting them have an extra hour on the Quidditch field now won't keep them from getting the Cruciatus Curse from Voldemort if they fail in a task.

I think Snape has a sort of insurance from being a teacher and Head of Slytherin. Look at all the Slytherin students he has "favored" over the years! If it is discovered that he is in the Order, and Voldemort tells all these ex-students to hunt him down, will they really want to kill a teacher who has treated them so well? They wouldn't, anymore than Harry would kill Lupin or McGonagall. Snape mentioned "job references" in Umbridge's office. He has helped a whole generation of Slytherins go on with their education or find a job. Are all of them going to forget that, if he is called a traitor by someone like Bella Lestrange?


I I agree that Snape probably does envy the fact that Lupin is so well-liked. I don’t think he envies Lupin’s popularity because he himself is not popular. If that were true, I’m sure he’d try to make himself more likable. Rather, I think his envy of Lupin stems from the fact that he believes Lupin to be untrustworthy and knowns he's hiding a secret (his lycanthropy), but still people like him. Since Snape is also viewed as being untrustworthy by many (and his behavior often does nothing to contradict it), but people don’t like him or give him a second chance despite the fact that Dumbledore trusts him. I think he might be a bit envious of the fact that Dumbledore shows trust in both he and Lupin, but people only acknowledge Dumbledore’s trust in Lupin and often don’t quite believe Dumbledore when it comes to Snape.

I think he may consider Lupin a hypocrite, but for most of PoA he can't prove anything and that is why he is frustrated. It is hard to watch someone you consider a dishonest hypocrite get praise from your colleagues - we've all been there, and felt that way.

By the way SIP, thanks for posting those links. :)

:) Your welcome!

Alisel
May 13th, 2005, 7:21 pm
Thanks for the links, SIP.

Yes, interesting that so much of that information has already been discussed here. Why does she always have to be so evasive? Snape's not Muggleborn, he doesn't have a daughter (and yes, I agree; we've seen worse parents in the books already). Actually, I thought Luna was generally believed to be Lupin's daughter, not Snape's. Not that I believe that either, but I'm pretty sure it has a larger following than the other one.

I like the idea about Snape's influence with the Slytherins, SIP. :tu: I'm not sure I agree with what you said about them not killing him any more than Harry would kill Lupin. After all, the main reason for that would be that Harry's Harry, rather than anything to do with what Lupin has done for him, and I doubt all the Slytherins would have similar scruples. However, I can definitely see it giving Snape an advantage.

I wish I could add something interesting to the discussion, but I think I've got about 20 pages of this thread to catch up on before finding out what you're discussing right now, so I'd better wait.

silver ink pot
May 13th, 2005, 7:28 pm
Thanks for the links, SIP.

Yes, interesting that so much of that information has already been discussed here. Why does she always have to be so evasive? Snape's not Muggleborn, he doesn't have a daughter (and yes, I agree; we've seen worse parents in the books already). Actually, I thought Luna was generally believed to be Lupin's daughter, not Snape's. Not that I believe that either, but I'm pretty sure it has a larger following than the other one.

Yes, the only theory I've seen about Luna is that she is Lupin's daughter, since there is the "moon" connection and Peeves shouts "Looney Lupin" at him in Book 3. To me those clues are almost too obvious, but we'll have to see.

I like the idea about Snape's influence with the Slytherins, SIP. :tu: I'm not sure I agree with what you said about them not killing him any more than Harry would kill Lupin. After all, the main reason for that would be that Harry's Harry, rather than anything to do with what Lupin has done for him, and I doubt all the Slytherins would have similar scruples. However, I can definitely see it giving Snape an advantage.

:tu: That's a good point about Harry's scruples saving him from being a murderer, wheras the Slytherins would see it as a way to get points with Voldemort.

I wish I could add something interesting to the discussion, but I think I've got about 20 pages of this thread to catch up on before finding out what you're discussing right now, so I'd better wait.

Just don't read it, LOL! :rotfl: We've probably changed the subject 25 times anyway, lol.

Alisel
May 13th, 2005, 8:33 pm
Only 25 times? :p I'll be all right then. ;) But how can I not read it? I'd miss all the good stuff.

Okay, I'm a little further now. I loved the "fire" idea, and how it ties into Snape being emotional, rather than the opposite as he would like others to believe.

Emotion as the "power" behind magic? It looks that way with Harry, but is there anything to indicate that it works that way for others? I mean, we're told that certain spells, such as Cruciatus and the patronus charm, requires specific emotions to work, but apart from that?

Physical rather than magical assault: Even under somewhat different circumstances I think a magical attack would have been out of character. It works very well in SWM, where there is no other way to get to James, but from what we've seen of Snape, I think it would be odd for him to resort to "foolish wand-waving" in a situation where there was a viable Muggle alternative.

RemusLupinFan
May 13th, 2005, 8:57 pm
Does anybody beside me see a parallel with Snape as a spy, working for Dumbledore against Lord Voldemort? (I should note that this view assumes Snape is on the side of good.) :tu: This is a very good parallel. I think it fits very well with the idea that Snape was forced to do things as a Death Eater that he found to be morally distasteful, and thus he sought to get out of this group. The parallel does work even further, as you pointed out, with Snape not just leaving the Death Eaters, but actively trying to go against them (without their knowledge of course) and placing himself in great personal danger.

ArsTempus
May 13th, 2005, 8:59 pm
Physical rather than magical assault: Even under somewhat different circumstances I think a magical attack would have been out of character. It works very well in SWM, where there is no other way to get to James, but from what we've seen of Snape, I think it would be odd for him to resort to "foolish wand-waving" in a situation where there was a viable Muggle alternative.

Didn't he physically pull Harry out of the pensieve? (I do not have the book with me, sorry.) Therefore, physical contact was already established, along with rage at what was being seen. The physical situation escalated from that contact. Snape actually broke off physical contact fairly quickly (again from memory) by pushing Harry away -- it could have been worse.

Tonksaholic
May 13th, 2005, 9:27 pm
Emotion as the "power" behind magic? It looks that way with Harry, but is there anything to indicate that it works that way for others? I mean, we're told that certain spells, such as Cruciatus and the patronus charm, requires specific emotions to work, but apart from that?
Dosn't Dumbledore use magic without a wand, when he knocks down Fudge and Kingsley etc in his office in OotP. It may not have been due to emotions but as he was being removed fr0m the post he had held dearly for many years, even valueing it above "Ministerdom", I am sure that he was feeling emotionally charged. Or was it because Dumbledore is so powerful anyway that he doesn't need a wand for such simple spells??

subtle science
May 13th, 2005, 10:29 pm
After Harry's Pensieve dive, Snape doesn't merely push Harry away--he "threw Harry from him with all his might" (p. 649, US hardcover). And Harry beats a hasty retreat.

A great example of Snape's showing up in the middle of a Draco/Harry go-around is in GoF: Malfoy's got the "Potter Stinks" badges and calls Hermione a Mudblood again; Harry goes for his wand first. The each cast spells, which hit Goyle and Hermione--Goyle is covered with boils; Hermione's teeth grow...and Snape walks in:

"And what is all this noise about?" said a soft, deadly voice.
Snape had arrived. The Slytherins clamored to give their explanations; Snape pointed along yellow finger at Malfoy and said, "Explain."
"Potter attacked me, sir--"
"We attacked each other at the same time!" Harry shouted.
"--and he hit Goyle--look--"
Snape examined Goyle, whose face now resembled something that would have been at home in a book on poisonous fungi.
"Hospital wing, Goyle," said Snape calmly.
"Malfoy got Hermione!" Ron said. "Look!"....
Snape looked coldly at Hermione, then said, "I see no difference" (pp. 299-300, GoF, US paper).

It's a classic case: the fight is already in progress when he steps in; of course, each side says the other started it. Snape perhaps favors the Slytherins by asking Malfoy to explain, but we know he doesn't trust Harry, anyway. He tells Goyle to get treatment--calmly--and then he insults Hermione. Again, he can't sympathize with Harry and Company, even if he were suddenly so inclined: he's surrounded by members of his House: the image of Snape's hating Gryffindors and especially the Trio must be maintained...and it's not likely it's all that much of a stretch, anyway, since he can't stand them....

silver ink pot--Thanks for the links. Yes--I, too, immediately thought: he doesn't have a daughter. JKR can make you paranoid, can't she?!
The information about Veritaserum and Occlumency was very interesting, though--as well as her characterization of Crouch Senior.

ArsTempus
May 13th, 2005, 10:50 pm
After Harry's Pensieve dive, Snape doesn't merely push Harry away--he "threw Harry from him with all his might" (p. 649, US hardcover). And Harry beats a hasty retreat.



Thanks for the clarification. Of course, this is from Harry's POV. Does he really know what "all his might" is? Even by throwing Harry away forcefully, I wonder if Snape manages to regain self-control of a kind.

subtle science
May 13th, 2005, 10:59 pm
Y'know--I had a hunch I should have just quoted the whole section, but I figured I was going to plague everyone with the long bit about Snape's walking in on a Draco/Harry fight....

Anyway. When Snape throws Harry, he means it; the next sentence is:

Harry fell hard onto the dungeon floor.
"You will not repeat what you saw to anyone!" Snape bellowed.
"No," said Harry, getting to his feet as far from Snape as he could. "No, of course I w--"
"Get out, get out, I don't want to see you in this office ever again!" (pp. 649-650).

RemusLupinFan
May 13th, 2005, 11:11 pm
It's a classic case: the fight is already in progress when he steps in; of course, each side says the other started it. Snape perhaps favors the Slytherins by asking Malfoy to explain, but we know he doesn't trust Harry, anyway. He tells Goyle to get treatment--calmly--and then he insults Hermione. Again, he can't sympathize with Harry and Company, even if he were suddenly so inclined: he's surrounded by members of his House: the image of Snape's hating Gryffindors and especially the Trio must be maintained...and it's not likely it's all that much of a stretch, anyway, since he can't stand them....In a way, it's lucky for Snape that he has to put on a show in front of the Slytherins: it's a win-win situation for him, actually. The fact that he doesn't trust and quite dislikes Harry allows him to give the Slytherins the advantage with no problem, because he knows it will upset Harry. Giving the Slytherins the advantage not only goes along with his personal desires to see Harry and co. be disadvantaged, but it also plays right into the hand of puttting on airs for the Death Eaters. By playing favorites with the Slytherins, this will ensure that many these kids will give their Death Eater parents favorable reports about their potions master, who then continue to believe that Snape is on their side.

Chievrefueil
May 13th, 2005, 11:27 pm
I had a longer response, but lost it. :(

The main point was about Snape using physical violence, rather than magic, after the Pensieve incident. I agree with everyone who felt it had to do with his degree of anger. I think he is so angry, he isn't thinking and is only reacting. When people do this, they often revert to base instincts or very early (childhood) behavior. Snape might not use magic because using magic was not his usual instinct or habit as a child. For example, when I'm very angry, I revert to speaking with the poor grammar used in the neighborhood in which I grew up. A few years ago, I was very excited about something and called my brother "Tommy" instead of "Tom." Before that, it must have been 15 years since I'd called him "Tommy."

shadowdogs
May 14th, 2005, 12:40 am
Hello... don't let my registration date fool you; I promise I did my homework on version 2 of this thread :)

Let me run this up the flagpole while we're on (or near) the topic of SWM:

In terms of Snape's mysterious undercurrents of emotion, is he afraid of Harry?

There are two things that happened in the development of the DEs that made Snape realize what a Big Mistake he's made joining up: the transition to the Nazi-like agenda, and the moment LV first made it clear that his orders were to be followed on pain of death. At that point, what is he but a slave to a cause he doesn't even believe in? Yet he stayed, for an unspecified time, commiting as yet nameless crimes, out of fear.

Not to say that Dumbledore thinks that Snape is able to totally put all this behind him, but I think DD is too reliant on his own acceptance of Snape's past. I don't think Snape views that matter as resolved AT ALL.

Any one intrepid or heroic action of his is fine, but collectively, I think he is too reckless with his own safety. I think he views his views his tenure with the DEs as an act of unforgivable cowardice, and that, while acting out of very real loyalty to DD and the Order, there's an undercurrent of desire to prove to himself that he isn't that guy anymore.

His relationship of extreme antagonism and competition with James is tied to this. When the chips were down in the first war, and wizards were taking sides, James made the right choice and died for it, whereas Snape made the wrong choice and lived, cheating death, but never escaping his terrible past. So, he goes about life with Dumbledore's confidence, being fundamentally good (while superficially bad), wandering the halls at night, wondering when someone is finally going to turn to him and shout "Fraud!"

I think Snape views Harry as not only a copy of James' personality, but also the power Snape has given James'/Lilys' memories to judge him. This would do more to explain the extremity of his response to Harry than mere similarities between Harry and James, especially in the context of the Penseive incident, where he goes utterly to pieces -- physically violent, will not look at Harry for rest of term, disobeys DD -- very very out of character.

Harry seeing him at a low point (SWM) and having the power to use it against him are nothing new (dark mark). Nor is his disobedience (countless shocking incidents). I think Snape fell apart just seeing Harry face down in that bowl, imagining the boy who lived turning on him and saying, "I've seen it! You're vile and disgusting and you haven't changes ONE BIT!" I bet this is something he's said to himself, but I think he's worried that if Harry says it, it will be true.

... hopefully I'm entertaining someone as much as you all have been educating me :)

clkginny
May 14th, 2005, 1:46 am
Welcome, Shadowdogs. Nice first post!

Oy, I'm the only one who thinks it is possible that Snape moved the jar via magic? Okay, going along with what Chiev said, this is a wizard, after all. During the GoF QWC scene (wasn't that mentioned in JK's site this morning?), wizard children are using magic before they can formulate "complete" sentences. (the boy with the slug) They also seem to use magic when under emotional/physical duress, (Harry ending up on the roof of the school). The automatic emotional/stressed response of Snape might have been a magical one. I'm not saying that he didn't throw the jar, merely that I think it is just as possible that he inadvertently used magic.

Anyway, as you all disagree, I wanted to defend my point so that you all wouldn't think I'd lost my mind.

subtle science
May 14th, 2005, 2:25 am
Welcome, Shadowdogs! Interesting ideas.

I think that Harry is a reminder of Snape's failure to save James and Lily (since I adhere to the notion that the spy who gave Dumbledore the information was Snape), in addition to being an apparent photocopy of the person Snape most loathed. I don't think he fears Harry--I do think he resents Harry's being famous for 'nothing,' while Snape's effort to save his parents came to nothing. The only time I think he fears Harry is after the Pensieve dive, and the fear is that Harry will spread the word of what he's seen throughout the school.

clkginny--I'm not entirely convinced Snape didn't use magic--Harry says that the jar was thrown at him, but his back was to Snape. Then again, I rather like the mental image of Snape delivering a fastball. I love being wishy-washy!

Chievrefueil--That was rather my take on the scene. Does Snape's use of physical violence instead of magic then reflect his upbringing? Does it connect to the memory of the arguing parents--was physical rather than magical violence the response in the Snape household?

RemusLupinFan--Also exactly what I was thinking: Snape gets a bonus--he can maintain his DE persona in front of the DE's kids, but still indulge himself in some abuse of the Trio. Really--makes it a banner day for Snape; worth getting out of bed for! : )

silver ink pot
May 14th, 2005, 3:34 am
Welcome, Shadowdogs. Nice first post!

Oy, I'm the only one who thinks it is possible that Snape moved the jar via magic? Okay, going along with what Chiev said, this is a wizard, after all. During the GoF QWC scene (wasn't that mentioned in JK's site this morning?), wizard children are using magic before they can formulate "complete" sentences. (the boy with the slug) They also seem to use magic when under emotional/physical duress, (Harry ending up on the roof of the school). The automatic emotional/stressed response of Snape might have been a magical one. I'm not saying that he didn't throw the jar, merely that I think it is just as possible that he inadvertently used magic.

Anyway, as you all disagree, I wanted to defend my point so that you all wouldn't think I'd lost my mind.

Raising my hand here. :blush: I think the jar flew through the air by magic, but that Snape stopped it with magic, too, which is why it it shattered over Harry's head. He keeps it from hitting Harry at the last minute. That is always my perception when I read that scene.

Welcome to you, Shadowdogs! I like your ideas on Snape! :tu:
http://bestsmileys.com/welcome/17.gif

vickilind
May 14th, 2005, 5:02 am
subtle science

Anybody want to make anything of the fact that he does choose physical violence against Harry in the Pensieve aftermath, instead of a magical assault?
__________________________________________________ _____
When someone is that angry, so angry that they are shaking, not spewing like Snape was is PoA (there is a difference) you go with your base instincts. There was proximity and anger. There is a certain amount of satisfaction in using physical violence; you are able to release the anger and hurt the person who hurt you.


Didn't he physically pull Harry out of thepensieve? (I do not have the book with me, sorry.) Therefore, physical contact was already established, along with rage at what was being seen. The physical situation escalated from that contact. Snape actually broke off physical contact fairly quickly (again from memory) by pushing Harry away -- it could have been worse.

__________________________________________________ ________
I agree, ArsTempus. Since he had already physically pulled Harry from the pensieve, there is already that contact, so Snape went with it.


shadowdogs
First Year Join Date: 12th May 2005

Hello... don't let my registration date fool you; I promise I did my homework on version 2 of this thread

Let me run this up the flagpole while we're on (or near) the topic of SWM:

In terms of Snape's mysterious undercurrents of emotion, is he afraid of Harry?

There are two things that happened in the development of the DEs that made Snape realize what a Big Mistake he's made joining up: the transition to the Nazi-like agenda, and the moment LV first made it clear that his orders were to be followed on pain of death. At that point, what is he but a slave to a cause he doesn't even believe in? Yet he stayed, for an unspecified time, commiting as yet nameless crimes, out of fear.

Not to say that Dumbledore thinks that Snape is able to totally put all this behind him, but I think DD is too reliant on his own acceptance of Snape's past. I don't think Snape views that matter as resolved AT ALL.

Any one intrepid or heroic action of his is fine, but collectively, I think he is too reckless with his own safety. I think he views his views his tenure with the DEs as an act of unforgivable cowardice, and that, while acting out of very real loyalty to DD and the Order, there's an undercurrent of desire to prove to himself that he isn't that guy anymore.

His relationship of extreme antagonism and competition with James is tied to this. When the chips were down in the first war, and wizards were taking sides, James made the right choice and died for it, whereas Snape made the wrong choice and lived, cheating death, but never escaping his terrible past. So, he goes about life with Dumbledore's confidence, being fundamentally good (while superficially bad), wandering the halls at night, wondering when someone is finally going to turn to him and shout "Fraud!"

__________________________________________________ _______
What a great point of view! Snape may wonder if anyone is going to think him a fraud; he may be working so hard with DD and, now, the Order to try and free himself from the demons of his past.
__________________________________________________ ________

I think Snape views Harry as not only a copy of James' personality, but also the power Snape has given James'/Lilys' memories to judge him. This would do more to explain the extremity of his response to Harry than mere similarities between Harry and James, especially in the context of the Penseive incident, where he goes utterly to pieces -- physically violent, will not look at Harry for rest of term, disobeys DD -- very very out of character.

Harry seeing him at a low point (SWM) and having the power to use it against him are nothing new (dark mark). Nor is his disobedience (countless shocking incidents). I think Snape fell apart just seeing Harry face down in that bowl, imagining the boy who lived turning on him and saying, "I've seen it! You're vile and disgusting and you haven't changes ONE BIT!" I bet this is something he's said to himself, but I think he's worried that if Harry says it, it will be true.

