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Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis



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  #101  
Old November 4th, 2007, 5:14 pm
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

I don't know exactly what Narcissa's involvement with the Death Eaters was. It could be that she ws heavily involved at first; but by HBP she was clearly less enchanted with Voldemort than I imagined. She seemed to have come to the realization that despite Voldemort's promises to his minions, everyone was expendable. It was grand to see her betray Voldemort in the end, even if her motivation was protection of Draco. She together with Regulus and Lucius were the only real examples of those under Voldemort defying him beneath his nose while not exactly turning to the good side. Good for them.


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  #102  
Old November 4th, 2007, 5:35 pm
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

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She together with Regulus and Lucius were the only real examples of those under Voldemort defying him beneath his nose while not exactly turning to the good side.
If you want loyal followers - recruit Hufflepuffs!


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  #103  
Old November 5th, 2007, 11:40 pm
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

1. Is she a Death Eater?
Post DH, I would still say that she was not a DE in that she didn't have the mark, but I think was loyal to first her husband and because he was loyal to Voldemort she had to follow suit. Then when Draco joined once again she was there to see that he was protected, by that time there was no turning back. The Malfoys were in for the long hawl.

2. Did Narcissa know of Lucius's intent to use Voldemort's diary to re-open the CoS? Was she part of the plan or did she try to stop him?
I don't think she did, but I would not rule out the possibility that she did know. I feel like she would have been worried about her son's safety even if Lucius made it clear to her that the basilisk would only target muggleborns, perhaps their argument over this is the very way Dobby found out...


3. How does she feel now that her husband has been captured, exposed, and imprisoned as a Death Eater?
I think she is embarrassed, but I think she made it clear in her conversation with Snape and Bella that she was standing by him.

4. Why allow her son, who is not of age, to become a Death Eater? Was she proud at first? Was she fearful, once his task was set for him?
Narcissa didn't have any control over this. Draco did it on his own. I don't think that she was proud, I think she was worried above all else. Especially, when she knew that Lucius was in prison and Voldy would not be happy with the Malfoy family. I think she was definitely fearful and I think we saw this in Spinners End.

5. We know that she has contact with Bellatrix, Draco even took lessons from Bella over the summer, but what relationship, if any, does she have with Andromeda & Tonks?
I think from DH, we saw that she doesn't have a relationship with them at all . I would like to think that after the war the two reconciled.

6. How did Narcissa feel about Sirius Black? Did she know he wasn't a Death Eater? Did she know he was innocently sentenced to Azkaban? How did she react to his death at the hands of her sister?
This is hard since it is kind of all speculation. Depending on how close the families were she may have known that Sirius would never betray his friends in that matter and it really depends if Lucius knew that Peter was really the spy and if he would have told his wife. I kind of feel that Peter's loyalties were kept secret from other DEs, so he would not have found out until the Graveyard and then if he told his wife she would have had to put the pieces together. She still seemed to be in connection with Bella and even allowed her son to stay with her so it seems that she didn't care much that Bella had killed Sirius.

7. Will 'Cissy' be punished for seeking help from Severus? Will we see her in the final book? What role will she play?
I think we saw the whole Malfoy family was punished by having their home be headquarters for the DEs. She had a huge part to play in DH, by being the one to go against Voldemort and save Harry. Even though that was only done out of fear for her son, she did it and I feel like it had to have amounted to some amount of bravery on her part.


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  #104  
Old November 8th, 2007, 5:44 pm
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by Fleur du mal View Post
If you want loyal followers - recruit Hufflepuffs!

True...Hufflepuff are the most loyal of the lot


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  #105  
Old November 16th, 2007, 1:44 am
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

I like these character. first impression seems quite snob but she is stronger. and she cares a lot about her family.


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  #106  
Old November 16th, 2007, 2:04 am
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by wickedwickedboy View Post
It was grand to see her betray Voldemort in the end, even if her motivation was protection of Draco. She together with Regulus and Lucius were the only real examples of those under Voldemort defying him beneath his nose while not exactly turning to the good side. Good for them.


I loved Cissa in DH; she's my favorite dark character in the series. The way she lied, right to the Dark Lord, the way she cared for Draco above all else, the way she stuck with her disgraced husband.... She's such a beautiful and powerful woman; you can really tell, throughout the series, how much the Malfoys love and care for one another.

I wonder about how she dealt with Bella's death; she was fairly close with her sister and I imagine that she was devastated by Bella's death in the battle. I do feel sorry for her, even though I don't feel any remorse for Bella's death.

