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Old April 14th, 2012, 12:25 am
StarryVeil  Female.gif StarryVeil is offline
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Join Date: 09th March 2012
Location: Godric's Hollow
Age: 25
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Re: Feminism in Deathly Hallows - or the lack thereof v.3

Originally Posted by kittling View Post
But is that glorifying of mothers a positive thing for womankind or not?
Meh, well, that wasn’t the debate I was getting into. My main point was that, in a story whose main theme is love, portraying a mother’s love as “stronger” than a father’s is, IMO, favoring women and being unfair to men.

Men are allowed to be good fathers within the context of the series (although I admit that there aren’t many they are there) but they can also be brilliant thinkers, sports men, defenders of right, duellists, fighters, etc they have multiple options and they can be more than one of these women don’t seem to get the same choice as far as I can remember.
Well, there are plenty of women in the series who have concerns other than raising their kids. Molly, I’m not counting since, as I said, I think her character was written to function primarily as a motherly symbol. Throughout HBP we see Slughorn gushing on about Lily’s vivaciousness and skill at Potions. Both, she and James were fighting for the Order and had both defied Voldemort thrice. Tonks is introduced primarily as Moody’s eccentric protégé and an Auror-in-training and secondarily as Remus’s love interest and mother of his baby. Petunia and Narcissa are, I would say, the epitomes of “trophy wives” so I don’t think they are supposed to be portrayed as participating in a lot of activities that are independent of their husbands. Rowling has, I think, shown her disapproval of this sort of a wife. In contrast to Narcissa, Andromeda was shown to rebel against her family’s bigoted views and is, thus, seen in a positive light. Hermione’s mom is a dentist. Neville’s mom was an Auror. Luna’s mom was a “mad scientist” of sorts.

He rarely asks about Lily but constantly wants to know about James
Honestly, I was surprised at the lack of interest Harry showed throughout the series in both his parents. Only once can I remember him asking something about James just for the sake of knowing something about his dad and that was when he starts asking Lupin what James’s Animagus form was in PoA. In SWM, he didn’t actively look for his dad – Professor Flitwick happened to be passing James when he called out to the hall and Harry, looking up, noticed him walking by James. (But, yeah, it was weird that he didn’t look for his mom in the exam hall.) When Harry looked into the Mirror of Erised, though, he first notices his mom and looks mostly at her. Even in the Resurrection Stone scene, he can’t take his eyes off Lily and specifically asks her to stay close to him. It seemed to me like Harry (and the rest of the wizarding world, really) emotionally placed more importance on his mother’s sacrifice than his father’s. (I say emotionally because Lily's was technically more important. I'll also add that this is one of those glorification-of-mothers instances, IMO.)

  • Hagrid has been argued to be a father figure and he is often on Harry’s mind
  • Sirius is his godfather and again he is probably one of the most prominent father figures in his own estimation
  • Dumbledore is clearly a ‘good father’ symbol full of pride loyalty, and compassion for Harry and again very prominent.
  • Snape can be argued to be Dumbledore’s counterpart – Harry’s ‘bad father’& I think we all know that Harry spends quite alot of time thinkng & complaining about him.
Aside from Sirius, I think the rest of them are just elderly male presences in his life, the result of the prevalence of male characters in the HP series. I don’t really view them as fatherly symbols to Harry. Hagrid is more of a warm, bumbling friend, DD is the wise mentor, and Snape is the teacher every student loves to hate and the guy who loved Harry’s mom. I don’t really count any of these three as symbols of fatherhood in the HP series.

The battle to integrate the ‘good father’ & ‘bad father’ actually so closely follows the process Harry undergoes to reach peace with his real father that I think this has an enormous impact on the plot of the series – let alone DH where this integration finally achieves completion. Incidentally it is reaching this integration, which allows Harry to see his own father, & the two symbolic fathers as they actually are, that is one of the main things that lends a sense of completion to the series.
Err…sorry, you’ll have to help me out here. I don’t think I understand what you’re trying to say so I’ll refrain from making a comment.


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"Its hooves made no mark on the soft ground as it stared at Harry with its large, silver eyes. Slowly, it bowed its antlered head. And Harry realized..."Prongs..."
- Hermione's Secret, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
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