... hopefully I'm entertaining someone as much as you all have been educating me
__________________________________________________ ________

Shadowdogs, it is obvious you've done your homework. Excellant post. Harry didn't see Snape as vile and disgusting, but Snape may very well think that of himself. I think Snape has demons we haven't begun to see....hopefully, in the last two books, we will. He has never gotten over the SWM and I think it may be because it was a turning point for him. (someone said something to that effect earlier in this thread?) Growing that kind of hatred can lead someone down the wrong path. LV is the kind of evil dictator to feed that anger and hurt, to his benefit. And once your in with LV, there's only one way out. Except for Snape, who is working against LV, as everyone says, at great personal risk.
Snape has seen what LV does to those who disobey or betray him. Whatever it was that turned Snape back to DD had to be big; he is in constant danger with every mission, and yet he still does it. Can you say "redemption"?

funnyhoney88
May 14th, 2005, 5:02 am
I used to see Snape as physically throwing the jar, but thinking about it more makes me think it was accidental magic. Randomly, an example of when good teachers go bad, my math teacher snapped the other day. Some guys have been annoying her the whole year, and this teacher has a short temper already, and she went a little kooky. She screamed "Shut up!" then moved this boy's desk a couple of feet-and he was no lightweight, and the teacher was sort of old and not too big. Then she pushed the overhead halfway across the room, and finally sent him and 3 other guys to the dean's office. She had a bit of a Snapeish moment. I found this sort of funny, as the only time I've ever seen a grown woman lose control like that is when my mother yells at me.

Anyway, the point of that was when you get really angry, you have a burst of energy. And for us (aka people without magic) we can realease some of that energy physically, some people throw desks. My conductor throws music stands. Whatever. For wizards and witches, I think that you would use up a lot of energy doing accidental magic. And, if Snape had been thinking rationally and had not let his emotions get the better of him, he would not have thrown Harry around, it was probably something of an automatic response, just like the jar breaking magically.

Also, this is from a couple of pages ago, I thought a pathetic fallacy was attributing human feelings to Nature, like the flowers breathe. And it was the author's attitude toward her subject, but I wouldn't really think of an empty fire place as a pathetic fallacy. Maybe a symbol, and a good one.

silver ink pot
May 14th, 2005, 5:56 am
Also, this is from a couple of pages ago, I thought a pathetic fallacy was attributing human feelings to Nature, like the flowers breathe. And it was the author's attitude toward her subject, but I wouldn't really think of an empty fire place as a pathetic fallacy. Maybe a symbol, and a good one.

I was thinking that too, since I think of the fireplace more as a metaphor than a pathetic fallacy. However the definition of the term actually includes anything, animal, vegetable, or mineral that a "feeling" can be projected upon:

http://www.calvertonschool.org/waldspurger/pages/glossary_of_literary_terms.htm

Pathetic Fallacy: A fallacy of reason in suggesting that nonhuman phenomena act from human feelings, as suggested by the word "pathetic" from the Greek pathos; a literary device wherein something nonhuman found in nature-a beast, plant, stream, natural force, etc.-performs as though from human feeling or motivation. In Jack London's To Build a Fire, "The cold of space," London writes, "smote the unprotected tip of the planet, . . ." The word "smote" suggests nature deliberately striking the northern tip of the earth with severe cold. The poetry of William Wordsworth is replete with instances of pathetic fallacy-weeping streams, etc.

So I think Snape's fireplace being "as cold as he is" could definitely be a pathetic fallacy, as well as the "deep dark dungeons" themselves.

My problem is that I don't see how this can be a fallacy, since all humans think this way, lol. In a way, the fallacy becomes our own truth everytime we are gloomy on a rainy day, or exhilarated on a "crisp fall day."

Vickilind: About the Quotes, have you tried this: Left click on the mouse and keep holding it down. Scan over the part that you have pasted into your post, then go up to the top of the text box and hit the little piece of paper with writing on the right. The "quote" code should appear around the part you have scanned. It will show up as a "code" in the box, but when you hit "Preview" it will appear as a quote. You can do this for other things as well. You can left-click, scan, and hit the "color" button up on top, scrolling down at the little arrow to find the color you want.

Or, if none of that works, then just type this before the first word of the paragraph you want to quote, but take out the asterik:

[*Quote]

Then type this after the last word or punctuation mark: [*/Quote]

If you leave out the asterick, it looks like this :)

Hope that helps!

Chievrefueil
May 14th, 2005, 7:29 am
My problem is that I don't see how this can be a fallacy, since all humans think this way, lol. In a way, the fallacy becomes our own truth everytime we are gloomy on a rainy day, or exhilarated on a "crisp fall day."This is off topic, but seems a good place to mark where I've read up to. :p

It's probably called a fallacy because something non-human (especially something non-sentient) can't really have any of the human characteristics being attributed to it. However, I would think that it's just a literary term that doesn't have any bad connotation, especially if it's a technique of obviously talented writers.

And, shadowdogs, great post! I enjoyed reading it. :tu:

funnyhoney88
May 14th, 2005, 7:34 am
SIP- We were just talking about this in class the other day, and my teacher mentioned that he wished the term wasn't called pathetic fallacy, since it had such a negative connontation. Apparently it was some British man who coined the phrase, I think, but it's not really a fallacy, because all humans project their feelings onto Nature, it's not limited to poets.

Haha, and yes this is on topic, because it helps to find more about Snape's personality!

atschpe
May 14th, 2005, 3:57 pm
It's a classic case: the fight is already in progress when he steps in; of course, each side says the other started it. Snape perhaps favors the Slytherins by asking Malfoy to explain, but we know he doesn't trust Harry, anyway. He tells Goyle to get treatment--calmly--and then he insults Hermione. Again, he can't sympathize with Harry and Company, even if he were suddenly so inclined: he's surrounded by members of his House: the image of Snape's hating Gryffindors and especially the Trio must be maintained...and it's not likely it's all that much of a stretch, anyway, since he can't stand them....
In a way, it's lucky for Snape that he has to put on a show in front of the Slytherins: it's a win-win situation for him, actually. The fact that he doesn't trust and quite dislikes Harry allows him to give the Slytherins the advantage with no problem, because he knows it will upset Harry. Giving the Slytherins the advantage not only goes along with his personal desires to see Harry and co. be disadvantaged, but it also plays right into the hand of puttting on airs for the Death Eaters. By playing favorites with the Slytherins, this will ensure that many these kids will give their Death Eater parents favorable reports about their potions master, who then continue to believe that Snape is on their side.

I completely agree. Snape can stay in character by "sympathizing" with his house members and turning a cold shoulder on Harry and his friends. I have been wondering though if there might be more to it; he forces Harry to swallow injustice. It reminds me a bit of how Harry is told to ignore the injustice coming from Umbridge in OotP. Is Snape trying to prepare him for this?
What do you think?

silver ink pot
May 14th, 2005, 4:21 pm
This is off topic, but seems a good place to mark where I've read up to. :p

It's probably called a fallacy because something non-human (especially something non-sentient) can't really have any of the human characteristics being attributed to it. However, I would think that it's just a literary term that doesn't have any bad connotation, especially if it's a technique of obviously talented writers.

You would think it would be a neutral term, since it is just describing a common idea in all literature and film. But it is taught as a "negative." I had professors who would talk about Wordsworth and other Romantic Poets as if they were "flawed" because they used the pathetic fallacy. Or maybe they don't realize that young, impressionable students take it as a negative. :tu:

I was looking up fire symbolism online, and it is amazing that fire can mean so many different things! It's probably a good idea to study this now and then we can pick out things when Book 6 comes out. I realize I sound just like Hermione, LOL. :p

http://www.dreammoods.com/dreamdictionary/f2.htm

Fireplace
To see a lit fireplace in your dream, symbolizes contentment, warmth, and comfort.

To dream of lighting or stirring a fireplace, suggests a burning a desire or your need to get to the heart of a matter/situation.

To see an unlit fireplace, is indicative of low energy, disinterest, or disheartenment.

http://www.geocities.com/hairybobby2000/dictionaryf.html

FIREPLACE domestic life


http://altreligion.about.com/library/glossary/symbols/bldefsfire.htm

The upward pointing triangle is the alchemical symbol for fire. One of the four alchemical elements, Fire has the properties hot and dry, and symbolizes emotions. In alchemical tradition, the elemental spirits of fire are Salamanders. The symbol is derived from the medieval magical Seal of Solomon -

http://altreligion.about.com/library/glossary/symbols/bldefshexagram.htm

. . . the hexagon is called the Seal of Solomon, and represents Divine Union, being composed of a female, watery triangle, and a male, fiery triangle. The traditional elemental triangles of earth, air, water, and fire are derived from the seal. When the points of a hexagram are connected, a hexagon is formed. Kabbalistically, the hexagram represents the Sefirah Tifaret, perfection.

http://www.symbolism.org/writing/books/sp/7/page2.html

Among the four basic elements fire has been called is the "ultra-living element." One of the most brilliant analysis of fire symbolism ever undertaken is Gaston Bachelard's Psychoanalysis of Fire. In the book, Bachelard makes this point about this unique "lifeness" of fire:

"It is intimate and it is universal. It lives in our heart. It lives in the sky. It rises from the depths of the substance and offers itself with the warmth of love. Or it can go back down into the substance and hide there, latent and pent-up, like hate and vengeance."

The conception of a hidden interior world of fire, Bachelard notes, is the basis of Dante's Inferno.

Traditionally, fire has represented the active and masculine or the Yang of Chinese symbolism. Its major symbolism is related to the sun and the powers of transformation and purification. Its basic movement is upward rather than downward like water. Traditionally, the basic symbol for fire is an upward pointing triangle or pyramid. Colors of fire are the advancing colors of red and orange and the aspects of fire are flames and rays. Whereas water has different states related to movement or rest fire is always moving and consuming.

The place of fire in natural systems is represented by deserts and mountains. The deserts symbolize the quality dryness and heat associated with fire and the mountains symbolize the upward pyramid shape of fire. Similar to the element of fire which they represent, deserts have tradionally been associated with purification. Elements of place symbolism associated with fire is day time and specifically noon when the sun's light and heat is the greatest. The association with the sun makes fire an above space phenomena rather than a below or within space phenomena. A natural phenomena which represents fire is lightning, and the phenomenom of fire out of control is symbolized by the forest fire.

There is an interesting relationship of fire with the symbolic place of Paradise. In An Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Traditional Symbols, J.C. Cooper discusses the origin of the expression "baptism by fire." The term is associated with an experience which restores primordial purity by burning away the dross of life by passing through fire to regain Paradise. Since Paradise was lost it has been surrounded by fire or protected by guardians with swords of flame. These guards and their fire symbolize understanding barring the way to the ignorant or the unenlighteded.

To Gaston Bachelard, fire holds a central place in the experience of mankind. In Psychoanalysis of Fire he notes that "fire has been an occasion for unforgettable memories" and that there is a "...slightly hypnotized condition, that is surprisingly constant in all fire watchers." This hypnotized condition is related to a state of "reverie" . . .

Bachelard writes about the surprising dichotomies of fire. "Among all phenomena," he notes, "it is really the only one to which there can be so definitely attributed the opposing values of good and evil. It shines in Paradise. It burns in hell. It is gentleness and torture. It is cookery and it is apocalypse."

Fire is also related to the process of change. Bachelard notes that slow change is defined by the process of life and quick change is explained by the process of fire. As he notes "fire suggests the desire to change, to speed up the passage of time, to bring all life to its conclusion, to its hereafter." In this sense, all that changes slowly can be explained by life while all that changes quickly can be explained by fire." As Bachelard says, "through fire everything changes." Bachelard reminds us that when we want everything changed we call on fire.

RemusLupinFan
May 14th, 2005, 4:45 pm
So I think Snape's fireplace being "as cold as he is" could definitely be a pathetic fallacy, as well as the "deep dark dungeons" themselves.

My problem is that I don't see how this can be a fallacy, since all humans think this way, lol. In a way, the fallacy becomes our own truth everytime we are gloomy on a rainy day, or exhilarated on a "crisp fall day."This is very interesting, I wasn't familiar with the term "pathetic fallacy" before you posted stuff about it. I guess you learn something new every day. :) From reading what you wrote about "pathetic fallacy" (by the way, I agree the term does sound rather derrogatory), I agree that the phrases above describing Snape do fall within the realm of pathetic "fallacy". I wonder what it means though in the context of Snape's character?

Bachelard writes about the surprising dichotomies of fire. "Among all phenomena," he notes, "it is really the only one to which there can be so definitely attributed the opposing values of good and evil. It shines in Paradise. It burns in hell. It is gentleness and torture. It is cookery and it is apocalypse.":tu: This describes Snape pretty well. The dichotomy of his seeming badness is contrasted with his actions to save/protect Harry, which definitely show us that he is on the good side (or at least, I believe he's on the good side). Snape also has many "opposing values", for instance, I think he believes in justice in a larger sense, but he is willing to perpetuate injustice toward Harry*. Also, while he acts quite mature in some regards, in others he is acts like a teenager.

*Though to be fair, some of that injustice is due to putting on airs for the Death Eaters, so it's possible that he might not have done some of the things he does if he wasn't trying to keep up appearances.

I completely agree. Snape can stay in character by "sympathizing" with his house members and turning a cold shoulder on Harry and his friends. I have been wondering though if there might be more to it; he forces Harry to swallow injustice. It reminds me a bit of how Harry is told to ignore the injustice coming from Umbridge in OotP. Is Snape trying to prepare him for this?
What do you think?That's an interesting idea, but I'm not sure that was Snape's intention. It seems to me that Snape's reasons had more to do with putting on a show (well, most of the time it wasn't really a show for Snape since he really felt that way) that he greatly disliked Harry and favored his own students over the Gryffindors. And as I said earlier, since he already pretty much did feel that way about Harry and co., it worked to his advantage. It's an interesting idea that perhaps inadvertently, Snape's behavior toward Harry could have helped in some small way in his dealing with the injustice he faced with Umbridge- especially perhaps in his dealing with her infamous quill, but I don't think it was really Snape's intention prepare Harry for dealing with injustice later down the road.

albie
May 14th, 2005, 4:54 pm
well........I am currently the only one here who still thinks that SWM might have been a set-up , it seems.......what a nice change that seems to be !!!

Firstly , Subtle . Wont use strong words like "clunky plot-point" and "meaninglessly complicated" , but I really dont think it would've taken Snape a great deal to arrange it.
One thing I must confess , what started me thinking this way was to observe that Snape kept on using the Pensieve repeatedly in front of Harry , offering absoleutely no explanatation for what he was doing . Did he not realize he was bound to rouse the curiosest boy's curiosity ? This to me , is baiting at its best.Snape chooses to put his memories into the thingy when Harry's there . WHY ?
Give me a good enough answer and I'll whip off my pointed hat and throw it at thy feet.

Next , coming to the arrangement . I think Snape put that memory there earlier and was waiting for the opportune moment to....show it to Harry . Had Malfoy not come in , could Snape not have excused himself after having put the memory in ? He would have known , wherever he went ,whether or not Potter had entered his ...head , and whether the plan had succeeded. If Potter had managed to check his curiosity , Snape had other chances in future. So , Snape had nothing at all to do with what was happening outside his office -Trelawney getting fired , Montague , Twins , Toilet.....whatever happened, in short .

Next , Why ?
Why? Why would Severus want to do this ? Why would he want to show Harry the memory , the way he did ?
I do think there is a big difference between how much Harry could see into Snape's head during the PROTEGO thing and how much he saw in the Pensieve. It just isnt the same (picture me stamping the feet on the floor)
as LIVING it out , as Harry nearly did in the Pensieve.
Snape's aim at showing Harry the whole thing ?
For one , he need not utter ever again a word about James to Harry -that memory did it all , putting a thousand words into one scene very neatly.

For another , was this not a very neat way for Snape to back out of Occlumency lessons , which , while they lasted too , were not doing Harry much help ? Think about it , Albie too accepted snape's refusa; to teach Harry with a " there are some wounds that run too deep for the healing" ( Ipersonaaly do not beleive this , for I want Harry and Snape to settle things by the end , or they're all going to pay a very heavy price , they have once , with Sirius' life)

For yet another , Snape -masochistic ????( not really relevant but my sis laughed herself silly when I pronounced this is as masochissstic and not -kistic- , like that's a big mistake !!!)
Noway !! Snape appears to me as a fellow who has suffered brutally in life and not enjoyed it , he's had hell . Why would showing Harry the memory be masochistic anyway , if Snape had planned it all along . He knew hoiw much the memory would maul Harry , he knew Harry had this hero image of his Dad. If Snape could shatter that in a second....well that would not be masochistic, that would be sadistic, and Snape has been sadistic before .

As for risking Harry spilling the beans to the whole scool about the memory , and telling everyone that his dad was a real bully and a conceited *** while he was at school.............
Snape must have known Harry wouldnt risk that .

If anyone here can settle these doubts (quash them with reasoning) , they are welcome . And if it can be resolved , well , I'll be glad ....coz I've got a reeeeally important exam on the 22 of May and I might actually have to prepare for it !!! This meaning , of course , no more COS till then .:upset: :upset: :upset:

So , whether you buy this or boot this , wish me luck , wizards !! (I'll be needing ALL of it , Honest . The Physics , especially gives me the nightmares...)

Till then.......CHEERS !!

kath84
May 14th, 2005, 5:07 pm
Hey! i'm not that educated in the quotingworld, but i dare say i've read the potterbooks a few times..so,,

[/QUOTE]Originally Posted by subtle science
I've been digging...

I went on a hunt for scenes during which Snape contradicts or argues with Dumbledore, and I discovered that it's really CoS and PoA where that happens.

In CoS, it's fairly mild--and, actually, justified, after the boys have arrived by car:

Snape looked as though Christmaas had been canceled. He cleared his throat and said, "Professor Dumbeldore, these boys have flouted the Decree for the Restriction of Underage Wizardry, caused serious damage to an old and valuable tree--surely acts of this natire--"
"It will be for Professor McGonagall to decide on these boys' punishment, Severus," said Dumbledore calmly. "They are in her House and are therefore her responsibility." He turned to Professor McGonagall. "I must go back to the feast, Minerva, I've got to give out a few notices. Come, Severus, there's a delicious-looking custard tart I want to sample--"
Snape shot a look of pure venom at Harry and Ron as he allowed himself to be swept out of his office... (p. 82, US paper).

But Dumbledore's point is also justified--and there is no further discussion because it's not necessary. There's no tension here at all, even though Snape is disappointed that this is not an opportunity to make Harry suffer; he just goes with Dumbledore back to the feast, willingly enough.

Later, when Mrs. Norris is petrified, Snape makes the outrageous suggestion that a punishment for Harry's apparently not telling the truth would be his suspension from the Quidditch team. Dumbledore doesn't even deal with that one; McGonagall sees right through her Quidditch rival's manuever and calls him on it--with no further protestation from Snape, even though he looks "furious" after Dumbeldore comments, "Innocent until proven guilty, Severus" (p. 144). Again, Snape's just annoyed that Harry escaped his punishment--it was worth a try!

In PoA, hwoever, things take a very different turn. There's real anger in these arguments--and not just from Snape.

It begins with the scene in the Great Hall, when the castle is being searched for Sirius, and Snape reports to Dumbledore in the middle of the night. A main point of the scene is that they have clearly had this conversation before.

"Have you any theory as to how [Black] got in, Professor?" asked Snape....
"Many, Severus, each of them as unlikely as the next"....
"You remember the conversation we had, Headmaster, just before--ah--the start of term?"....
"I do, Severus," said Dumbledore, and there was something like warning in his voice.
"It seems--almost impossible--that Black could've netered the school without inside help. I did express my concerns when you appointed--"
"I do not believe a single person inside this castle would have helped Black enter it," said Dumbledore, and his tone made it so clear that the subject was closed that Snape didn't reply....
Dumbeldore left the hall, walking quickly and quietly. Snape stood for a moment, watching the headmaster with an expression of deep resentment on his face; then he too left (pp. 165-166).

This time, Dumbledore himself is angry, and he shows it. His interruption of Snape is in no way kindly--no custard tarts here. He shuts Snape down--and he walks out after a word with Percy. And--Snape's angry look is not directed at Harry: this time, he means Dumbledore. Not happy.