One of my favorite scenes in HBP is Cissa breaking down in Snape's home; the thought of losing her son is so devastating to her, and she really did go all the way to protect him.

The Power of a Mother's Love is so eloquently displayed in the books, and Cissa is no exception.

-LilyPod


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  #107  
Old November 16th, 2007, 8:07 pm
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

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The way she lied, right to the Dark Lord,
She lied to a Death Eater who then told Voldemort Harry was dead.


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  #108  
Old November 16th, 2007, 9:00 pm
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by Trixa View Post
She lied to a Death Eater who then told Voldemort Harry was dead.
She lied to everyone watching - including Voldemort.

The Flaw In The Plan, page 581 f. Bloomsbury Edition'He is dead!' Narcissa Malfoy called to the watchers.
And now they shouted, now they yelled in triumph and stamped their feet, and through his eyelids Harry saw bursts of red and silver light shoot into the air in celebration.
...
'You see?' screeched Voldemort over the tumult. ...


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  #109  
Old November 21st, 2007, 1:39 pm
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

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She lied to a Death Eater who then told Voldemort Harry was dead.
Yeah...that didn't happen. She lied to everyone who was watching as Fleur Du Mal said.


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  #110  
Old November 29th, 2007, 11:07 pm
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by LilyPod View Post

I loved Cissa in DH; she's my favorite dark character in the series. The way she lied, right to the Dark Lord, the way she cared for Draco above all else, the way she stuck with her disgraced husband.... She's such a beautiful and powerful woman; you can really tell, throughout the series, how much the Malfoys love and care for one another.

I wonder about how she dealt with Bella's death; she was fairly close with her sister and I imagine that she was devastated by Bella's death in the battle. I do feel sorry for her, even though I don't feel any remorse for Bella's death.
Yes, I'm quite a Narcissa fan, and I concur with all of this.

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One of my favorite scenes in HBP is Cissa breaking down in Snape's home; the thought of losing her son is so devastating to her, and she really did go all the way to protect him.
Yes, I liked that scene too.

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The Power of a Mother's Love is so eloquently displayed in the books, and Cissa is no exception.
Yes, absolutely. Although, interestingly, Jo Rowling never shows the dark side of maternal love ... unless we see that darker element in Narcissa herself, when she taunts Harry in HBP that Dumbledore won't be around forever to protect him.

But she saved Harry's life in DH, so I forgave her!


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  #111  
Old November 30th, 2007, 10:39 am
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

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Yes, absolutely. Although, interestingly, Jo Rowling never shows the dark side of maternal love ... unless we see that darker element in Narcissa herself, when she taunts Harry in HBP that Dumbledore won't be around forever to protect him.
Actually, I do think we see it - in Petunia.

As for Narcissa's comment in Madam Malkin's - hey, I could understand the woman there full well. Her nerves must be so worn-out. Her husband in jail - she must know enough of Voldemort to understand that jail isn't even that bad, compared to Voldemort's wrath. She must have been there when her husband returned home after Voldemort discovered the diary business and 'his wrath was fearsome to behold' (I believe that's what Dumbledore said). Now her son's got entangled with that whole sordid business, too - and obstinate child, he doesn't even listen to her warnings. In fact, HBP seems to mark quite a rupture between her and her beloved child. And she knows that Draco's heading directly for his own doom. Oh, and her insane sister's moved in with her, too. The woman is at the end of her tether, and along comes Harry, the kid who cursed her child only two weeks ago, making Ernie remark 'I want to see his mummy's face when she finds him' or something like that. I can understand her there, I really can


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  #112  
Old November 30th, 2007, 11:01 am
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by Fleur du mal View Post
Actually, I do think we see it - in Petunia.
D'oh!! Of course we do. Silly me.

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As for Narcissa's comment in Madam Malkin's - hey, I could understand the woman there full well. Her nerves must be so worn-out. Her husband in jail - she must know enough of Voldemort to understand that jail isn't even that bad, compared to Voldemort's wrath. She must have been there when her husband returned home after Voldemort discovered the diary business and 'his wrath was fearsome to behold' (I believe that's what Dumbledore said). Now her son's got entangled with that whole sordid business, too - and obstinate child, he doesn't even listen to her warnings. In fact, HBP seems to mark quite a rupture between her and her beloved child. And she knows that Draco's heading directly for his own doom. Oh, and her insane sister's moved in with her, too. The woman is at the end of her tether, and along comes Harry, the kid who cursed her child only two weeks ago, making Ernie remark 'I want to see his mummy's face when she finds him' or something like that. I can understand her there, I really can
Well, I guess I can too!