Snape's resentment reveals itself in the Shack, when he tells Lupin, "I shall be interested to see how Dumbledore takes this" (p. 359)--he obviously feels he's won the argument; he's got proof that Dumbledore should've listened to him all along. Yet, Dumbeldore does not, and the ending scenes of PoA show Snape in a high fury at Dumbledore for it. He actually lays into Dumbledore:

"I suppose [Sirius has] told you the same fairy tale he's planted in Potter's mind?" spat Snape. "Soemthing about a rat, and Pettigrew being alive--"
"That, indeed, is Black's story," said Dumbledore, surveying Snape closely through his half-moon spectacles.
"And does my evidence count for nothing?" snarled Snape....
"I would like to speak to Harry and Hermione alone," said Dumbledore abruptly. "Cornelius, Severus, Poppy--please leave us"....
[Fudge] crossed to the door and held it open for Snape, but Snape hadn't moved.
"You surely don't believe a word of Black's story?" Snape whispered, his eyes fixed on Dumbledore's face.
"I wish to speak to Harry and Hermione alone," Dumbledore repeated.
Snape took a step toward Dumbledore.
"Sirius Black showed he was capable of murder at the age of sixteen," he breathed. "You haven't forgotten that, Headmaster? You haven't forgotten that he once tried to kill me?"
"My memory is as good as it ever was, Severus," said Dumbeldore quietly.
Snape turned on his heel and marched through the door Fudge was still holding (pp. 390-391).

Snape reverts to his trademark whisper, indicating he's beyond angry at this point. His dismissal, along with Fudge and Pomfrey; Dumbeldore's 'choosing' Black's testimony over his; Dumbledore's refusal to consider Snape's ideas--fury. He's been told to leave, but he didn't, so his eventual exit becomes his walking out on Dumbledore. He's going to repeat it in the final explosion.

"YOU DON'T KNOW POTTER!" shrieked Snape. "HE DID IT, I KNOW HE DID IT--"
"That will do, Severus," said Dumbledore quietly. "Think about what you are saying. This door has been locked since I left the ward ten minutes ago. Madam Pomfrey, have these students left their beds?"
"Of course not!"....
"Well, there you have it, Severus," said Dumbledore calmly. "Unless you are suggesting that Harry and Hermione are able to be in two places at once, I'm afraid I don't see any point in troubling them further."
Snape stood there, seething, staring from Fudge, who looked thoroughly shocked at his behavior, to Dumbledore, whose eyes were twinkling behind his glasses. Snape whirled about, robes swishing behind him, and stormed out of the ward (p. 420).

Not only will Dumbledore not listen to Snape, but his attitude is infuriating. Snape is right; he knows that something is up, and he is being shunted aside. The "twinkling" eyes could imply that Dumbledore is even laughing a bit at Snape--which is hardly a good approach when Snape is in (for him) a good mood. Here, Snape feels condescended to and made to look a fool. It is interesting to note that, in both this scene and the previous, he pauses, as if he'd say more, but instead turns and walks out. As infuriated as he is--he won't quite go so far as to say to Dumbledore what he really would like to...and we know he has an extensive and colorful vocabulary, thanks to SWM.[QUOTE]

I have been reading some of your thoughts about the snape-dumbledore-harry relationship, the grouthink-theory, etc..and i agree, to a limited extent. because - i can see why snape feel neglected; he did propose to dumbledore that giving lupin a job is/was a mistake. and in the end he asks dumbledore to remember that sirius was capable of murder already in the teens - and dumbledore says his memory is as good as ever..or something.. about that - i doubt sirius being the only one ever capable of murder, while sirius acted of unthoughtfulness and of a strong desire to give Snivellus a lesson (which i suppose he could've done in another way..), snape on his other side has been a death-eater, and i dare say that that also expresses something about snape. and dumbledore knows that snape is so emotional affected when reminded of the marauders that he doesn't think clear.

Snape wasn't willing to listening to the story sirius, lupin and the others were telling, and therefore he had to leave. the other factor we have to put under consideration is that fudge is present at the last scene in PoA, and asking him alone to leave the hospitalwing would sound a bit suspiscious..The whole scenario makes snape look like a fool..and he is in some way - because when it comes to anything that reminds him of his past, he totally bolcks alle sort of sense - he becomes too emotionally involved..and who do we know that shares some of that character?

thanks:)

subtle science
May 14th, 2005, 5:44 pm
Snape uses the Pensieve in front of Harry because there is no reason for him not to. The whole Occlumency tutorial is an exercise in trust: Snape knows he is going to be rummaging around in Harry's mind, seeing memories he, frankly, has no business seeing. Harry may well do the same to Snape, if he proves to have any skill. However, there is a distinct difference between Snape, 40 years old, seeing a 15-year-old's memories and the 15-year-old seeing those of an adult male who also happens to be an ex-DE spy. Snape edits what Harry can see; some may say that's not playing fair--I see it as an incredibly responsible act on Snape's part. Furthermore, he doesn't attempt to lie to Harry: Harry witnesses his doing it; there's no subterfuge. There's event he possibility that he's assuming Harry doesn't know what A pensieve is--athough the fact that Harry doesn't ask about it indicates some knowledge.

He leaves it on his desk--why not? He's a teacher; it's his desk; Harry's got no business going through anything on a teacher's desk. He leaves Harry alone with it. Whether Snape chose to do this consciously or not doesn't matter--each time he left, he may have been in such a hurry that he didn't even stop to consider that he was leaving Harry alone with the Pensieve; or, he knew Harry would be alone with it and didn't consider it to be an issue. Again, it's the trust: the lessons actually start with Snape's telling Harry that not only may Harry use a wand to defend himself, but he may also use any spell he wants--this is reinforced when Harry uses the Stinging Hex and Protego: neither time is Snape upset by the spells--Harry did what he had been told to do, and Snape, by telling him that originally, was accepting the risk.

SWM doesn't just show James in a bad light--more to the point, it shows Snape in a bad light: the worst light possible--helpless, ineffective, and vulnerable. The Snape in SWM is the diametric opposite of present-day Snape--indicating that, in fact, this episode was a turning point in Snape's life.

albie--I'm sorry my opinion on this upsets you so; to be frank, it doesn't matter a bit to me whether or not you think the Pensieve scene was a set up.

silver ink pot--Great stuff on the fire imagery (and, yes, you are having a Hermione moment!). I went off to find a favorite group of poems by T. S. Eliot: The Four Quartets, and, in particular, "Little Gidding." I lamost had a fit when I realized my copies were at school--but then came to my sense and realized the joy of the Internet. You can read The Four Quartets online at: http://www.tristan.icom43.net/quartets/

The Quartets are filled with water and fire imagery--the latter especially in "Little Gidding," so I had to run and collect quotations:

From Section II of "LG":

Ash on an old man's sleeve
Is all the ash the burnt roses leave.
Dust in the air suspended
Marks the place where a story ended.
Dust inbreathed was a house--
The walls, the wainscot and the mouse,
The death of hope and despair,
This is the death of air.

There are flood and drouth
Over the eyes and in the mouth,
Dead water and dead sand
Contending for the upper hand.
The parched eviscerate soil
Gapes at the vanity of toil,
Laughs without mirth.
This is the death of earth.

Water and fire succeed
The town, the pasture and the weed.
Water and fire deride
The sacrifice that we denied.
Water and fire shall rot
The marred foundations we forgot,
Of sanctuary and choir.
This is the death of water and fire.

Eliot was writing at the height of WWII; in fact, he patrolled London at night during the bombing. This section is a vision of what seems to be the end of the world--it begins with the scene of a bombed London house, in which the family (roses) died. It seems as if the very elements themselves will be destroyed in the catastrophe that is the War.

Yet--how apt a description is this of the night James and Lily died?-- a 'story ended,' but Harry's began [later in the poem--and earlier in the Quartets themselves, Eliot writes: "What we call the beginning is often the end/And to make an end is to make a beginning./The end is where we start from" (Section V)]. Hope--the Potters--died, but so did, apparently, 'despair'--Voldemort.

Eliot also makes use of the dual nature of fire--destroyer and purifier, with a reference to the Pentacostal fire of inspiration as well--in Section IV:

The dove descending breaks the air
With flame of incandescent terror
Of which the tongues declare
The one discharge from sin and error.
The only hope, or else despair
Lies in the choice of pyre or pyre--
To be redeemed from fire by fire.

I'm readying myself for Book 6, Hermione: I'm getting that mental image of the cover of the British children's edition.....

Before I had to go racing off to dig up Eliot's fire references...I was also looking at GoF, and Snape's revelation of the Dark Mark, to find a interesting little bit of trivia: in one short paragraph describing the Mark, Snape references burning three times:

"It is not as clear as it was an hour or so ago, when it burned black" (p. 709)

"Every Death Eater had the sign burned into him by the Dark Lord."

"We both felt the Mark burn" (p. 710)

vickilind
May 14th, 2005, 8:16 pm
Okay, I am trying this to see if it works. Wooden sent me an owl with a procedure, but I accidently deleted it and was left very frustrated.

Okay, I am obviously computer hopeless, as I still can't get this to work.

[quote] or if none of that works, then just type this before the paragraph you want to quote.....then type this after the last word or puntuation mark

Let's see if this works. Yeah!!!!! Thanks SIP, this will work for me, as it is simple.

Chievrefueil
May 14th, 2005, 8:18 pm
If you want what you wrote above to appear as a quote, you have to put [/quote] after it.

vickilind
May 14th, 2005, 8:45 pm
This describes Snape pretty well. The dichotomy of his seeming badness is contrasted with his actions to save/protect Harry, which definitely show us that he is on the good side (or at least, I believe he's on the good side). Snape also has many "opposing values", for instance, I think he believes in justice in a larger sense, but he is willing to perpetuate injustice toward Harry*. Also, while he acts quite mature in some regards, in others he is acts like a teenager.

*Though to be fair, some of that injustice is due to putting on airs for the Death Eaters, so it's possible that he might not have done some of the things he does if he wasn't trying to keep up appearances.



I agree; I can see Snape using the chance to pick on Harry to perpetuate the vision that Snape is still "bad". Plus, he must feel some perverse pleasure in getting back at James, through Harry.


[quote]
He leaves it on his desk--why not? He's a teacher; it's his desk; Harry's got no business going through anything on a teacher's desk. He leaves Harry alone with it. Whether Snape chose to do this consciously or not doesn't matter--each time he left, he may have been in such a hurry that he didn't even stop to consider that he was leaving Harry alone with the Pensieve; or, he knew Harry would be alone with it and didn't consider it to be an issue. Again, it's the trust: the lessons actually start with Snape's telling Harry that not only may Harry use a wand to defend himself, but he may also use any spell he wants--this is reinforced when Harry uses the Stinging Hex and Protego: neither time is Snape upset by the spells--Harry did what he had been told to do, and Snape, by telling him that originally, was accepting the risk.

SWM doesn't just show James in a bad light--more to the point, it shows Snape in a bad light: the worst light possible--helpless, ineffective, and vulnerable. The Snape in SWM is the diametric opposite of present-day Snape--indicating that, in fact, this episode was a turning point in Snape's life.

I have felt that SWM was a turning point for Snape too. It makes sense to me that he wouldn't want anyone to see that, not even Harry. Once the damage was done, he took the opportunity to point out to Harry how awful his dad was. And to let some of his hatred for James leak into his language.
I like the idea of trust. Snape did not only tell Harry he could used his wand, but when he did, Snape did not retaliate. Again, trust. Harry can be very clueless; if he had been thinking, even a little, he would have understood this. Snape has never allowed Harry the opportunity to do anything to him, yet, in the Occ lessons, he does. Harry still doesn't see how important the lessons are. If he (Harry) had thought about the fact that Snape is allowing Harry to defend himself with no retaliation on Snapes part, Harry might have come to some understanding. But, as DD has said about Snape, some wounds that run too deep for healing. In Harrys case, it's not so much about wounds but feelings. He has hated Snape since day one at Hogwarts and Snape has done little to change those feelings. Harry holds onto to his notion of who Snape is and doesn't see the truth.

Okay, let's see if the quote thing worked?

Okay, SIP, I think I love you!!! It worked!!! Makes my life so much easier now.

Gotta run now. People coming over so I have to clean my house.
Back later.

Mcpherson
May 14th, 2005, 10:00 pm
think that metaphor is very apt, and I agree that Snape probably does envy the fact that Lupin is so well-liked. I don’t think he envies Lupin’s popularity because he himself is not popular. If that were true, I’m sure he’d try to make himself more likable. Rather, I think his envy of Lupin stems from the fact that he believes Lupin to be untrustworthy and knowns he's hiding a secret (his lycanthropy), but still people like him. Since Snape is also viewed as being untrustworthy by many (and his behavior often does nothing to contradict it), but people don’t like him or give him a second chance despite the fact that Dumbledore trusts him. I think he might be a bit envious of the fact that Dumbledore shows trust in both he and Lupin, but people only acknowledge Dumbledore’s trust in Lupin and often don’t quite believe Dumbledore when it comes to Snape.

When reading this, I agreed with you, RLFan, but now I think there might be a more serious matter involved--Snape doesn't like the fact that nobody trusts him as they trust and like Remus, but that's still a very personal problem. However, if you think of the possible consequences of Dumbledore being 'foolished' by 'traitorous' Remus for Severus, they seem to be, erm, severe. The Potions Master is a spy, after all, and needs the protection of someone even more powerful than Voldemort in order to survive, which is of course Dumbedore. But if the Headmaster doesn't know about an almost ostentatious traitor in his own school, then how can he be of any help when it comes to the most dangerous villain of our times? Dumbledore acting as everyone else, that is trusting Lupin, makes his the same sort of fools as everybody else in Snape's opinion is. And without Albus's protection Severus is even more vulnerable, as there's nobody else who could help Snape or at least believe him to the same extent as the Headmaster does. Or am I overanalising?

I think Snape is putting on a show for Draco, Crabbe, and Goyle. If he always favors his own house, then the kids won't have a clue that he might be on Harry's side. You know, if I were in Snape's shoes, and had been through all that he has with the DEs, I would pity Draco, Crabbe, and Goyle. They are seemingly following in their father's footsteps and will probably be Jr. DEs under the control of Voldemort in a few years. Favoring them in school won't really give them any edge in life if they grow up to be criminals. Letting them have an extra hour on the Quidditch field now won't keep them from getting the Cruciatus Curse from Voldemort if they fail in a task.

:tu: so true!

To Gaston Bachelard, fire holds a central place in the experience of mankind.

Fire is also a symbol of the development of mankind since the knowledge of how to use fire was the first step of the evolution from an animal to a true Homo Sapiens Sapiens . The step from which there was no retreat. This is the moment when a human (or humanoid at this point) being ceases to be an integral part of nature--it starts to try to take control over Earth. This is a great metaphor of taming not only nature by itself, but also of taming the piece of nature within us, our emotions. The knowledge of how to make and extinguish fire can be also interpreted as a metaphor for all the development of humankind. And where does Snape fit in? He is the best at taming his inner nature, his emotions.

Oh, and I tried to browse the books through in search of the 'curtain of greasy hair', but unfortunately I don't have much time now as I still have one exam to do--History of Art... I have checked CoS and PoA and was astonished with what I found, or to express myself better--what I did not find. In these two books there's almost no mention of Snape's 'greasy curtain':

In CoS, in chapter five, The Whomping Willow, there's the only reference made to Snape's hair as 'greasy':

"Maybe he's ill!" said Ron hopefully.
"Maybe he's left," said Ha-rry, "because he missed out on the Defense
Against Dark Arts job again!"
"Or he might have been sacked!" said Ron enthusiastically. "I mean,
everyone hates him -"
"Or maybe," said a very cold voice right behind them, "he's waiting to
hear why you two didn't arrive on the school train."
Harry spun around. There, his black robes rippling in a cold breeze,
stood Severus Snape. He was a thin man with sallow skin, a hooked
nose, and greasy, shoulder-length black hair, and at this moment, he
was smiling in a way that told Harry he and Ron were in very deep
trouble.
"Follow me," said Snape.

This is nothing new and unexpected really, but in the whole book there's no 'curtain' of Snape's hair... :sad: But, the only person described as having greasy hair in the book is Mr.Borgin, the owner of the Dark Arts shop where Harry sees Lucius (chapter four: At Flourish and Blotts):

"You have told me this at least a dozen times already," said Mr.
Malfoy, with a quelling look at his son. "And I would remind you that it
is not - prudent - to appear less than fond of Harry Potter, not when
most of our kind regard him as the hero who made the Dark Lord
disappear - ah, Mr. Borgin."
A stooping man had appeared behind the counter, smoothing his
greasy hair back from his face.
"Mr. Malfoy, what a pleasure to see you again," said Mr. Borgin in a
voice as oily as his hair. "Delighted - and young Master Malfoy, too -
charmed. How may I be of assistance? I must show you, just in today,
and very reasonably priced -"
"I'm not buying today, Mr. Borgin, but selling," said Mr. Malfoy.

Not only is Mr.Borgin's hair greasy, but his behaviour towards Malfoy is so much like Snape's--they both act as if they were delighted to know Lucius and be his friends while actually feeling abomination. They also seem to be good at hiding their true feelings. No, I'm not trying to say that there has to be a connection between Mr. Borgin and Snape, but just that it's interesting to see that these two characters are similar.

In PoA Snape's 'greasy hair' appears in the chapter six, Talons and Tea Leaves at a Potions class after Malfoy's accident with Buckbeak:

"Professor," drawled Malfoy, "Weasley's mutilating my roots, sir."
Snape approached their table, stared down his hooked nose at the roots,
then gave Ron an unpleasant smile from beneath his long, greasy black
hair.
"Change roots with Malfoy, Weasley."

Not very illuminating, is it? Snape seems to use his long hair to hide some of his emotions. Emotions that shouldn't be showed in such situations, but nevertheless they are perfectly justified in the eyes of some bystanders and on the other hand lead to infuriating others. Severus is making an 'effort' to hide his smile, so that it is hard to accuse him of anything.

No curtain of greasy hair, sorry, but I tried hard to find it--at least you see that I did what I could... :sad:

shadowdogs
May 14th, 2005, 10:40 pm
Baiting Harry with the penseive... hmm. Or, Snape acting without subterfuge. These are surprisingly black and white explanations of a wizard who never acts on only one motivation. Up until that moment, Snape was certainly following Dumbledore's request in minute detail, and at the same time leaving the door wide open for Harry to prove how useless he is, if Harry should be so inclined... How Slytherin-like.

The scene is meant to show that DD's good faith can only do so much. Even Dumbledore needs reminding of this fact. They both really believe in DD, but they're pretty skeptical when it comes to DD's faith in others. Naturally -- this is something people have to do on their own. *sigh* It's so complicated being on the side of good. The lessons don't succeed because they just won't invest in each other. They both act too skeptically to make progress, although I agree with everyone who's said that Snape is trying harder than Harry, by the way.

What a contrast to the scene in Umbridge's office. That moment when Harry is staring at Snape, silently begging him to read his mind, hasn't been discussed as much as other Snape/Harry encounters, but I've thought about it a lot. So Snape's help was Harry absolute last and least desired source of help. He chose him over despair, right? That's something. And they have no real trouble communicating over the critical information (although this breaks down at the soonest possible moment). Any thoughts on the relationship between those two scenes?

Tonksaholic
May 14th, 2005, 10:43 pm
Just a curiosity. Are we certain that Snape was in slytherin? I know he's their head of house but was he in slytherin at hogwarts?

subtle science
May 14th, 2005, 11:27 pm
I never got around to posting these, but twice in OotP the "curtain" reference is made. One is the kitchen scene of 12GP: "Snape looked around at him, his face framed between curtains of greasy black hair" (p. 518, US hardcover). The other is when Umbrdige demands more Veritaserum from him: "surveying her coolly through his greasy curtains of black hair" (p. 744). The image is defintely used to convey hiding...