It's the snotty attitude towards Hermione that gets my goat, of course. Harry and Ron rise up in Hermione's defence when Draco insults her by calling her a Mudblood, which of course is just fine with Narcissa because of the family's pureblood beliefs.

I'm still a Cissa fan, though, especially after DH. I was pretty much rooting for all the Malfoys in DH - their love for each other is their redeeming feature, it's what humanises them, and Jo Rowling sets a very high premium on that kind of family love and loyalty.


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  #113  
Old November 30th, 2007, 11:19 am
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

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Well, I guess I can too!

It's the snotty attitude towards Hermione that gets my goat, of course. Harry and Ron rise up in Hermione's defence when Draco insults her by calling her a Mudblood, which of course is just fine with Narcissa because of the family's pureblood beliefs.

I'm still a Cissa fan, though, especially after DH. I was pretty much rooting for all the Malfoys in DH - their love for each other is their redeeming feature, it's what humanises them, and Jo Rowling sets a very high premium on that kind of family love and loyalty.
The family's belief, yes, but also the fact that Hermione beats darling Draco quite in style; compare Lucius' remark in Borgin and Burke's in CoS. I remember posting a very lengthy post concerning the meaning of the name 'Narcissa' in an old Narcissa thread, so I'm not going to repeat it word for word. But Narcissism is actually about loving only 'your' lot. The Malfoys, and Narcissa in particular, are a textbook example of the so-called 'group Narcissism', I believe. Compare Erich Fromm's work on the matter in 'The Anatomy of Human Destructiveness'.


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  #114  
Old November 30th, 2007, 11:30 am
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

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But Narcissism is actually about loving only 'your' lot. The Malfoys, and Narcissa in particular, are a textbook example of the so-called 'group Narcissism', I believe.
No arguments from me on that one.

I find it interesting that Rowling allows us to see a warmer, more human side of Narcissa though.

She doesn't do that too often with her 'dark' characters which I think is a shame.


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  #115  
Old November 30th, 2007, 1:10 pm
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

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No arguments from me on that one.

I find it interesting that Rowling allows us to see a warmer, more human side of Narcissa though.

She doesn't do that too often with her 'dark' characters which I think is a shame.
I'm quite happy with the way she presents us with her characters, actually. All the important ones are three-dimensional, even if it's just a short line somewhere in passing that's hinting at this. And together with Harry, the reader gets the chance to come from that flat, first-impression picture to something more comprehensive. Take Bella. In GoF, we get the face value - a woman who just tortured two people into insanity and could hardly be more proud of it. In OotP, we see how Azkaban has transformed her, from ruthless to lunatic. But it doesn't stop there. In HBP, we get to see her as a woman, who despite all her cruelty, cares for her sister. The most devoted follower of Voldemort - still she doesn't turn on Narcissa, doesn't betray her sister's betrayal.

I don't like the conventional villain's depiction, as if people who break with the moral code would break with every proper feeling automatically. It's a very naive concept, like in a Grimm's fairy tale. The evil witch is just that - evil. Real human beings aren't like this.

And I loved Narcissa for exactly that. I had bets running prior to DH that she'd commit a betrayal out of concern for her loved ones - concern or revenge (I had also betted that Lucius would be killed by Voldemort, but alas). And I really appreciate it that she did it for exactly that reason. People hardly ever act out of sheer altruism. Where are all the Ghandis, if it were so? Someone who risks their head will only do this for a strong incentive, a very strong one. Only the very young, or the very naive, let themselves be killed for some abstract concept. To motivate the rest, you need a tangible lever. Fear of loss of loved ones is one of the strongest levers you can get. It's how entire countries are instigated to go to war. It's the 'it's either us or them' speeches, the subjective perception of menace for what you hold dear.

I think it was Narcissa's name at first that got me to think of her as the series' landmark of subjectivism. She's indifferent to all the rest. She is no Death Eater - no matter how much she might look down on someone like Hermione, she won't risk her neck for that. The woman clearly wasn't void of all moral either. In OotP, Draco makes a thoughtless remark about lunatics, Neville tries to thump him for it - and Draco is genuinely perplexed. Draco has obviously never been told why Auntie Bella is serving her time in prison. This was the moment for me putting my ideas of the whole Malfoy family into concrete.

Why doesn't Draco know - when daddy keeps him so well-informed on other things. And Draco talks at home about his fellow students. He is bound to have mentioned 'the total loser Longbottom'. But Lucius clearly made no reply of the 'little wonder - his parents were total losers, too'. If the Malfoys were these die-hard Death Eaters, just biting their time until Voldemort finally returned - why had Lucius never gone looking for the master then? Why didn't he tell his son 'your aunt is a heroine! She was willing to go to Azkaban, so devoted she is to our cause!' No, what Bellatrix has done is nothing to brag of, not even in the Malfoys' household.

They're arrogant and prejudiced, without a doubt. In his youth, Lucius was willing to pull out all the stops. But the pivotal term here is 'youth'. I'm sure Draco grew up hearing a lot of rhapsodising about 'the good old times', the Dark Arts, and how everything 'was better, then'. The point is that these things gain glory the more time has passed since. Do you think Narcissa was delighted when her husband left 'on business' for Voldemort back then? With news of Death Eaters like Rosier being killed in battle? The Malfoys, too, had a little boy, around the time when the Potters were killed, and Voldemort disappeared as a consequence. Do you think they cried a single tear for his downfall? No, they surely were no pleasant people. But because they're self-serving, their best instinct must be to get rid of Voldemort, and not the other way round.


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  #116  
Old November 30th, 2007, 2:59 pm
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by Fleur du mal View Post
I don't like the conventional villain's depiction, as if people who break with the moral code would break with every proper feeling automatically. It's a very naive concept, like in a Grimm's fairy tale. The evil witch is just that - evil. Real human beings aren't like this.
No, absolutely. I do feel that Voldemort is two-dimensional, but that's for another thread.

That's a really great post, Fleur, and you've given me all the reasons why I started fangirling the Malfoys so much.

They had my sympathies from the word go in DH, from that very first chapter, in which they are so obviously being terrorised in their own home. (All those Malfoy Manor scenes are sooooo creepy!)

I may not approve of Narcissa's core beliefs but her strong sense of self-preservation, and her love for her husband and son, do make her oh-so-human ... and she simply rocks as a mum! She's a mama bear you definitely want on your side.

And hey, the pureblood mama bear even ends up coming through for Harry.



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  #117  
Old November 30th, 2007, 3:37 pm
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

I love the mama bear imagery

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They had my sympathies from the word go in DH, from that very first chapter, in which they are so obviously being terrorised in their own home.
It's a terrible idea, isn't it? I don't even know why I find the idea of Voldemort in their house so extra-creepy - they had Bella living in their basement, after all, but for some unfathomable reason, I found that notion rather comical. I guess I had all these scenes in my head of Bella drooling over Voldemort and Narcissa yawning behind her hand, or rolling her eyes behind Bella's back.

Quote:
And hey, the pureblood mama bear even ends up coming through for Harry.
What I like best about this is Narcissa's threat from HBP in reverse. 'If you attack my son again, I shall ensure that it is the last thing you ever do.' And what does Harry do? He almost gets Draco killed via Sectumsempra. I can only imagine Narcissa's reaction when receiving that owl. But when it all comes down in the clearing, her vindictiveness towards Voldemort outweighs her anger for Harry by far. She probably wanted her living room back


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  #118  
Old November 30th, 2007, 3:52 pm
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

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It's a terrible idea, isn't it? I don't even know why I find the idea of Voldemort in their house so extra-creepy - they had Bella living in their basement, after all, but for some unfathomable reason, I found that notion rather comical. I guess I had all these scenes in my head of Bella drooling over Voldemort and Narcissa yawning behind her hand, or rolling her eyes behind Bella's back.
Bella's passion for Voldemort is truly one of the most whacky things in the series.

But, honestly, just imagine Voldy living in your house. How incredibly un-nerving ...

Quote:
She probably wanted her living room back


I've written a fanfic in which Cissa has the drawing room exorcised.


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  #119  
Old December 4th, 2007, 7:32 am
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

Well...if you look at it this way. Since when is Voldy the ever-polite house guest? Bella is a psychotic psychopath so obviously she will worship him. But..I didn't find the 'Malfoy Manor' scenes very creepy at all. I found it comical the way Bella was acting (stunning the men and all) which I thought proved she was insane.


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  #120  
Old December 4th, 2007, 9:43 am
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Re: Narcissa Malfoy: Character Analysis

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Well...if you look at it this way. Since when is Voldy the ever-polite house guest? [...] But..I didn't find the 'Malfoy Manor' scenes very creepy at all.
It's no question of politeness. It's unadultered unhinged evil living in the bedroom next to yours. In your own home, you are constantly threatened, you must watch every word you say, you must check the way you look constantly - that 'impassive' stare must be hard to maintain on the long term. And if the man ticks out, he'll tick out - see the tantrum after the Gringotts break - and kill people at random who just happen to stand there. If I imagine to be in such a situation in my own house, with nowhere to go, I'm creeped out as hell


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