The problem with the Occlumency lessons is that Harry never perceives what Snape is doing; Snape, unfortunately, is stronger at actions that speak louder than his words--and it shows again in the lessons. He's trying to teach Harry, but Harry isn't able to pick up on the non-verbal clues--since Harry has never been able to read Snape's actions. For instance, Snape actually tells Harry to close his eyes before he performs Legilimency on him again. Harry immediately suspects Snape's motive...despite the fact that, only a page or two earlier, Snape had told him that eye contact was essential to Legilimency. Harry can't grasp the fundamental logic: Snape is giving him an advantage, to help him deflect the spell by making it more difficult for himself and easier for Harry. A wand, carte blanche to hit Snape with any spell he wants, and cloing his eyes: Snape's loading the lesson as much as he can in Harry's favor. Harry's response: Snape is deliberately assaulting him, humiliating him, and exposing him further to Voldemort.

I came across this passage while thumbing through GoF:

"Oh, Ron," said Hermione, shaking her head skeptically,"we thought Snape was trying to kill Harry before, and it turned out he was saving Harry's life, remember?"....
Harry looked at Hermione, thinking...it was true that SNape had saved his life once, but the odd thing was, Snape definitely loathed him, just as he'd loathed Harry's father when they had been at school together. Snape loved taking points from Harry, and had certainly never missed an opportunity to give him punishments, or even to suggest that he should be suspended from the school (pp. 480-481).

It neatly defines Harry's basic problem: he can't reconcile what Snape says with what Snape does. He's not mature enough to realize how Snape functions. Actually, one of the running plot points in the books has been the question of reality versus appearance. Harry is (very slowly) absorbing the idea that people are not necessarily what they appear to be--Quirrell, Lockhart, Umbridge are fairly obvious. But there's also Fudge, who at first appears important because he's the Minister, then avuncular, and finally weak and ineffectively power hungry; there's suave, urbane, and sophisticated Lucius Malfoy, who turns out to be a homicial, faithful DE. Other, good characters also show that there's more beneath the surface--Lupin's lycanthropy; Dobby's unexpected and (so far) unexplained powers; Dumbledore's grandfatherly, eccentric geniality overlaying a frightening power.

Harry still tends to see the world immaturely, in black and white absolutes. Therefore, he doesn't--and can't--'get' Snape's personality. Even with the evidence right in his face--that Snape comes to his rescue, Harry keeps reverting to the hatred based upon Snape's verbal treatment of him. The most egregious example of this is his blaming of Snape at the end of OotP, which flies in the face of every scrap of logic.

What Harry focuses on is how nastily Snape spoke to Sirius, and so, "Whatever Dumbledore said, he would never forgive Snape...never..." (p. 851). Even Harry can't clarify to the audience what exactly it is that he can't forgive Snape for--possibly because there's really nothing there?He's looking for something to alleviate what he feels about Sirius' death; he's looking for some justification, so to speak, for Sirius' death. His solution is to rely on his old hatred and apply it irrationally--but, satisfactorily for him--to Snape.

Harry has to know that Snape could not react in front of Umbridge--he's young, not an idiot. But accepting that would also mean accepting the idea that mean Professor Snape actually came to the rescue (again), despite the fact that Snape had reason to ignore Harry (it would have been incredibly petty and immature, as well as irresponsible, of Snape to do so; and, while he may have some of those traits, he doesn't have any of them to that extent).

Rather than working through the logic--which would have to turn Harry's view of Snape upside down and inside out--Harry refuses to acknowledge what "Out of the Fire" proves to him: Snape is on his side. Harry's world has already been rocked by Sirius' death; he doesn't need this as well. He can't handle it yet. And--coming to the realization that Snape is on his side means also accepting his own culpability in what happened: not learning Occlumency, despite the urging of a trio of reliable people: Hermione, Lupin, and Dumbledore; forgetting both the mirror and Snape's role as an Order member; rushing off to the 'rescue' against all advice to the contrary.

Harry would rather make Snape the scapegoat, even though Snape did everything in his power to help...and...could've done more, had Harry gone back to him..., than try to assimilate all of this. It's too much.

Mcpherson
May 14th, 2005, 11:31 pm
Just a curiosity. Are we certain that Snape was in slytherin? I know he's their head of house but was he in slytherin at hogwarts?

Rowling said that the Heads of the Houses were in the same Houses when young:. This is an extract from Rowling's site (http://www.jkrowling.com/textonly/faq_view.cfm?id=62):

Section: F.A.Q.
If a teacher is head of a house, can we assume that they were sorted into those houses when they were students at Hogwarts? Is that also true for the house ghosts? So was Snape a Slytherin?

A Mugglenet/Harry Potter Lexicon Open Letter Question (I can't promise I'll answer them all, but I'll try and work through them). Yes, if the teacher is Head of House you can indeed assume that they were pupils within that house. So Snape was very definitely a Slytherin and yes, the same is true of the house ghosts.

------------
I couldn't resist and tried to dig something about 'greasy curtain' in OotP and finally found it:

'Ah, Professor Snape,' said Umbridge, smiling widely and standing up again. 'Yes, 1 would
like another bottle of Veritaserum, as quick as you can, please.'
'You took my last bottle to interrogate Potter,' he said, surveying her coolly through his greasy
curtains of black hair. 'Surely you did not use it all? I told you that three drops would be
sufficient.'
Umbridge flushed.

This is taken from chapter thirty-two called Out of the Fire. The situation is dangerous for Harry and Snape as well--both of them have to be careful with Umbridge, but Harry needs desperately to communicate to Severus that Sirius is captured by Voldemort. The 'curtain' here again is an 'effort'* to hide the Potion Master's emotions. But the fact that Snape actually does show some feelings seems to be of some importance, since, as I wrote in my last post, in fact intends to unleash his emotions. In the excerpt from PoA that I included in my last post there was a similar situation--the smile was supposed to enrage Ron and his friends while magnifying Draco's bloated ego.

In the scene from OotP Snape's 'cool surveying' is a declaration of contempt and abomination of Umbidge. It is aimed against her,and again there's nothing she could accuse Severus of, as he didn't express his feelings verbally or in other, more obvious way. But to use the PoA situation as the key to this scene requires to find also someone who should be glad of such reaction as was Draco. Should it be Harry? It seems so, because if Harry had read the expression of Snape's face correctly, he would have understood that Severus is on his side even though reluctantly.

This scene also shows that the Potions Master isn't afraid at all of Umbridge, since he actually shows her his true feelings. On the other hand, he doesn't risk that much as Umbridge doesn't understand the meaning of Snape's 'cool surveying'.

*it's not a true effort, Snape is rather pretending to hide his feelings

ETA: Ah, subtle, simultaneous post writing...

vickilind
May 15th, 2005, 1:09 am
I leave for a few hours and you all just continue the brilliant posts. I love reading them. Listen, while I was cleaning, I was thinking about Snape and the whole PBS theory. Don't panic, I'm not going into that, but rather, take a different tact, so bear with me:
Those who read a PBS in the book are, in my opinion, reading too muchinto it. It seems to me that the books are about choices and redemption. Choices are what define us, not necessarily our gifts. If one is gifted with musical talent but chooses not to pursue that, it is their loss, and, by extension, possibly the loss to society. If Mozart had decided he wanted to be an accountant, look at the music we would have lost.
LV made choices to use his gifting in magic to his own evil ends. DD chooses to use his to help the wizarding world as a whole.
Harry learns, in every book, that his choices make all the difference in the world. If he had chosen NOT to listen to Remus and Sirius in the SS, the entire series would be different. He has gifting, we know that, but his choices are what defines him. He chose to tell Cedric about the dragons, because he thought it was right. He didn't have to; it would have given him an advantage. He chose what's right instead of what was easy. It is a learning curve though. When it comes to Snape, he chooses what's easy over what's right. (Snape, no matter how reprehensible, is on the good side)
Snape, I think, is an integral part of the book for demostrating redemption. He has realized the error of his ways and continues to do everything he can to "finish" his redemption. The trust he has from DD means more to him than to most, because most don't know what he did. He has told DD his story and DD believes him. But, it still doesn't seem to be enough for Snape; he needs more.
For those who follow the PBS, it seems to be an already told story. We have heard, and continue to hear about the horrors of the first LV war and all that went along with it; muggle deaths, half and muggle born deaths, and all for the sake of "purifying the race." It would seem to me that having Snape be part of the whole PBS thing would discount his need for redemption. And I think his redemption is integral to the stories. It would be beating a dead horse, so to speak.
We hear constantly through the books about everyone learning to live together; GoF was, in fact, a huge step towards that, even though it failed. Trying to get all magical people to get along is a constant theme. To throw the PBS in at the end would defeat so much of what JKR seems to be shooting for.
Snape loathes Harry, I think in huge part for his connection to James. Snape has never gotten over the humiliation of SWM and, as mentioned before, many feel it lead to his going to LVs side. It would make his dislike of Harry that much more intense, knowing that scene was a turning point for Snape.
In the end, Harry will need to make a difficult choice regarding LV; to kill or be killed. But, somewhere in the end also, he and Snape must make a choice to reconcile their differences. Snape seems to need, somewhere deep inside, to get forgiveness from Harry for whatever part Snape played in the demise of Harry's family. Therein lies Snapes redemption.

I hope this makes sense, and I'm sorry if I got way of the topic, but I was thinking abou it for 2 hours while I cleaned and if I didn't get it down, I was going to explode.
Thanks for listening (reading). Now back to your regularly scheduled topic.

subtle science
May 15th, 2005, 2:20 am
vickilind--Therein lies the hidden danger of cleaning: too much time to think. Along with all of the other perils involved. : ) (I myself am currently doing laundry and watching NASCAR; it's an exciting life, but I try to bear up under the pressure.)

The problem I have with Snape's being fundamentally evil--including working for his own agenda--is that it demands am amorality in the books. Undeniably, there are archetypes in the Harry Potter series; JKR has drawn upon a tradition of British Literature--and there is a heavy Christian influence: it's not preachy--I don't mean that--but she's drawing upon those patterns as well. Through five books, Snape has demonstrated the idea of the repenting sinner--or, if you're looking for an older type: the honorable man foresworn. While JKR is very good at the sleight of hand (or word, as it is), there's a limit. She's provided enough red herrings about Snape: as more details come out about him, it becomes clearer that, while he is an unpleasant person (to Harry), he is not an evil person.

He is the illustration of the theme of choices and redemption in the book. Should he, in the final two books, suddenly be revealed as a doublecrosser, whether working for Voldemort or himself, the theme is destroyed. Dumbledore, the champion of both ideas, would be a fool; all of his credibility would be lost. That alone would destroy the books. In addition, the theatic message would be that there is no such thing as redemption; you cannot change what you are. One choice eliminates all others; there is no going back. If Voldemort wins, with the help of Snape (besides being a foul conclusion to the Harry Potter series), then evil triumphs. If Snape is working to achieve his own ends, the it's worse: neither good nor evil wins; amorality does.

JKR has provided red herrings in the texts; she wants to keep the suspense and doubt alive. However, according to the structure of the novels that she herself has established, there doesn't seem to be any real basis for the notion that, suddenly, Snape is going to become the main character in the series and be revealed as the ultimate puppet master. My usual disclaimer: of course, JKR can do anything she pleases. However, such a sudden reversal will result in the collapse of the internal structure of the first five books. End result: the first five books will be classics; the final two will be a disappointing failure to fulfill early promise.

Chievrefueil
May 15th, 2005, 3:57 am
Baiting Harry with the penseive... hmm. Or, Snape acting without subterfuge. These are surprisingly black and white explanations of a wizard who never acts on only one motivation. Up until that moment, Snape was certainly following Dumbledore's request in minute detail, and at the same time leaving the door wide open for Harry to prove how useless he is, if Harry should be so inclined... How Slytherin-like.I'm not sure I understand what you're suggesting. Either Snape intended for Harry to see the memories or he didn't, right? Am I missing something?
But, the only person described as having greasy hair in the book is Mr.Borgin, the owner of the Dark Arts shop where Harry sees Lucius (chapter four: At Flourish and Blotts):

"You have told me this at least a dozen times already," said Mr.
Malfoy, with a quelling look at his son. "And I would remind you that it
is not - prudent - to appear less than fond of Harry Potter, not when
most of our kind regard him as the hero who made the Dark Lord
disappear - ah, Mr. Borgin."
A stooping man had appeared behind the counter, smoothing his
greasy hair back from his face.
"Mr. Malfoy, what a pleasure to see you again," said Mr. Borgin in a
voice as oily as his hair. "Delighted - and young Master Malfoy, too -
charmed. How may I be of assistance? I must show you, just in today,
and very reasonably priced -"
"I'm not buying today, Mr. Borgin, but selling," said Mr. Malfoy.

Not only is Mr.Borgin's hair greasy, but his behaviour towards Malfoy is so much like Snape's--they both act as if they were delighted to know Lucius and be his friends while actually feeling abomination. They also seem to be good at hiding their true feelings. No, I'm not trying to say that there has to be a connection between Mr. Borgin and Snape, but just that it's interesting to see that these two characters are similar.The thing that struck me about the description of Borgin that is different from Snape is that he was smoothing his hair back--away from his face. Although, as you noticed, Snape is not always described with a "curtain" of greasy black hair, the image of him is with his hair hanging about his face. Borgin is open. Snape is closed.
He is the illustration of the theme of choices and redemption in the book. Should he, in the final two books, suddenly be revealed as a doublecrosser, whether working for Voldemort or himself, the theme is destroyed. Yes, I agree with you and vickilind. You've smartly avoided the pureblood agenda thread, but one of my counter-arguments to whizbang was that if a Death Eater could never choose to leave Voldemort, it would negate the theme of choice in the books. Snape's redemption is very central to this theme.

silver ink pot
May 15th, 2005, 5:19 am
vickilind--Therein lies the hidden danger of cleaning: too much time to think. Along with all of the other perils involved. : ) (I myself am currently doing laundry and watching NASCAR; it's an exciting life, but I try to bear up under the pressure.)
:tu: LOL.

The problem I have with Snape's being fundamentally evil--including working for his own agenda--is that it demands am amorality in the books. Undeniably, there are archetypes in the Harry Potter series; JKR has drawn upon a tradition of British Literature--and there is a heavy Christian influence: it's not preachy--I don't mean that--but she's drawing upon those patterns as well. Through five books, Snape has demonstrated the idea of the repenting sinner--or, if you're looking for an older type: the honorable man foresworn. While JKR is very good at the sleight of hand (or word, as it is), there's a limit. She's provided enough red herrings about Snape: as more details come out about him, it becomes clearer that, while he is an unpleasant person (to Harry), he is not an evil person.

He is the illustration of the theme of choices and redemption in the book. Should he, in the final two books, suddenly be revealed as a doublecrosser, whether working for Voldemort or himself, the theme is destroyed. Dumbledore, the champion of both ideas, would be a fool; all of his credibility would be lost. That alone would destroy the books. In addition, the theatic message would be that there is no such thing as redemption; you cannot change what you are. One choice eliminates all others; there is no going back. If Voldemort wins, with the help of Snape (besides being a foul conclusion to the Harry Potter series), then evil triumphs. If Snape is working to achieve his own ends, the it's worse: neither good nor evil wins; amorality does.

JKR has provided red herrings in the texts; she wants to keep the suspense and doubt alive. However, according to the structure of the novels that she herself has established, there doesn't seem to be any real basis for the notion that, suddenly, Snape is going to become the main character in the series and be revealed as the ultimate puppet master. My usual disclaimer: of course, JKR can do anything she pleases. However, such a sudden reversal will result in the collapse of the internal structure of the first five books. End result: the first five books will be classics; the final two will be a disappointing failure to fulfill early promise.

Great Post! :tu:

I agree with everyone: if the statement of Sirius is true, that no DE can ever leave "service" with Voldemort, then the idea of choice is "moot," and the entire premise of hope in the books is over for me.

I don't believe that Karkaroff, who seems rather weak, would be the only example of someone who has left Voldemort forever. JKR has shown over and over that most of the people around Voldemort have some type of sociopathic tendency or outright insanity (Barty Crouch Jr.), so where does that leave Snape? Clearly he had problems when he was young, but then, lots of people do, and lots of people reform and go on to lead productive lives.

To me, Snape is sane, though he isn't always kind. Was it you, Subtle, who described Snape as a "work-in-progress"? I'm sorry that I don't remember exactly, but to me that fits perfectly with what we know about him, and his relationship with Dumbledore.

The only way she could be seeing Snape as a bad guy is that he does psychological damage to his students. If she is following the Christian tenet of "anyone who hurts a child cannot enter the kingdom of heaven," then Snape might be in a bit of trouble. :huh: However, except for throwing Harry out of his office, he's never physically hurt a child - which is vastly different from Barty Crouch, Malfoy, Dolohov, Peter, Bella, or Voldemort who couldn't care less about children.

vickilind
May 15th, 2005, 6:05 am
Subtlescience:
vickilind--Therein lies the hidden danger of cleaning: too much time to think. Along with all of the other perils involved. : ) (I myself am currently doing laundry and watching NASCAR; it's an exciting life, but I try to bear up under the pressure.)

I get to do laundry tomorrow while watching pole day at Indy!

SS again
He is the illustration of the theme of choices and redemption in the book. Should he, in the final two books, suddenly be revealed as a doublecrosser, whether working for Voldemort or himself, the theme is destroyed. Dumbledore, the champion of both ideas, would be a fool; all of his credibility would be lost. That alone would destroy the books. In addition, the theatic message would be that there is no such thing as redemption; you cannot change what you are. One choice eliminates all others; there is no going back. If Voldemort wins, with the help of Snape (besides being a foul conclusion to the Harry Potter series), then evil triumphs. If Snape is working to achieve his own ends, the it's worse: neither good nor evil wins; amorality does.

Yes, this is my point. Snape is cast as the one seeking redemption. Plus, I agree, if DD has been fooled, the main character of the book to represent wisdom is shown a fool. I also like your calling Snape a puppet master, if we were to adhere to the PBS idea. It just doesn't follow with the theme being presented thus far.
JKR seems to be going to great lengths to show us how horrible it is when someone wants to "cleanse" the world; mention of how horrible things were in LVI, and also how mean people can be when they adhere to that belief; think Draco calling Hermione a mudblood. JKR seems to be trying to teach kids. She said she didn't start the series as a moral tale, but it evolved. Knowing that is the way it is directed just doesn't pan with the PBS agenda.
I see Snape as a man looking for more than just acceptance from DD. It means more to him than I think we realize. DD is a wise and righteous man and to have acceptance from someone like that touches Snape at a primal level. Yet, he hasn't "finished the race" or "gotten the prize", to paraphase Paul in Philippians. He is trying to do that.
I'm glad you all aren't angry with me for bringing up the you-know-what, but like Subtle said, cleaning can be dangerous. ;)

clkginny
May 15th, 2005, 7:06 am
vickilind--Therein lies the hidden danger of cleaning: too much time to think. Along with all of the other perils involved. : ) (I myself am currently doing laundry and watching NASCAR; it's an exciting life, but I try to bear up under the pressure.)
At least Kahne finally got his win.

The problem I have with Snape's being fundamentally evil--including working for his own agenda--is that it demands am amorality in the books. Undeniably, there are archetypes in the Harry Potter series; JKR has drawn upon a tradition of British Literature--and there is a heavy Christian influence: it's not preachy--I don't mean that--but she's drawing upon those patterns as well. Through five books, Snape has demonstrated the idea of the repenting sinner--or, if you're looking for an older type: the honorable man foresworn. While JKR is very good at the sleight of hand (or word, as it is), there's a limit. She's provided enough red herrings about Snape: as more details come out about him, it becomes clearer that, while he is an unpleasant person (to Harry), he is not an evil person.
That, I think, is the key. As Sirius said, the world isn't devided into good people and DE. Snape has his own code of honor, and he follows it. He is sarcastic, often intimidating, partial, and sometimes cruel, but he protects his charges, he fights for the good side in a dangerous position, he is a good person. He doesn't have to be a clone of Dumbledore to be a good person. All too often Snape is dismissed in the books, which I find insulting (to JK), because I can't see expending this much on a character to end up making them (essentially) pointless.

I look forward to seeing what other information can be gleaned about our dear, dark Potions Master.

vickilind
May 15th, 2005, 7:14 am
clkginny:
That, I think, is the key. As Sirius said, the world isn't devided into good people and DE. Snape has his own code of honor, and he follows it. He is sarcastic, often intimidating, partial, and sometimes cruel, but he protects his charges, he fights for the good side in a dangerous position, he is a good person. He doesn't have to be a clone of Dumbledore to be a good person.

I like your wording here, clk. Snape doesn't have to be a clone of DD to be a good person. Despite his distasteful qualities, which you mention, he is good, and looking for affirmation. Or redemption, which is what I am thinking he needs.

I find Snape one of the most interesting characters written in a long time. His appearance seems to match his persona; like you said, sarcastic, mean-spirited, and partial. But underneath, a good person, trying to fix what he screwed up.
I think it's important that he finds emotional people weak. "People who wear their heart on their sleeve" or something to that effect. He must have so much emotion boiling inside him, I wonder if, late at night, he screams and yells into his pillow? Or does he just have ulcers? Takes Prilosec? And Prosac?
Okay, I'm a little over the top here, but you know what I mean, right? How does someone deal with all that emotion?

Jaguarundi
May 15th, 2005, 8:12 am
I've never posted in this thread but I was glancing over it and saw some thing I wanted to respond to. I think that they've been discussed in the Deconstructing the Marauders as well.

Quote from subtle science:
He is the illustration of the theme of choices and redemption in the book. Should he, in the final two books, suddenly be revealed as a doublecrosser, whether working for Voldemort or himself, the theme is destroyed. Dumbledore, the champion of both ideas, would be a fool; all of his credibility would be lost. That alone would destroy the books. In addition, the theatic message would be that there is no such thing as redemption; you cannot change what you are. One choice eliminates all others; there is no going back.
Quote from Chievrefueil:
Yes, I agree with you and vickilind. You've smartly avoided the pureblood agenda thread, but one of my counter-arguments to whizbang was that if a Death Eater could never choose to leave Voldemort, it would negate the theme of choice in the books. Snape's redemption is very central to this theme.
Quote from Silver Ink Pot:
I agree with everyone: if the statement of Sirius is true, that no DE can ever leave "service" with Voldemort, then the idea of choice is "moot," and the entire premise of hope in the books is over for me.

I don't believe that Karkaroff, who seems rather weak, would be the only example of someone who has left Voldemort forever. JKR has shown over and over that most of the people around Voldemort have some type of sociopathic tendency or outright insanity (Barty Crouch Jr.), so where does that leave Snape? Clearly he had problems when he was young, but then, lots of people do, and lots of people reform and go on to lead productive lives.

I know that choice is an important, perhaps central theme, in the novels. Snape represents choice, he choose to work against Voldemort (I believe that Snape remains a Death Eater...for spying reasons not ideological), but he also represents responsibility. Snape once made a bad choice...he became a Death Eater...and he has to accept responsibility for making that choice. That is why he remains a DE (speculation alert!) because by spying as a DE he can accept responsibility for his bad choice and turn that choice into something more then simply wrong by helping against Voldemort.

That Snape chose to leave (at least ideological) Voldemort is great, he proves that he has choice, but unless he works against Voldemort he shows that he can't accept responsibility for his past choices. A person must be responsible for their choices or else choice losses all of it’s potency and becomes nothing more then the whim of the moment.

As to the statement by Sirius that “it’s a lifetime of service or death” and how it negates the theme of choice, if I’m reading the arguments correctly (and I may not be…so feel free to correct me), I believe the choice of the Death Eaters is never negated. If they chose wrongly (wrongly being not going along with the wishes of Voldemort) they are killed. They have the right to chose to be a Death Eater or chose not to be…one of the factors that decides for most is that Voldemort will kill them if they leave. Snape neatly side-stepped the issue by simply not telling Voldemort he was resigning. Snape is now a Death Eater by word (and tattoo) and not action.

Just my views on the matter.

ravenclaw_rox
May 15th, 2005, 8:25 am
snape rox

subtle science
May 15th, 2005, 2:07 pm
I have to admit that "PBS" threw me momentarily (Public Broadcasting System? Peanut Butter Something?)...hmph. Yeah. There are some places I will not go.

Time out for a shamelessly off-topic moment: Hooray for Kasey Kahne! Apologies to any Tony Stewart fans out there, but I felt rather like Harry under the Sorting Hat: "Please, not Tony Stewart; Please, not Stewart"!!! At least a Kahne win made up somewhat for the dismal evening for my #24......

Okay, I'm back.

Just a matter of semantics. Snape's not a DE any more: he's acting the part of one. He made the biggest mistake of his life by becoming one; however, he's using his knowledge of them in order to infiltrate them now--in fact, turning something evil into something good.

With the mention of his emotions, we're back to the empty fireplace image again. I often think that a major problem for Snape's character is that he must control himself and he must appear hostile, in order to maintain his cover for survival. The inevitable question becomes: how much is his real nature and how much is the act? And, of the possibly nastier aspects of his real nature, how in the world can he become a better person when, every day, he is required to maintain the facade of the snarky Dark git? His redemption comes a fairly high human price: he can't be seen as anything but the stereotype of a Dark Slytherin, whether that's what he himself wants to be or not. He can't have close friends--Hogwarts' policy is completely opposed to everything Voldemort stands for, so Snape can't be seen as overly friendly with anyone on staff. He can't be perceived as liking or going easy on Harry and Company. And, obviously, he can't point out all that he's done for the good.

Thus, the basic tension of the books--the supposed question of whether Snape is good or not. It results from the basic tension of the character himself, who has been placed in a nearly untenable position: no matter what the real person may be like, the outer person must be as off-putting as possible.

vickilind
May 15th, 2005, 5:40 pm
Originally posted by Subtlescience: With the mention of his emotions, we're back to the empty fireplace image again. I often think that a major problem for Snape's character is that he must control himself and he must appear hostile, in order to maintain his cover for survival. The inevitable question becomes: how much is his real nature and how much is the act? And, of the possibly nastier aspects of his real nature, how in the world can he become a better person when, every day, he is required to maintain the facade of the snarky Dark git? His redemption comes a fairly high human price: he can't be seen as anything but the stereotype of a Dark Slytherin, whether that's what he himself wants to be or not. He can't have close friends--Hogwarts' policy is completely opposed to everything Voldemort stands for, so Snape can't be seen as overly friendly with anyone on staff. He can't be perceived as liking or going easy on Harry and Company. And, obviously, he can't point out all that he's done for the good.

Brilliant SS! His redemption is coming at a huge price. Compare Snape having to maintain this facade to Sirius in Azkaban; Sirius was stunted emotionally, it shows in his lack of maturity. Snape is a prisoner of his situation; he cannot change or people will begin to wonder. That shows me how important to Snape that what he is doing is so vital to right the wrongs he committed. He is voluntarily putting himself in prison, so to speak. Makes him noble to a degree, doesn't it? And who would have thunk it?
I do think that some of his personality quirks are so ingrained that he would have a hard time changing; when someone uses sarcasm as a weapon, like Snape does, it becomes part of them. I wonder, though, if he didn't have to keep up appearances, would he be a bit more like Minerva in dealing with the students? Less one-sided? I do believe his disdain for Harry is genuine, but he reconsiles it with the fact that, somehow, in this irritating, rule-breaking pain-in-the-butt boy lies his redemption. I wonder if we will ever have the chance to see him after everything is done, trying to change some of his personality?

I'm glad my post seems to have sparked some interest. Everyone on this thread (and the Deconstructing thread) brings something so intellectual and I often feel like I'm just not up to snuff. No college degree or anything like that, so I can't quote English lit or Eriksons theory (but I do read the links!), but I'm not as dumb as I think I am...

subtle science
May 15th, 2005, 7:49 pm
Well, vickilind, I'll throw in my two cents and say that I enjoy reading your posts very much; I'm very glad that you've thrown your lot in with Decon and the Dev of Sev. Besides, you watch racing--even if the cars have no fenders!--so obviously, you must be a person of exceptional discernment!!!!! : ) !!!

I do think that, deep down, Snape is a rather nasty person: bullheaded, sarcastic, judgmental, harsh...a logical product of his environment, from what we see of his childhood. But one of the reasons I'd like to see this character survive to the end of the series is to see what happens when it's all over and he no longer has to be the snarky git. Will there be a change? Will there be any indication that he finally would have the chance to? Or will JKR leave him a heroic, bitter, sarcastic git?

vickilind
May 15th, 2005, 7:58 pm
You said snarky! I love that word; it is the definition of Dr House (my fave TV show)
Danika Patrick just qualified in 3rd position at Indy! **** that wiggle at the first turn; she could have been on the pole!
And who needs fenders? I like speed!!!!!

Originally posted by Subtlescince: I do think that, deep down, Snape is a rather nasty person: bullheaded, sarcastic, judgmental, harsh...a logical product of his environment, from what we see of his childhood. But one of the reasons I'd like to see this character survive to the end of the series is to see what happens when it's all over and he no longer has to be the snarky git. Will there be a change? Will there be any indication that he finally would have the chance to? Or will JKR leave him a heroic, bitter, sarcastic git?
I, too, hope we will get a chance to see Snape begin changing, but it doesn't seem too likely, given that the series will end with the kids moving on with their lives, leaving the school. But maybe, there will be an inkling? One can always hope.
Thanks for your kind words SS.

Mcpherson
May 15th, 2005, 8:17 pm
But one of the reasons I'd like to see this character survive to the end of the series is to see what happens when it's all over and he no longer has to be the snarky git. Will there be a change? Will there be any indication that he finally would have the chance to? Or will JKR leave him a heroic, bitter, sarcastic git?

Hmm, this is a very good question, subtle! :clap:
I guess there are two ways at looking at Snape's sarcasm depending on when did he grow sarcastic. It is possible that he had to use irony and his sharp mind in order to defend himself at Hogwarts, as wand dueling is not always possible or needed and a nice retort can do wonders. We don't know much about Snape at school apart from the bullying scene and it tells us more about the Marauders than Severus. But if he really was sarcastic when at Hogwarts that would mean that this type of behaviour lies very deep in his soul and is a vital part of his entity-- it is something impossible to block or rid of. However, there aren't that many sarcastic young people, as it requires maturity and even a bit sophisticated mind.

On the other hand, Snape might have developed the ability after leaving Hogwarts, after joining Voldemort and being a DE. As sarcasm is a satirical remark uttered with some degree of scorn or contempt, Snape might have turned into a bitter, sarcastic person upon understanding his mistake. Sarcasm could have been his only weapon when slowly realising what did Severus do wrong. This is pure speculation, but maybe he didn't go to Dumbledore right away when he decided to change sides, but he probably was thinking over what had happened and why does he not fit in.

If Snape's behaviour will change* depends mostly on when did he start to act in this manner--if it is something gained later in life, there is hope that he will change, but actually sarcasm is the thing that I really like about Snape...

*obviously If he survives

RemusLupinFan
May 15th, 2005, 9:36 pm
I find Snape one of the most interesting characters written in a long time. His appearance seems to match his persona; like you said, sarcastic, mean-spirited, and partial. But underneath, a good person, trying to fix what he screwed up.Well said. :) I too agree with the idea the Snape is a “work in progress”. He is someone who does try very hard to do what is expected of him, and he tries very hard to earn redemption. He certainly isn’t perfect- he does experience some setbacks and regressions to less mature behavior (ie when he speaks with Sirius and when he continues to hold a grudge against the Marauders), but overall, Snape is a good person. I agree completely that Snape is one of the key representatives of choice within the series. His choice was one of the hardest to make: by leaving the service of Voldemort due to reasons of conscience (aka he found their morals to be against his own) despite the threat of death if he had been found out was a very brave thing to do. Therefore, I do believe that if he were to be revealed as a traitor, this would undermine everything that has been built upon his character thus far. By taking responsibility for his bad choice in the past, Snape demonstrates that he has chosen what is right rather than what is easy.

As to the statement by Sirius that “it’s a lifetime of service or death” and how it negates the theme of choice, if I’m reading the arguments correctly (and I may not be…so feel free to correct me), I believe the choice of the Death Eaters is never negated.This statement kind of reminds me of another saying (which for the life of me, I can’t remember where it is from). It’s something to the nature of, ‘when given a choice between two paths, I took the third’. What I mean to say here is that when Voldemort thinks he’s giving the Death Eaters only two choices- serve me for life or die- there is always another way out that Voldemort may not have anticipated, namely what Snape did.

I do think that some of his personality quirks are so ingrained that he would have a hard time changing; when someone uses sarcasm as a weapon, like Snape does, it becomes part of them.I agree, it appears to me like his defenses as it were have become a part of him. I imagine too that he must have undergone quite a bit during the time he was a Death Eater, so perhaps this also factors into his true personality in some way.

I do believe his disdain for Harry is genuine, but he reconsiles it with the fact that, somehow, in this irritating, rule-breaking pain-in-the-butt boy lies his redemption.:tu: Excellent point. I do think this fact is the source of some of the Snape’s frustration. For one thing, the fact that he has to deal with Harry so much on a day to day basis when he views Harry as an extension of James must frustrate him. To have to teach this boy who (to Snape) is just like his father must be a real pain in the butt for Snape. Also, to have to put up with the belief that Harry seems to get away with much more than he deserves is probably frustrating- I’ll bet sometimes he wishes Harry was in his House so he could give him a more severe punishment. And also the fact that everyone else seems to like Harry, especially because of his fame (many of the students in particular hold this view) must also infuriate Snape at times. But yet, he must put up with all of it. Having to teach Occlumency to Harry must have been painful too, but still, Snape tries his hardest to teach him despite Harry's attitude. The fact that he can at times treat Harry unfairly (due to keeping up appearances) must feel like his only salvation sometimes.

subtle science
May 16th, 2005, 12:18 am
I'll venture that, based upon his inarticulate response to the insults in SWM, that Snape's sarcasm is an acquired talent. He reacts silently to James and Sirius--going for the wand, a physical retaliation, long before he manages to get any words out. When he does speak, it's incoherent.

And, now that I type this--I realize it goes back to what we were just discussing, about his rare physical outburst against Harry after he drags him out of the Pensieve. Snape does revert to basic behavior--and we don't have to go all the way back to his childhood (albeit that still is a likely influence) to find the pattern at work.

*shamelessly off topic once again--
vickilind: Why, you need fenders, darlin'--how else are you gonna move'em outa your way? After all, rubbin's racin'!
*Hugh Laurie* I know people are watching House; however, you're the first I've found!!! *stunned* I knew you had good taste!

AngelRuse
May 16th, 2005, 12:48 am
There are some excellent, excellent points in this thread and I'm so glad I found it. Last night I got to reading some of JK's words on Snape, IE: "you shouldn't think he's nice..." and other various things that seemed to hint towards a bad end for him, when I read these things it troubled me. Of course it's all just a story, but you know, the worlds we create are important, maybe not cataclysmically, but in who we are inside. If Snape does not find redemption it will be a painful thing for me.

I do agree that such a thing would undermine what we know. We have this character that's nasty, horrible, in desperate need of a serious spankin', but we see another side to him that just barely peeks out. He didn't have to save Harry to repay James. He could have just shrugged it off and thought, "Yeah well, bugger that. I didn't ask for you to keep me from Werewolf!Lupin. Your mistake." But he didn't. He chose to save Harry as a way of repayment of this debt. This is the evidence of someone that may not get how to be Joe Noble, but that wants to at least maintain within themselves knowing they did the right thing.

(I've since read a few arguements as to why this would be self-serving, but I still stand by my thought that he didn't have to, to maintain appearances). Other teachers were there, at least Quirrell (who to the unknowing eye was just another teacher) and Madam Hooch and McGonagall, none of which acted (that I know of), thereby giving enough reason for Snape to claim to be just as ignorant as they were to any investigator, including Dumbledore.

And too, as Subtle Science said, Snape's loss of redemption makes Dumbledore the fool. He trusts Snape and while Dumbledore has been shown to be wrong on occassion, I just don't see him being so terribly wrong about this. This story is about Harry Potter learning life's lessons, coming of age, not Dumbledore. His mistakes with Harry served the plot, served to teach Harry a lesson about who he trusts and how far. Snape going bad teaches Harry nothing but that he was right all along. I just don't see the "Well, I told you so, Professor," scene being done.


*tries to avoid becoming speculative in spirit of the thread's purpose* Sowwy.

vickilind
May 16th, 2005, 4:52 am
Originally posted by Subtlescience:
*shamelessly off topic once again--
vickilind: Why, you need fenders, darlin'--how else are you gonna move'em outa your way? After all, rubbin's racin'!

No, going fast is racing!!! Real fast, so fast you need wings to help with downforce. So fast, well, you get the idea.

SS again:
*Hugh Laurie* I know people are watching House; however, you're the first I've found!!! *stunned* I knew you had good taste!

House is so awesome!!! I was blown away when I realized Prince George was actually Greg House! Viva la Snark!! And as for good taste, they say great minds think a like?! Hmmmmmm.

Okay, is anyone else having problems with the forum? I had trouble logging on this evening and then when I did, it asked me to sign in. Also, my screen is set funny. Any ideas?
Grrr

StephyJ_83
May 16th, 2005, 5:03 am
Okay, is anyone else having problems with the forum? I had trouble logging on this evening and then when I did, it asked me to sign in. Also, my screen is set funny. Any ideas?
Grrr
Maybe your cookies got erased or something. Whenever my cookies and temp files are cleared, I have to reset it all.

So, I'm new to this thread . . . what is it all about?

clkginny
May 16th, 2005, 6:29 am
Time out for a shamelessly off-topic moment: Hooray for Kasey Kahne! Apologies to any Tony Stewart fans out there, but I felt rather like Harry under the Sorting Hat: "Please, not Tony Stewart; Please, not Stewart"!!! At least a Kahne win made up somewhat for the dismal evening for my #24...…
Hmmm…echoes my feelings about Biffle. At least Jeff didn’t fall too far down in the points. *sigh* Fingers crossed on that drive for five.

Thus, the basic tension of the books--the supposed question of whether Snape is good or not. It results from the basic tension of the character himself, who has been placed in a nearly untenable position: no matter what the real person may be like, the outer person must be as off-putting as possible.
Ah yes, and we’ve discussed the pitfalls of being made to play that role. How much has that role (not that I believe it is all a role) affected the Harry/Snape dynamics? Necessarily, a lot. As much as we hope for some kind of understanding (not even reconciliation, but understanding), it can’t come until (is this an echo?) Harry learns to see beyond the surface, and Snape learns to let go of his grievances.

Snape is a prisoner of his situation; he cannot change or people will begin to wonder. That shows me how important to Snape that what he is doing is so vital to right the wrongs he committed. He is voluntarily putting himself in prison, so to speak. Makes him noble to a degree, doesn't it?
I love the way you put that!

I do think that, deep down, Snape is a rather nasty person: bullheaded, sarcastic, judgmental, harsh...a logical product of his environment, from what we see of his childhood. But one of the reasons I'd like to see this character survive to the end of the series is to see what happens when it's all over and he no longer has to be the snarky git. Will there be a change? Will there be any indication that he finally would have the chance to? Or will JKR leave him a heroic, bitter, sarcastic git?
I hope he doesn’t change too much. I enjoy his character (although some mellowing would be acceptable) as is, and there is nothing wrong with a dark hero.

Trisha
May 16th, 2005, 10:59 am
...hopping and skipping to the front of the line....

You said snarky! I love that word; it is the definition of Dr House (my fave TV show)
vickilind -- Yes! Hugh Laurie in House, Ed Asner in Lou Grant, Danny DeVito in Taxi, the list of sarcastic television personalities is strong. And in most cases, it's played for laughs.
But Snape isn't funny. Not to the many students who suffered through his classes. Not to Harry and his friends. Not to the Marauders. It would appear that his one defender is Dumbledore, for reasons not yet specified.

Snape wears his aggressively nasty streak like an overcoat. The question is, is it an act? And if so, why?
If it's an act, is he playing Draco and the other Slytherins? Were all the years of put-downs, one-sided punishments and verbal abuses in the classroom just a set up for the day when Harry finally arrived at Hogwarts?
Was this code that the young wizard would have no ally in the potions master?

Or is Snape playing the members of Order of the Phoenix, by pretending to be reformed?

One person he is not fooling, is Dumbledore. I see loyalty there, and a great deal of trust on Dumbledore's part. Snape does put himself at great personal risk to defend the headmaster, especially so when revealing the Dark Mark to Fudge in GofF:
Snape strode forward, past Dumbledore, pulling up the left sleeve of his robes as he went. He stuck out his forearm and showed it to Fudge, who recoiled.
"There," said Snape harshly. "There. The Dark Mark...." GofF, pg 709

But does that mean he supports the Order of the Phoenix as well? Or will his loyalty unravel if Dumbledore was to leave the scene permanently?
After all, that would mean the only person standing between him and Voldemort would be one highly-excitable teenage boy, who still hasn't forgiven Snape for his godfather's death.
Snape still has decisions to make -- and keep. That's what makes him interesting, that devil on his shoulder pointing out the path of least resistance.

subtle science
May 16th, 2005, 12:10 pm
StephyJ_83--Welcome. We're pretty much what the thread title says--trying to work out the how's and why's of Snape's development in the novels.

And we seem to have just discovered that the enjoyment of dissecting Snape's character is closely related to the Need For Speed!!!! Go figure.

clkginny--Speaking of that: do I perceive a Not-Biffle-Fan and a 24 Fan? More demonstrations of good taste! : )



Snape isn't following the path of least resistance at all; that would be staying with Voldemort and remaining a DE. In fact, he appears to have chosen the path of the most resistance. How much easier, even, to switch sides and simply take on the job of teacher at Hogwarts--and skip the bit about working as a spy. There has to be a less dangerous, less taxing role to play in the Order (maybe he could relieve Molly of the endless cooking chores--he's a Potions Master; obviously the man can read a recipe).

I suspect that his attitude as a teacher is not all an act--albeit he must perform for the Slytherins that are currently in his class. However, he does have a tough reputation in the school that was developed long before Harry, Draco, et al, arrived (although the Weasleys aren't the most reliable in this regard; and Snape wasn't bad enough for Molly Weasley to have any problem with his teaching hordes of her children). His first day of Potions class reveals a burned-out teacher; his opening speech has nothing to do with Harry and hence is a goldmine of real information about Snape. And we've just recently considered here the effect that teaching former fellow students--who knew of SWM--his first year must have had.

If Snape only adheres to the side of good because of Dumbledore, then he hasn't gone through a moral change; he's just exchanged one absolute authority for another. It's the same problem I have with his switching sides only for Lily's sake--or any other love interest: he would be switching for someone else's sake, not his own. Considering the risk he took, it would be a fairly weak motivation: he's not going through all of this because he thinks it's right, but because it makes Dumbledore approve. While I think that Dumbledore's approval is of immense importance to Snape, the fact that he does disagree with him in PoA indicates that his motive is not a blind following of Dumbledore's lead. He is working with Dumbledore, not for him.

The people who distrust Snape are not exactly a strong group: Moody, who suspects everyone and is paranoid; Ron; Sirius; and Bill, about whom we know little to nothing. On the other side are Lupin, Hermione, Dumbledore, McGonagall, and Molly--that speaks rather loudly right there.

clkginny
May 16th, 2005, 2:08 pm
clkginny--Speaking of that: do I perceive a Not-Biffle-Fan and a 24 Fan?
Got it in one! (I wasn't that obvious, was I? ;-) )

If Snape only adheres to the side of good because of Dumbledore, then he hasn't gone through a moral change; he's just exchanged one absolute authority for another. It's the same problem I have with his switching sides only for Lily's sake--or any other love interest: he would be switching for someone else's sake, not his own. Considering the risk he took, it would be a fairly weak motivation: he's not going through all of this because he thinks it's right, but because it makes Dumbledore approve. While I think that Dumbledore's approval is of immense importance to Snape, the fact that he does disagree with him in PoA indicates that his motive is not a blind following of Dumbledore's lead. He is working with Dumbledore, not for him.
It is hard to concieve of Snape having gone through all of this for less than strong motivation. Risking death and torture should have a fairly strong belief behind it, and doing it because "Dumbledore said to" doesn't sound like a strong motivation. Not only does it negate any value for the lesson that Snape is theoretically teaching, it makes Snape stupid, frankly. No matter which way I twist Snape's character, I can't justify him being stupid.

The people who distrust Snape are not exactly a strong group: Moody, who suspects everyone and is paranoid; Ron; Sirius; and Bill, about whom we know little to nothing. On the other side are Lupin, Hermione, Dumbledore, McGonagall, and Molly--that speaks rather loudly right there.
Once again, you make the point much better than I can, Subtle!

silver ink pot
May 16th, 2005, 3:42 pm
Snape isn't following the path of least resistance at all; that would be staying with Voldemort and remaining a DE. In fact, he appears to have chosen the path of the most resistance. How much easier, even, to switch sides and simply take on the job of teacher at Hogwarts--and skip the bit about working as a spy. There has to be a less dangerous, less taxing role to play in the Order (maybe he could relieve Molly of the endless cooking chores--he's a Potions Master; obviously the man can read a recipe).

Snape's chef's hat aside (where is Grrliz these days?) . . . this is an awesome point! Snape doesn't do, dare I say, what is easy, but what is right. Snape is a spy because that is his talent, and he isn't afraid to use it, which shows his courage. He could help with the cooking, though! :p


If Snape only adheres to the side of good because of Dumbledore, then he hasn't gone through a moral change; he's just exchanged one absolute authority for another. It's the same problem I have with his switching sides only for Lily's sake--or any other love interest: he would be switching for someone else's sake, not his own. Considering the risk he took, it would be a fairly weak motivation: he's not going through all of this because he thinks it's right, but because it makes Dumbledore approve. While I think that Dumbledore's approval is of immense importance to Snape, the fact that he does disagree with him in PoA indicates that his motive is not a blind following of Dumbledore's lead. He is working with Dumbledore, not for him.

Excellent point! Sometimes when Snape says, "Yes, Headmaster," it enters my mind that it is a very subservient thing to say. He sounds like a DE when he says that, and it seems demeaning in a way and it almost makes me cringe. However, we know that Snape isn't subservient to Dumbledore on a regular basis. He serves Dumbledore because he sees the logic of the way Dumbledore lives and works. If Snape always kowtowed to Dumbledore he would seem pathetic and just another version of Peter. Instead, Snape is definitely in control of his own circumstances for good or bad, and he is still making his own choices.

The people who distrust Snape are not exactly a strong group: Moody, who suspects everyone and is paranoid; Ron; Sirius; and Bill, about whom we know little to nothing. On the other side are Lupin, Hermione, Dumbledore, McGonagall, and Molly--that speaks rather loudly right there.

:tu: I love reading such good points first thing in the morning! Thank you! :)

severa78
May 16th, 2005, 4:20 pm
Sometimes when Snape says, "Yes, Headmaster," it enters my mind that it is a very subservient thing to say.I always read that line as if Snape is ironically showing Dumbledore he's being treated like a servant and doesn't like it, but will do it nontheless. When Snape just obeys, agreeing with Dumbledore, he doesn't utter a word (See the end of GoF in Moody's office).
If Snape only adheres to the side of good because of Dumbledore, then he hasn't gone through a moral change; he's just exchanged one absolute authority for another. It's the same problem I have with his switching sides only for Lily's sake--or any other love interest: he would be switching for someone else's sake, not his own. Considering the risk he took, it would be a fairly weak motivation: he's not going through all of this because he thinks it's right, but because it makes Dumbledore approve.:agree: I agree, but the idea Trisha had urges a thought: Or will his loyalty unravel if Dumbledore was to leave the scene permanently?I think Snape made a moral change, but he's still a "work-in-progress", so a huge shock and change in balance as DD's premature death could risk undoing his change. It would be a turning point, when he'll need to reinforce his choice in the face of a greater yet danger.

BTW: I loved all the poetry a few pages back.. there was something I wanted to comment on, but I need some time to put a coherent post together. In the meantime, just a bunch of random observations

The only hope, or else despair
Lies in the choice of pyre or pyre--
To be redeemed from fire by fire.That reminded me of the Prophecy. Harry is Hope, and LV is despair, and the choice is between the two. Snape chose to be redeemed from fire (LV) by fire (Harry) and it is a "trial of fire" for him, considering he loaths the boy.
Ash on an old man's sleeve
Is all the ash the burnt roses leave.As I said in the past version, I have no knowledge of English Lit., but the line rang a bell. It reminded me of "fools who wear their hearts on their sleeves", and also of the Dark Mark being "burnt" on the wrist (under the sleeve). I still don't know exactly what to make of it, but maybe someone else can, once this similarity is pointed out
A natural phenomena which represents fire is lightningThis reinforces the above comment about both Harry and LV being "fire". The scar is shaped as a bolt of lightning!

silver ink pot
May 16th, 2005, 4:42 pm
There are some excellent, excellent points in this thread and I'm so glad I found it. Last night I got to reading some of JK's words on Snape, IE: "you shouldn't think he's nice..." and other various things that seemed to hint towards a bad end for him, when I read these things it troubled me. Of course it's all just a story, but you know, the worlds we create are important, maybe not cataclysmically, but in who we are inside. If Snape does not find redemption it will be a painful thing for me.

I do agree that such a thing would undermine what we know. We have this character that's nasty, horrible, in desperate need of a serious spankin', but we see another side to him that just barely peeks out. He didn't have to save Harry to repay James. He could have just shrugged it off and thought, "Yeah well, bugger that. I didn't ask for you to keep me from Werewolf!Lupin. Your mistake." But he didn't. He chose to save Harry as a way of repayment of this debt. This is the evidence of someone that may not get how to be Joe Noble, but that wants to at least maintain within themselves knowing they did the right thing.

(I've since read a few arguements as to why this would be self-serving, but I still stand by my thought that he didn't have to, to maintain appearances). Other teachers were there, at least Quirrell (who to the unknowing eye was just another teacher) and Madam Hooch and McGonagall, none of which acted (that I know of), thereby giving enough reason for Snape to claim to be just as ignorant as they were to any investigator, including Dumbledore.

And too, as Subtle Science said, Snape's loss of redemption makes Dumbledore the fool. He trusts Snape and while Dumbledore has been shown to be wrong on occassion, I just don't see him being so terribly wrong about this. This story is about Harry Potter learning life's lessons, coming of age, not Dumbledore. His mistakes with Harry served the plot, served to teach Harry a lesson about who he trusts and how far. Snape going bad teaches Harry nothing but that he was right all along. I just don't see the "Well, I told you so, Professor," scene being done.


*tries to avoid becoming speculative in spirit of the thread's purpose* Sowwy.

Welcome, Angelruse! Great first post! :)
http://bestsmileys.com/welcome/8.gif

I think your post summed up my feelings exactly. I too have been rather confused from time to time by JKR's statements concerning Snape. I liked her first statement that we ought to "keep an eye on him" because it hinted that he wasn't what he seemed, and that has been rather true since Book One.

JKR has said that she wouldn't have a "man in black" who is clearly the bad guy and just say, "Shoot Him." She has also said that "evil is attractive," and then she proceeds to point out all the flaws in Snape's appearance.

For many of us on this thread, Snape's Worst Memory has been the catalyst to understanding what JKR's true opinion of him is. He is flawed, but he has a past that might explain much of his anger. Showing him upside down in that scene is somehow symbolic of "overturning" Harry's opinion of him, which he agonizes over after seeing the memory. Snape becoming a key to understanding James, Lily, and the Marauders shows what an important player Snape is in the past books and in books to come. The fact that Harry suddenly has sympathy for Snape, even after being thrown out of his office - the worst outburst they have ever had - is indicative of Harry's compassion, but also his complicated opinion of Snape. And unfortunately, they may be back to square one after the death of Sirius, but Harry has a conscience and will have to square what he saw in the Pensieve with the anger he now feels toward Snape.

If forgivness and redemption are themes, and "Dumbledore isn't stupid," as Hermione so aptly points out, then Snape has to have a redemptive side.

AngelRuse
May 16th, 2005, 6:38 pm
Thank you for the welcome!!! :)

And you're definitely right. Evil is attractive. Our glimpse of what Voldemort began as in Chamber of Secrets, is of an attractive, reasonably smart young man that probably had a certain charm to him. You see this charm bleed through in how he talks later on, even when he's being frightening and evil, I think. Perhaps confidence might be a better word.

Snape is not described in such a way and you're right, attractiveness is a classic way to look at evil as being pretty, what you want to be. Voldemort's and probably Lucius' attractiveness and charm are probably what made him prime to join the DE in the first place. And wanting to join to belong, assuming that's why Snape joined--to be accepted in some way, while that can be a strong emotion to bait, is like building a house on sand. It's not a foundation as strong as true belief in a cause. How I wish we could have seen more of Snape's childhood! But that glimmer was enough to at least suspect acceptance was why he joined the DE's.

But yes, I do recall JK wrote that scene in SWM to make Harry learn something new about his preconceptions of Snape and while he learns, we learn so to speak, if we couldn't spot the glimmer of the want to be good beforehand. :)

The Black Adder
May 16th, 2005, 6:52 pm
If Snape only adheres to the side of good because of Dumbledore, then he hasn't gone through a moral change; he's just exchanged one absolute authority for another. It's the same problem I have with his switching sides only for Lily's sake--or any other love interest: he would be switching for someone else's sake, not his own. Considering the risk he took, it would be a fairly weak motivation: he's not going through all of this because he thinks it's right, but because it makes Dumbledore approve. While I think that Dumbledore's approval is of immense importance to Snape, the fact that he does disagree with him in PoA indicates that his motive is not a blind following of Dumbledore's lead. He is working with Dumbledore, not for him.
I've always believed Snape's motivation to be utterly personal, and certainly not ideological. My first belief was that simple revenge alone could account for his switch. Can you see Snape thanking Voldy for being merciful (like Avery) after a Crucio curse? :no: Though now I do think his motivation is more complicated than that. More layered.

But neither do I think he's altruistic. At least not purely altruistic. I played with this in my fanfic "Gifts of Light". It isn't a remorseful Snape who approaches DD to change sides, but someone who is still struggling with what he believes. He isn't shy about pointing out the hypocracy in the so-called side of good. He doesn't come to DD with his hat in his hands (even though he's aware that DD is his only hope). But he comes knowing that he is something that DD needs. I think it's a possible way to read Snape.

Excellent point! Sometimes when Snape says, "Yes, Headmaster," it enters my mind that it is a very subservient thing to say. He sounds like a DE when he says that, and it seems demeaning in a way and it almost makes me cringe. However, we know that Snape isn't subservient to Dumbledore on a regular basis. He serves Dumbledore because he sees the logic of the way Dumbledore lives and works. If Snape always kowtowed to Dumbledore he would seem pathetic and just another version of Peter. Instead, Snape is definitely in control of his own circumstances for good or bad, and he is still making his own choices.
I think this is Snape's way of keeping his confusing role-playing and loyalties straight. Voldemort is his Master, but Dumbledore is his Headmaster. ;)

subtle science
May 16th, 2005, 7:29 pm
Another reason to go digging...I have to look up specifics of when and how Snape says, "Yes, Headmaster." Because it also could be conceding to Dumbledore's authority: a little swallowing of pride in giving way--he may disagree, but he trusts Dumbledore, in the final cut. Even if he's grudging about giving up to Dumbledore. Must go digging......

Severa78--Eliot's poetry does tend to make one's head spin; but I was amazed, when I looked back at it, to see so many lines that could be related to HP; I initially was just looking for the basic fire imagery.

The Black Adder--I do think that Snape eventually rejected the ideology. I think, too, that contact with Dumbledore introduces and increases the concep of altruism--and again: he's not getting anything out of the spying...except his own sense of satisfaction and a lot of suspicion....

And random last thought--The idea of evil being attractive is quite a Romantic notion.................

shadowdogs
May 16th, 2005, 10:27 pm
I think that Snape and DD have a whole language of words and actions that they use only on each other. Like Snape's repeated application for the DADA job. He's always testing DD. That is, he really beleives in Dumbledore, but at the same time, it's in his nature to make sure he examines DD's decisions on a case by case basis, especially since he knows what his weaknesses are. Maybe there are times Snape talks DD into something, and we don't happen to see it. DD wouldn't keep him so close unless his dissent were in some way informed and valuable, would he?

When they argue, it seems like Snape is frequently annoyed/angry about DD's decisions, but willing to acknowledge that DD is better at thinking things through in a clear way. Probably, he's been the beneficiary of an questionable decision by DD... When he gives in to DD, he has an "All, right, you win this round" quality.

sub8rosa
May 16th, 2005, 11:20 pm
Hello! This appears to be a really interesting thread. I have not had the time to read through it all yet, so I am just going to jump in here:
I think Snape made a moral change, but he's still a "work-in-progress", so a huge shock and change in balance as DD's premature death could risk undoing his change. It would be a turning point, when he'll need to reinforce his choice in the face of a greater yet danger.
I don't really know that I agree with Snape being a work in progress or that he would be lost without DD. It would seem that he has made his decision on whether or not to be a member of the OOTP for good. He would probably not be putting his life on the line for a cause that he does not believe in. Furthermore, DD puts a huge amount of faith in him. I do not believe that DD would put that amount of faith into a man that might revert back to his old ways with the flip of a switch. As for Snape being lost without the mentoring of DD, as has been said before, Snape stands up to DD on some decisions. He would not be assertive enough to speak out like that if he was still lost within his own mind. He who has a compass is not completely lost, no matter the thickness of the woods.

As for evil being attractive and JKR's talk of Snape not being attractive, something about Snape is apparently pretty attractive. Physically, no, Snape is no Adonis. He does, however, have something that appeals to a person. I think that something is being able to decide on one's own what is right, being able to admit major mistakes in those decisions and try to make up for them (though grudgingly at times), and acting on those decisions (you have mentioned him picking up Harry when no one else would). If you need more proof that Snape is somehow attractive...look at the number of Snape related sigs. around here. Maybe JKR was trying to draw attention to the fact that there is more to attractiveness than physical appearance. If this means that Snape could really be evil...I would miss the rebel with a cause, but I have learned a lesson in judging humans, fictional or real.

As a side note...I have often thought about T.S. Eliot and a link to HP, usually concerning The Hollow Men, but that is a theme for another thread.

Norbertha
May 16th, 2005, 11:56 pm
I'm so behind again, I'm sorry!!!

About Snape, fire and eyes:

We were talking about Snape's fireplace. which is describes as "dark and empty", and how it resembles the description of his eyes. I went and looked for other references to fire and eyes, and found these, which all concern Dumbledore:

'Yet again, Cornelius, I tell you that taking Hagrid away will not help in the slightest,' said Dumbledore. His blue eyes were full of a fire Harry had never seen before.
'And what exactly did you want with me, Lucius?' said Dumbledore. He spoke politely, but the fire was still blazing in his blue eyes.
Instinctively, Harry looked at Dumbledore, who smiled faintly, the firelight glancing off his half-moon spectacles.

I don't know that to make of the last one, but in the first two, the fire seems to indicate emotion - anger, I guess, and strong disagreement. Snape is sometimes angry too, but his eyes don't blaze then. When Snape feels emotion, his eyes often glitter or glint. Er, I don't know where I'm going with this ... I think the fire shows the power that lies in Dumbledore, which could be released if he weren't so good at controlling himself and being polite even when he's angry.

And while we're - I mean I am -- on the subject of Snape and emotions: I found an instance of Snape smiling something which I think, actually, is a real smile, believe it or not:

'Sir,' said Malfoy loudly, 'Sir, why don't you apply for the Headmaster's job?'
'Now, no, Malfoy,' said Snape, though he couldn't suppress a thin-lipped smile.
He couldn't suppress it - so it must be real. Gosh, I didn't think that man knew how to smile for real! :p


I also noticed that Tom Riddle's diary self is described rather like Snape when he smiles:

Riddle was still watching him - twirling Harry's wand between his long fingers.
'Thanks,' said Harry, stretching out his hand for it. A smile curled the corners of Riddle's mouth. He continued to stare at Harry, twirling the wand idly.

And Riddle's eyes glint too, just like Snape's:
'The diary,' siad Riddle. 'My diary. Little Ginny's been writing in it for months and months, telling me all her pitiful worries and woes: how her brothers tease her, how she ahd to come to school with second-hand robes and books, how -' Riddle's eyes glinted '- how she didn't think famous good, great, Harry Potter would ever like her (...)'

I think he sounds remarkably like Snape in that his eyes glint, and he taunts Harry for being famous, good and great.

Eek, I usually defend Snape, and now I'm comparing him to Voldemort! Time to go to bed, I think!

subtle science
May 17th, 2005, 1:13 am
Well, I've washed the dirt off after my digging. Guess what? I couldn't find a single instance of Snape's saying, "Yes, Headmaster." It's like the idea that Snape always disagrees with Dumbledore--he doesn't: only in CoS (the arrival by car) and PoA (trusting Lupin). Chalk it up to a Casablanca moment: nobody ever says, "Play it again, Sam," either : ) ! Snape never says anything; if, as in PoA, he's still angry, he just shuts up--and twice walks out on Dumbledore. As I said earlier, I vote that that action is a bit of self-censorship, to avoid saying what he would surely regret to Dumbledore. In GoF, when he agrees with Dumbledore, he nods (the second time he gets orders, when he's told to get Fudge and tell Fudge where Dumbeldore will be; the first time, he just goes), and he says "I am" when Dumbledore asks him if he's prepared, at the end. Those are his most demonstrative responses.

He invariably addresses Dumbledore as either Headmaster or Professor. I didn't even see "Professor Dumbledore" used (although I wasn't specifically looking for that)--just the stand-alone title. Thoroughly, absolutely, and unfailingly formal. Even when Dumbledore is irritating him in PoA.

Interesting quotes, Norbertha....Hmmm...the fire within.....

As for the Voldemort connection...you know, crazed Potter-maniac friend of mine (in other words, just one of the usual readers) a while back tossed out the question, "Do you think Snape and Voldemort are related somehow?" We were discussing that odd "mistake" that JKR wouldn't allow to be corrected, when Riddle is called the last "ancestor" of Slytherin (by none other than Dumbledore--CoS, pp. 332-333, US paper). We reached no conclusion, other than that 'mistake' is extremely weird. And intriguing..........

eigerjoch
May 17th, 2005, 1:54 am
not been here for a week so taken me a good hour to catch up. which I greatly appreciate as have had a thoroughly rotten day so didn't half need some escapism :)
probably be re-iterating (not very well) things already mentioned but I'll try anyway... apologies for forgetting who posted what.

I liked the 'noble' comment, about the character Snape has to keep up all the time; is there anybody he can talk to truly? Even Dumbledore? Does he completely unbend with Dumbledore and show his true self, or does he instinctively stay withdrawn? Obviously there's no need for him to act anything with Dumbledore, but you wonder if with his past self-preservation of a more emotional kind would prevent him ever opening up to anyone.

made me think of a great quote from a John Le Carre book I was just reading too- about the nature of spies. sorry I can't quote verbatim but am so shattered can't face hunting for it. But, the jist was, a spy's role is uniquely alone and comfortless. The role he puts on has no solace or comfort in any way; in contrast to, "a play actor or a trickster who can return from his trick to the admiration of his friends", the spy can confide in no-one and never let his guard down.
And separately, Le Carre (who one newspaper said, was actually in that line of work for real) talks about the inhabiting of the character. and that a successful spy plays his character even when alone; the only way for him to convince others is to partly convince even himself. Thus in this book - "Spy who came in from the Cold" his hero acts as a drunk to lure his enemies; yet even alone he drinks too much, to keep his character believable. and, he partly makes it work by accentuating things that are real parts of him ".. and all these things, were just exagerrations of traits he already possessed.." (that quote won't be spot on).

interestingly that character is eventually caught by desperately seeking some solace with another person; he does everything to protect the person but it turns out, his masters have relied on that behaviour, on his humanity, and even set him up for it.

subtle science
May 17th, 2005, 2:32 am
eigerjoch--How wretched that you've had a wretched day. Chocolate (the best form of sympathy) will always be given on Dev of Sev for those who ask for it (to paraphrase Dumbledore)!

Clearly, Snape can't not play the part of the spy; rather, as your references say, he can't not be the spy. When can he possibly relax? Only alone: except...as le Carre pointed out: he has to maintain the habits; if he lets go too much, even only to himself, he increases the danger that he will slip in public. Everything has to be so ingrained that it takes a greater effort to break the illusion than to maintain it.

Speculation Festival Alert. My guess would be that the only time Snape was purely himself was when he first spoke to Dumbledore about getting out of the DEs and leaving...when, in fact, Snape must have asked for help. That would seem to be the moment that Dumbledore knew the real Snape, and possibly it was the last time--thus far--that Snape could be wholly himself.

silver ink pot
May 17th, 2005, 2:43 am
Well, I've washed the dirt off after my digging. Guess what? I couldn't find a single instance of Snape's saying, "Yes, Headmaster." It's like the idea that Snape always disagrees with Dumbledore--he doesn't: only in CoS (the arrival by car) and PoA (trusting Lupin). Chalk it up to a Casablanca moment: nobody ever says, "Play it again, Sam," either : ) ! Snape never says anything; if, as in PoA, he's still angry, he just shuts up--and twice walks out on Dumbledore. As I said earlier, I vote that that action is a bit of self-censorship, to avoid saying what he would surely regret to Dumbledore. In GoF, when he agrees with Dumbledore, he nods (the second time he gets orders, when he's told to get Fudge and tell Fudge where Dumbeldore will be; the first time, he just goes), and he says "I am" when Dumbledore asks him if he's prepared, at the end. Those are his most demonstrative responses.

He invariably addresses Dumbledore as either Headmaster or Professor. I didn't even see "Professor Dumbledore" used (although I wasn't specifically looking for that)--just the stand-alone title. Thoroughly, absolutely, and unfailingly formal. Even when Dumbledore is irritating him in PoA.

Doh! Subtle, I'm sorry if I sent you digging like a terrier. I'm the one who started this by quoting the "Yes, Headmaster," and I knew where it was from! :sigh: And here I sent you digging when I should have just given you the reference. :rolleyes: Forgive me, please, for wasting your time.

It is PoA, of all places, right in the middle of the school year, at Christmas Dinner:

Chapter 11, PoA
I doubt," said Dumbledore, in a cheerful but slightly raised voice, which put an end to Professor McGonagall and Professor Trelawney's conversation, "that Professor Lupin is in any immediate danger. Severus, you've made the potion for him again?"

"Yes, Headmaster," said Snape.

"Good," said Dumbledore. "Then he should be up and about in no time..."

I think this scene is important because, even though Snape has been angry off and on since the beginning of the year, and certainly gets angry again later, he is seemingly able to put it aside at Christmas Dinner. This dialogue comes after Dumbledore giving Snape the cracker that turns into the vulture hat. Is Dumbledore trying to break the ice?

But it is significant that you didn't find any other cases, Subtle, because maybe I am perpetuating the myth that Snape says that alot, when he really doesn't. (I like your "play it again, Sam" parallel from Casablanca. What Rick really says is "Play it, Sam." :) )

As for the Voldemort connection...you know, crazed Potter-maniac friend of mine (in other words, just one of the usual readers) a while back tossed out the question, "Do you think Snape and Voldemort are related somehow?" We were discussing that odd "mistake" that JKR wouldn't allow to be corrected, when Riddle is called the last "ancestor" of Slytherin (by none other than Dumbledore--CoS, pp. 332-333, US paper). We reached no conclusion, other than that 'mistake' is extremely weird. And intriguing..........

Did you see this post by Steve from the Harry Potter Lexicon on the "Neville Voldemort and Alot of Gum" thread about official changes to the books by Bloomsbury Press? You can show your friend:

Quote:
Lexicon Steve: Just to verify for you: Bloomsbury has issued a list of changes to the text of all five books. I happened to get a hold of a copy of this list, and one of the changes is for "ancestor" to be changed to "descendent." So it's official.

Off Topic: He also says that they've changed every single reference to Drooble's Best to include the entire proper name: Droobles Best Blowing Gum. That's significant over there because of the anagrams "Gold Bribe Below St. Mungo's" and "Goblins Bought Tomb Bug." :evil: :tu: That is just amazing!

subtle science
May 17th, 2005, 3:26 am
Interesting, silver ink pot....I kept thinking I was missing something, but I also kept telling myself it was in OotP, except Dumbledore and Snape don't cross paths (so far as Harry is concerned) in that book. You didn't waste my time--I did, looking for nonexistent scenes in OotP (Ah--"what a drag it is, getting old"). Besides--a good dig is never a waste of time.

Now that you've brought it up--the Christmas dinner scene is interesting. First--a collection of random thoughts, just stuff that struck me...Seven teachers have stayed at the school (even if Lupin's "ill"), plus Filch. Five of the seven protected the Stone. Trelawney doesn't seem to have a clue that Lupin's a werewolf. When she and McGonagall discuss Lupin (well, Trelawney discusses--McGonagall makes snarky remarks about Sibyll to Sibyll), Dumbledore basically interrupts them, cutting off anything further. His question about the potion is generic--of course Dumbledore isn't dim enough to call it by its name; however, the very fact that it's generic, and that Dumbledore doesn't think that asking Snape this will give away anything...seem to me to be the closest we've gotten to finding out that Snape is in charge of the medicinal potion sat the school....

Snape's "Yes, Headmaster" isn't colored with any description. It is interesting that it comes two pages after Dumbledore's bit with the vulture hat, and Snape's reaction to that: "Snape's mouth thinned and he pushed the hat toward Dumbledore" (p. 228). And--it comes after the spat in the Great Hall, in "Grim Defeat," when he totally shut Snape down--in another semi-public conversation that was almost veering toward mentioning Lupin's condition....

Hmmm.

I had heard, some place, that the ancestor reference was changed, but then changed back...Glad to have that cleared up, because it didn't make sense in the books....never mind that it was changed/not changed. Too mind boggling. Good. Take that one off the list of questions that desperately need answers....!

vickilind
May 17th, 2005, 5:14 am
Originally posted by Subtlescience: And random last thought--The idea of evil being attractive is quite a Romantic notion.................

I have alway said the "sin" is fun and easy, and if it were as easy to be "good and righteous" as it is to sin, no one would ever sin!

Posted by Subtlescience: Speculation Festival Alert. My guess would be that the only time Snape was purely himself was when he first spoke to Dumbledore about getting out of the DEs and leaving...when, in fact, Snape must have asked for help. That would seem to be the moment that Dumbledore knew the real Snape, and possibly it was the last time--thus far--that Snape could be wholly himself.

Kind of sad...and I see a slight parallel to Remus. Only in that both are solitary, by choice; Snape, to keep up appearances and keep himself safe; Remus, to keep others safe. Too bad they can't see that similarity in one another.


posted by Subtlescience: (Ah--"what a drag it is, getting old").

As Indiana Jones said; "it's not the years, it's the mileage."

Great posts everyone. Snape sparks good discussion.

Chievrefueil
May 17th, 2005, 5:32 am
If Snape only adheres to the side of good because of Dumbledore, then he hasn't gone through a moral change; he's just exchanged one absolute authority for another. It's the same problem I have with his switching sides only for Lily's sake--or any other love interest: he would be switching for someone else's sake, not his own. Considering the risk he took, it would be a fairly weak motivation: he's not going through all of this because he thinks it's right, but because it makes Dumbledore approve. While I think that Dumbledore's approval is of immense importance to Snape, the fact that he does disagree with him in PoA indicates that his motive is not a blind following of Dumbledore's lead. He is working with Dumbledore, not for him.I understand what you mean, subtle, but wouldn't some degree of changing for someone else, rather than for himself, fit the mold of a Gothic Hero? As if changing merely for himself wouldn't be good enough?As for evil being attractive and JKR's talk of Snape not being attractive, something about Snape is apparently pretty attractive. Physically, no, Snape is no Adonis. He does, however, have something that appeals to a person. I think that something is being able to decide on one's own what is right, being able to admit major mistakes in those decisions and try to make up for them (though grudgingly at times), and acting on those decisions (you have mentioned him picking up Harry when no one else would). If you need more proof that Snape is somehow attractive...look at the number of Snape related sigs. around here. Maybe JKR was trying to draw attention to the fact that there is more to attractiveness than physical appearance. I think the "Snape fans" are different, though. Snape is attractive as a character to discuss because he's very complicated and mysterious. To some extent, mystery is attractive, but that's not how he's viewed by the other characters in the books. Does Snape appeal to any of the characters in the book?

vickilind
May 17th, 2005, 5:47 am
Posted by Chievrefueil: I think the "Snape fans" are different, though. Snape is attractive as a character to discuss because he's very complicated and mysterious. To some extent, mystery is attractive, but that's not how he's viewed by the other characters in the books. Does Snape appeal to any of the characters in the book?

He doesn't appeal to anyone in the books. We see him from a different prism, so we find him appealing. If I were to meet someone like him, I probably wouldn't want him as a friend. But as a literary character, he is one of my faves. Kind of like Gollum; fascinating, but wouldn't want him for a friend.

Trisha
May 17th, 2005, 10:29 am
Posted by Chievrefueil: I understand what you mean, subtle, but wouldn't some degree of changing for someone else, rather than for himself, fit the mold of a Gothic Hero? As if changing merely for himself wouldn't be good enough?
But wouldn't changing for Dumbledore be an amazing step for someone as self-contained as Snape? It's halfway to redemption, in that he is accepting another's view of right and wrong.
Of course, that's assuming Snape joined the Order of the Phoenix because he believed in it's cause, rather than running away from the Death Eaters. The latter makes Dumbledore his only protector, and Hogwarts his sanctuary. Thus losing Dumbledore would make him vulnerable again to Voldemort. How much pressure could he stand on his own -- and how hard would he try?

While I'm stirring the waters... am I the only one cringing at the idea of teenaged Severus getting that tattoo? Peter Pettigrew -- sure, and thanking Voldemort for the privilege. But Snape seems too proud to submit. It's jarring.

subtle science
May 17th, 2005, 12:11 pm
A Gothic hero doesn't really change: he reveals the inherent nobility that he already has. He steps forward (usually at the eleventh hour) for a cause, sometimes to protect someone else. It's not exactly a change, but a bringing forth of what is already inside--if it's ever seen. Going back to Manfred yet again--Manfred never changes his personality in any way; however, he shows glimpses of someone who is better than he claims he is: for instance, when he tells the Abbot to leave, so that he will not be harmed in Manfred's confrontation with a spirit.

I think Snape had to realize for himself that he couldn't stomach Voldemort's plans and methods--it may have been triggered by what happened to Regulus, or the plot(s) against Lily, but, finally, it was that Snape could not support such practices. Again, I don't believe he changed for Dumbledore; he came to Dumbledore after the change. Now, he has willingly allied himself with Dumbledore; Dumbledore neither expects nor receives blind obediance from Snape (or anyone else, for that matter). Voldemort views his DEs with suspicion--even if/when they're being loyal. In contrast, Dumbledore trusts his fellow Order members. While he is the leader, he is not the dictator, as is Voldemort. One can disagree with or even disobey his orders and not be punished--it's a give-and-take of trust: just as someone like Snape trusts Dumbledore to make the right decisions and develop the right plan, Dumbledore returns the trust. I think the latter must be a novelty for Snape.

Therein lies the change that Dumbledore can/may be producing in Snape: the idea of trusting others. Except this goes right back to what eigerjoch was considering: as a spy, Snape really cannot trust others. Dumbledore, yes. All others have to be kept in the category of "Keep your distance."

severa78
May 17th, 2005, 12:21 pm
Therein lies the change that Dumbledore can/may be producing in Snape: the idea of trusting others. Except this goes right back to what eigerjoch was considering: as a spy, Snape really cannot trust others. Dumbledore, yes. All others have to be kept in the category of "Keep your distance."
Wonderful post, as usual! :tu: The description of the spy in LeCarre's book quoted before, shows that a spy eventually seeks someone to trust. Snape needs DD because he's the only one he can trust, and that helps him face the fact that he can't have a "normal" relationship with anyone else. Having at least one person who understands you helps a lot!

That's why I think that if DD went missing, then Snape really has noone to trust, and that makes a great deal of difference. He would be utterly and completely alone, unless he could trust someone else to the same extent.. Harry, perhaps? That's what I meant by DD's death being a turning point for Severus. Can you picture him trusting Harry as he once trusted DD? Now, that's a change! ;)

sub8rosa
May 17th, 2005, 1:33 pm
He doesn't appeal to anyone in the books. We see him from a different prism, so we find him appealing. If I were to meet someone like him, I probably wouldn't want him as a friend. But as a literary character, he is one of my faves. Kind of like Gollum; fascinating, but wouldn't want him for a friend.
*bludgeons self in head with OotF* Very good point. I was allowing my bias in favor of very well done literary characters to get in the way of objectively viewing what the book indicates. If I were to meet him, I would probably just want to get inside his head, and then decide whether or not to attempt to be his friend, not that he would allow another person to get that close to him. Do you think that Snape really could open up to someone, not just with cold, hard facts about his past, but emotionally as well, enough to have a friendship? I don't know that his relationship with DD could really be called a friendship, even though DD probably knows almost everything about Snape's childhood and his time as a DE. Snape's response to the vulture hat does not seem typical of a friend, but Snape could have just wanted to keep up appearances.

While I'm stirring the waters... am I the only one cringing at the idea of teenaged Severus getting that tattoo? Peter Pettigrew -- sure, and thanking Voldemort for the privilege. But Snape seems too proud to submit. It's jarring.
:agree: Yeah, I'm not awfully fond of that image, especially because Snape was weak enough at one point to have to join the DE for support and a feeling of acceptance. If the members of the OotF don't show him a little more acceptance, he might be weak enough to go back to the DE. I do not think that Snape is this desperate for a pat on the back, but it is still a possibility.

clkginny
May 17th, 2005, 2:01 pm
Therein lies the change that Dumbledore can/may be producing in Snape: the idea of trusting others. Except this goes right back to what eigerjoch was considering: as a spy, Snape really cannot trust others. Dumbledore, yes. All others have to be kept in the category of "Keep your distance."
And what kind of affect would all those years under the noses of the children of those whom he spies against have? How many of the traits that he has now were a necessary affectation that have become ingrained in his personality now? (I'm not counting his interactions with Harry, I think they fall in a different category) One of the most intriguing things about Snape is the fact that we don't know who he really is. What aspects of the person we see now are really him, and how much is the role he plays? Neville is a good example. We've argued that he treats Neville similar to, but more extreme than, Mcgonagall. Is that the way he would treat Neville if he wasn't a spy keeping up appearances? Could he treat Neville any other way, now? These are the questions that drive me nuts.

That's why I think that if DD went missing, then Snape really has noone to trust, and that makes a great deal of difference. He would be utterly and completely alone, unless he could trust someone else to the same extent.. Harry, perhaps? That's what I meant by DD's death being a turning point for Severus. Can you picture him trusting Harry as he once trusted DD? Now, that's a change!
I think if Dumbledore dissapeared, Snape would turn to Mcgonagall. He seems to have the closest relationship with her. There are people among the Order that would support him, as well. Subtle made a list of those, in an earlier post. I doubt that Snape could let go of his problems with Harry under the current circumstances. I think that the situation would have to change for that to happen.

Snape's response to the vulture hat does not seem typical of a friend, but Snape could have just wanted to keep up appearances.
I think that Snape just wasn't enthused about the hat. Of course, if the entire school knew that I'd been boggart in drag, I might not be too enthused about wearing part of the costume, either.

subtle science
May 17th, 2005, 2:38 pm
I think the closest look we get of the real Snape is that first speech in Potions class: there's a goldmine of information in what he says and how he says it. To me, it supports the idea that, once upon a time, he was more emotional--and still has the capacity, or he wouldn't be waxing lyrical over the beauty of Potions in front of a bunch of 11-year-olds. But he is a sarcastic git ("dunderheads I usually have to teach"), and he is definitely weary: his expectations have been eroded and he'll opt for the offensive immediately, even if--especially if--there's no student offense indicated; he's not going to wait to find out. (Consider that in light of the events in SWM.) The speech reveals a fundamental impatience with 'slower' people and their expectations (see my signature!)--I find this to be one of the key indicators of high intelligence...this is someone who doesn't easily (or at all) gear down to a lower intellectual plane. He sends the message that you're going to have to reach up; he's not bending down to your level--he's not even going to reach out a hand to pull you up. Jump--or not; make it--or not: it's not his problem. It's a very professorial attitude, something you'd expect to see at a university...very scary to 11-year-olds.

Random topic switch to the vulture hat, which I've been mulling over. The only reaction Snape gives is the thinned mouth and the shove away...he doesn't react to Dumbledore's wearing it. It does seem as if Dumbledore is teasing Snape, and Snape, while he certainly is not going to go to the extreme of joining in on the joke on himself, is being tolerant of the joke's being made. If that convoluted sentence made any sense whatsoever............

vickilind
May 17th, 2005, 4:21 pm
Originally posted by Subtlescience: Random topic switch to the vulture hat, which I've been mulling over. The only reaction Snape gives is the thinned mouth and the shove away...he doesn't react to Dumbledore's wearing it. It does seem as if Dumbledore is teasing Snape, and Snape, while he certainly is not going to go to the extreme of joining in on the joke on himself, is being tolerant of the joke's being made. If that convoluted sentence made any sense whatsoever............

It makes sense; he knows the image of him in grandma's clothes has probably swept through the school. It angers him; he has worked hard to make this image of himself as tough and "above it all"; I see the hat as DDs attempt at lightening up. I also think DD doesn't expect Snape to respond with humor. DD realizes that Snape is not amused and wears the hat himself to try and bring the humor to himself. You know, when you say something about someone that you think is amusing and the person is hurt or angry, so you try and turn it back on yourself? Does that make any sense? In my head it does, but I'm not sure if I'm getting my point across?

Norbertha
May 17th, 2005, 11:47 pm
Speculation Festival Alert. My guess would be that the only time Snape was purely himself was when he first spoke to Dumbledore about getting out of the DEs and leaving...when, in fact, Snape must have asked for help. That would seem to be the moment that Dumbledore knew the real Snape, and possibly it was the last time--thus far--that Snape could be wholly himself.
Yes. It's really brave of Snape to go and ask for help, isn't it. He's such a proud person. He despises what he calls "weakness". Still, he goes to Dumbledore and gives himself completely in Dumbledore's hands like that. There is almost something Christian about it, I think. In going to Dumbledore, he temporarily gives up all his pride, and drops all his defence mechanisms. His life is completely in Dumbledore's hands.

While I'm stirring the waters... am I the only one cringing at the idea of teenaged Severus getting that tattoo? Peter Pettigrew -- sure, and thanking Voldemort for the privilege. But Snape seems too proud to submit. It's jarring.
Yeah, it doesn't look right in my mind either. Unless he didn't see it as submittance, but rather as acceptance into the group.
I don't know that his relationship with DD could really be called a friendship, even though DD probably knows almost everything about Snape's childhood and his time as a DE. Snape's response to the vulture hat does not seem typical of a friend, but Snape could have just wanted to keep up appearances.
Random topic switch to the vulture hat, which I've been mulling over. The only reaction Snape gives is the thinned mouth and the shove away...he doesn't react to Dumbledore's wearing it. It does seem as if Dumbledore is teasing Snape, and Snape, while he certainly is not going to go to the extreme of joining in on the joke on himself, is being tolerant of the joke's being made. If that convoluted sentence made any sense whatsoever............
It makes sense; he knows the image of him in grandma's clothes has probably swept through the school. It angers him; he has worked hard to make this image of himself as tough and "above it all"; I see the hat as DDs attempt at lightening up. I also think DD doesn't expect Snape to respond with humor. DD realizes that Snape is not amused and wears the hat himself to try and bring the humor to himself. You know, when you say something about someone that you think is amusing and the person is hurt or angry, so you try and turn it back on yourself? Does that make any sense? In my head it does, but I'm not sure if I'm getting my point across?
:agree: I think Dumbledore is sort of trying to comfort Snape when he puts the hat on himself. As you say, the whole school has heard about the BOggart episode, and Dumbledore probably knows how touchy Snape is about being made a laugh of. So when the hat comes out of the cracker, Dumbledore puts it on himself to break to tension, and to bring the joke onto himself instead of Snape. Also, everybody respects and likes Dumbledore so much that when DD has worn a vulture hat too, it instantly makes Snape's vulture hat old news. It nullifies the joke.

But a premise for this to work, is that Dumbledore and Snape are friends, so that Snape doesn't suspect Dumbledore to make fun of him. Dumbledore putting on the hat could easily be interpreted as mocking Snape. But I don't think anyone around the table sees it like that. Nobody laughs in any unfriendly way, anyway, not even the students.

eigerjoch
May 18th, 2005, 2:24 am
eigerjoch--How wretched that you've had a wretched day. Chocolate (the best form of sympathy) will always be given on Dev of Sev for those who ask for it (to paraphrase Dumbledore)!
aw thanks :)

I think the "Snape fans" are different, though. Snape is attractive as a character to discuss because he's very complicated and mysterious. To some extent, mystery is attractive, but that's not how he's viewed by the other characters in the books. Does Snape appeal to any of the characters in the book? Aside from the difference in viewpoint a between a reader enjoying a literary character, and another character's view of them, there's the whole prism - just noticed someone else used same word - through which readers see characters. Especially characters they like, and especially mysterious characters. You can end up superimposing all sorts of traits onto them, that you'd like them to have, until the author categorically proves you wrong. and even if you think realistically, "this is way off really he'd never do that", once you slip into seeing a character a certain way hard to stop. if that makes any sense! and obviously with this one, we know so little about him at all, it's very easy...

The fact we find the image of him lowering himself to get a dark mark maybe an indicator of that? (sorry don't mean to do all-encompassing 'we' just that few people seem to be thinking same way). Liking the image of him in control of himself and everything going on around him, and being proud etc. the mark thing would detract from it.

another thought though on how he's viewed by the other character in the books. we only know how he's viewed by a few, don't we... who knows how all the others see him. Sigh, it would be so illuminating to have just *one* chapter not from Harry's POV :)

One of the most intriguing things about Snape is the fact that we don't know who he really is. What aspects of the person we see now are really him, and how much is the role he plays? exactly. the oft-mentioned 'harry filter', the scarcity of references you get that give anything away about what he really thinks or feels... that's partly why everyone's so desperate to know what's happened in his past, why he turned etc, because it'll be the real clincher as to what he actually feels and thinks.

Learic
May 18th, 2005, 2:55 am
Does anyone know why Snape looked into the Foe glass in GOF? It just seemed to stand out to me. Also why do you think Snape had such a strang reaction to Lucius being named as a DE in GOF, something which only Harry seemed to notice.


Ooh ooh And why did Snape go to Filch in PS/SS? How much does Filch know? These things I have never been able to figure out myself.

clkginny
May 18th, 2005, 4:08 am
Does anyone know why Snape looked into the Foe glass in GOF? It just seemed to stand out to me.
Snape followed him, looking into the Foe-Glass, where his own face was still visible, glaring into the room.
Speculation, but I think it is because Snape found himself walking the wire in this situation. He has been behind the scenes, keeping himself in a situation where he could return to spying. I've also wondered if he had to do that to keep control of himself. The idea of looking anywhere but at what could cause him to lose control.

Also why do you think Snape had such a strang reaction to Lucius being named as a DE in GOF, something which only Harry seemed to notice.
Speculation, again, but I always figured it was a subconscious reaction to what Harry had been through. Especially since learning about SWM, I've thought that he must have identified with how Harry felt. Perhaps a certain amount of surprise, either because Malfoy had identified himself, or because he was surprised that Harry had managed to escape under the circumstances.

Ooh ooh And why did Snape go to Filch in PS/SS? How much does Filch know? These things I have never been able to figure out myself.
Either Dumbledore and Snape knew about/suspected Quirrell, or Snape alone knew/suspected. Either way, why not Filch? Filch is unlikely to stand up for anyone but himself. He doesn't seem to spread rumors. As a squib, he can help Snape with mundane methods of healing, allowing Snape to proceed without notifying the entire castle. An advantage, if you don't want Quirrell getting wind that more than the "Dark Arts coveting" Potion's Master suspected anything funny.

Anyway, just my thoughts on the subject.

Chievrefueil
May 18th, 2005, 5:04 am
A Gothic hero doesn't really change: he reveals the inherent nobility that he already has. He steps forward (usually at the eleventh hour) for a cause, sometimes to protect someone else. It's not exactly a change, but a bringing forth of what is already inside--if it's ever seen. Going back to Manfred yet again--Manfred never changes his personality in any way; however, he shows glimpses of someone who is better than he claims he is: for instance, when he tells the Abbot to leave, so that he will not be harmed in Manfred's confrontation with a spirit.Although I phrased it as "change," this is essentially what I meant. The nobility wouldn't come out for himself, but for some other person or cause. So, do you think Snape changed between becoming a Death Eater and working for the Order or do you think he gave in to a baser instinct in becoming a Death Eater and began working for the Order when he allowed his "inherent nobility" to come forward? I would actually think the former--probably because I don't really understand why he would go from evil actions to good actions without a fundamental change in who he was. I could see it being the latter, if his position as a Death Eater had been neutral--that doesn't seem possible, though.

As an aside, would Sidney Carton from A Tale of Two Cities be a Gothic-type hero? From what I remember he is somewhat tortured, feeling unworthy, viewed as a drunk (?), but is very noble in the end. To me, he seems to start from a neutral position (he's not out supporting or fighting the Revolution) and moves to a noble position.
While I'm stirring the waters... am I the only one cringing at the idea of teenaged Severus getting that tattoo? Peter Pettigrew -- sure, and thanking Voldemort for the privilege. But Snape seems too proud to submit. It's jarring.Yeah, it doesn't look right in my mind either. Unless he didn't see it as submittance, but rather as acceptance into the group.That seems likely, Norbertha--a rite of passage. Also, it reminds me a bit of Umbridge's evil quill. Harry puts up with it as a matter of stubborn pride. It seems that Snape could view having experienced the Dark Mark in the same manner.
Also why do you think Snape had such a strang reaction to Lucius being named as a DE in GOF, something which only Harry seemed to notice.In the beginning, I thought that perhaps Snape didn't know for certain that Lucius was a Death Eater. Now, I think it's more likely that he was surprised Harry could have named any of them. But, who really knows? ;)

vickilind
May 18th, 2005, 6:06 am
Originally posted by Learic: Also why do you think Snape had such a strang reaction to Lucius being named as a DE in GOF, something which only Harry seemed to notice.

Many have speculated if Snape was at the graveyard; if he were and was standing next to Malfoy, or near him, maybe Snape is worried that Harry will name him next as being in the circle?

HedwigOwl
May 18th, 2005, 7:24 am
Many have speculated if Snape was at the graveyard; if he were and was standing next to Malfoy, or near him, maybe Snape is worried that Harry will name him next as being in the circle?

Ah, that's a great observation. I think you're right. And although a few minutes later Snape rolled up his sleeve to show Fudge that the dark mark was back, that's a whole lot different than being outed as a graveyard participant. Perhaps Snape was there afterall.

vickilind
May 18th, 2005, 7:52 am
Thanks Hedwig; it does make sense to me; more and more when I think about it. Since Snape is still spying for DD with the DEs, I wonder who else knows that? Some of the Order members, but probably not Fudge (who seems pretty clueless anyway), so it would make sense Snape would worry if Harry had seen him and/or mention it.

Learic
May 18th, 2005, 9:16 am
Many have speculated if Snape was at the graveyard; if he were and was standing next to Malfoy, or near him, maybe Snape is worried that Harry will name him next as being in the circle?


Oooohhhh Really good eye you got there!

subtle science
May 18th, 2005, 12:39 pm
Mmmm...Sidney Carton. "It is a far, far better thing I do, than I have ever done before." Carton is one of those tortured, romantic figures. He's a complete alcoholic, but brilliant--a classic case of the idea that the cynic is the romantic who has been hurt. He doesn't really change, though: it's never revealed in the novel, but there is something in his past--some tragic moment--that has turned him to alcohol and apathy. However, again, there's the inherent nobility that keeps him from maintaining his apathetic appearance. He's invaluable as the assistant lawyer: he has a depth of knowledge of the law and a quick mind--even inebriated--to apply it. It's Carton who figures out how to save Charles--both times. And each time, he does it because Charles is a "better" man than Carton is, and because Dr. Minette's daughter, Lucie, Carton's ideal--he loves her and she could redeem him, but he believes at too great a cost to her; she does, finally, redeem him, but by means of Carton's unusual solution to the dangerous dilemma. Great novel. Great Masterpiece Theater presentation, too: a British-French co-production starring James Wilby as Carton; it's on DVD. End of commercial message.

I really don't think Snape was in the graveyard. If he were, then it's not clear why he's so nervous--and why Dumbledore is so nervous--when he goes off to make contact with the DEs and Voldemort at the end of GoF. If he had been in the graveyard, then he's already made contact, and he's fine--Voldemort didn't even bother to speak to him, to chastise him or give him a dose of Cruciatus, so Snape'is in the clear. His and Dumbledore's reactions make more sense if Snape hadn't been there: they don't know exactly what will happen--they do know that Snape's in trouble for not responding immediately to the call (he can always plead having to stick around the school because of Dumbledore, although Voldemort's not really strong on listening to logical explanations), plus he's going to get the usual punishment for not searching for Voldemort, blah, blah.

As for Snape's looking in the Foe Glass: he is the one who has the habit of looking around first--he does it in PS/SS: he goes to check out the troll, while the other focus on the Trio. First off, I think the whole thing is a red herring, to counter the image of Snape at Dumbleodre's side, breaking through the door. That image was a pretty obvious display of Snape's true allegiance, so JKR balances it out with the question of why he looks in the glass. Does he know it's a Foe Glass? Or is he simply checking out the room via the reflections in a mirror? Or--is that the moment he realizes it is a Foe Glass and not a regular mirror--is he the one who realizes that, as they enter, again coming from his tendency to check out the surroundings?

I think his start, apparently at the name of Lucius Malfoy, is yet another red herring. This one balances what Snape does next, which is deliver the Dark Mark tutorial to one and all. SInce he himself does the job of exposing himself to be a former DE, it doesn't seem too logical that he was afraid of being outed by Harry.

He starts during the argument between Fudge and Dumbledore over Harry's scar. Fudge has implied that Harry is mentally unstable, and Dumbledore defends him:

"I believe it hurts him when Voldemort is close by, or feeling particularly murderous."
Fudge had taken half a step back from Dumbledore, but he looked no less stubborn.
"You'll forgive me, Dumbledore, but I've never heard of a curse scar acting as an alarm bell before...."
"Look, I saw Voldemort come back!" Harry shouted...."I saw the Death Eaters! I can give you their names! Lucius Malfoy--"
Snape made a sudden movement, but as Harry looked at him, Snape's eyes flew back to Fudge.
"Malfoy was cleared!" said Fudge, visibly affronted (p. 706, US paper).

Sometimes, I wonder if Snape was about to give the tutorial right then, when Fudge dismisses the idea of scars as alarms--the Dark Mark fulfills exactly that purpose. Or--does Snape know that Fudge is thisclose to Malfoy, and that Harry's doing himself no good by implicating Fudge's buddy? Harry's the one who gives us the impression that Snape reacted to Malfoy's name; I tend to think he's reacting to the scar argument. But, as I said before--no matter what this red herrings is for: it's not Snape trying to cover up his relationship with Voldemort and the DEs, since he's about to blow that cover wide open all by himself.

Norbertha
May 18th, 2005, 12:59 pm
I think Snape's respose to Lucius's name being mentioned is a "how much does Harry know" kind of thing. Harry is throwing out names, isn't he? Lucius is one of Snape's main sources of informations, I think. So he could be startled at the sound of Lucius's name because he doesn't know what is going to happen to his information source now that Fudge hears he's a Death Eater.

On the other hand, he doesn't need that information source so much anymore, now that Voldemort has returned- He gets it first hand from then on. Before Voldemort's return, I guess Snape would have used Lucius to keep up on what's going on in Death Eater circles.

And each time, he does it because Charles is a "better" man than Carton is, and because Dr. Minette's daughter, Lucie, Carton's ideal-- How appropriate that I called Snape's mum Lucie in my story, then! And I didn't even know about this book, I just chose it because it means Light, and is a nice contrast to Brutus (the name I've given his dad).

hwyla
May 18th, 2005, 2:20 pm
I haven't posted in quite awhile and it's taken almost 3 nights to read all the interesting ideas I had missed. Now that I've 'caught-up' I hope I'll have some thoughts to interest you.

My first thought that relates to the current subject is about Snape's flinch when Malfoy's name is mentioned. I kind of thought that it was because Snape 'knew' he had to go back to VM to spy and that he was kind of counting on Malfoy to smooth his entrance a little (so that VM wouldn't kill him straight off before he even had a chance to win his position back). If Fudge had taken Harry seriously, then Malfoy might be arrested and Snape's return to VM might be even less likely to succeed.

clkginny
May 18th, 2005, 2:22 pm
My first thought that relates to the current subject is about Snape's flinch when Malfoy's name is mentioned. I kind of thought that it was because Snape 'knew' he had to go back to VM to spy and that he was kind of counting on Malfoy to smooth his entrance a little (so that VM wouldn't kill him straight off before he even had a chance to win his position back). If Fudge had taken Harry seriously, then Malfoy might be arrested and Snape's return to VM might be even less likely to succeed.
That is an excellent idea!

subtle science
May 18th, 2005, 2:38 pm
hwyla--That is an excellent idea! And I think it also fits in very nicely and neatly with what Norbertha said, too.

Chievrefueil--I realized that, after all of that blathering, I never actually got around to answering your question. I actually sort of lean toward the idea that the DE choice was Snape's "baser" character showing through--his desire for power/intimidation, revenge, etc. I think that would explain his aura of guilt: he's seen the worst of himself and it sure isn't pretty. What I don't think he's seeing (in that fine Gothic style) is that same horrifying choice also brought out his inherent goodness--that he couldn't remain with Voldemort.

And this leads to my not having a problem seeing Snape submitting to Voldemort and accepting the Dark Mark. That would be exactly what he wanted at the time--almost a badge of honor...and, again, the reversal now: a badge of shame.

Norbertha had a brilliant insight over in Decon that I'm enthralled by: she noted that Snape probably recognized the insults that the Marauders Map delivered--thereby solving the long-standing puzzle of whether or not and how Snape knew the Marauders' nicknames. I'm having a complete nerd attack now! : ) !!

I've always thought that he knew Lupin was involved with the Map--that's why he immediately calls Lupin, and why he's so angry during that scene, as Lupin blithely lies to his face. I love Norbertha's theory! Now it all makes sense.

It also adds fuel to the fire: Snape suspects Lupin's trustworthiness throughout the book, but this adds another layer entirely...You've got the boggart scene...which isn't very professional of Lupin at all, but could be excused, if he didn't have this history of conflict with Snape already. Now Snape finds the Map, recognizes the insults, calls Lupin for a reckoning, and Lupin holds him up in front of yet another student as a fool. And--in the Shack, Lupin actually calls Snape a fool. Did I mention yet that I love Norbertha's theory?! : ) .......................!