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Homosexuality in Harry Potter



 
 
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  #61  
Old October 20th, 2007, 9:15 pm
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter

1. The fact that Dumbledore is gay adds a whole new dimension to his character and to the story. Were you surprised? Does it really change anything?

I was definitely surprised, because I guess I really never thought about Dumbledore's sexuality a all. It doesn't change anything in the books at all for me. I'm honestly still wondering why it's so important. It's a statement to the world, I guess, and if I'm honest, that concerns me a little. As for as the plot and characters go, it doesn't change anything at all.

4. The issue of a wizard's/witch's blood status was a major cause of indifference before Voldemort's downfall. With that in mind, would being gay make much of a difference or is it simply who you are born to that makes the big difference?

I think the wizarding world wuld have similar views as the real world. Blood status in this sense is specific to the wizarding world, but homosexuality isn't. It's hard to tell, though, what the issues would be because JKR never went into that in the books.


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  #62  
Old October 20th, 2007, 9:19 pm
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter


1. The fact that Dumbledore is gay adds a whole new dimension to his character and to the story. Were you surprised? Does it really change anything?


I don't think it changes the story in any way, except it sorta explains why Dumbledore waited a little while to wait to 'bring down' Grindelwald. And how he gave Snape a chance (he understood what it was like to love somebody). I am surprised, i did not see it coming. I always wondered why he never mentioned a woman in his life, but i never expected him to be gay. But this fact does not change anything, it does not change the way i look at him.

2. Do you believe we have met any other characters in the story that might be gay?

Well, its very hard to tell if someone is gay in the HP series because for me, i never looked at Dumbledore as gay just becasue he never mentioned a woman, i just assumed he was too busy or whatever to have a woman. But if thats the case, then a lot of people in Hp may be gay just becasue they are never mentioned with a woman, so it is very hard to tell. But Millicent Bullstrode (sp?) always struck me that way. Maybe Lupin and Tonks. Alot of people may be. But i cannot be sure.


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  #63  
Old October 20th, 2007, 9:22 pm
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter

The issue of a wizard's/witch's blood status was a major cause of indifference before Voldemort's downfall. With that in mind, would being gay make much of a difference or is it simply who you are born to that makes the big difference?

They don't seem to have the same views on racism as we do (look at me talking like it is real )


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  #64  
Old October 20th, 2007, 9:30 pm
BluEyedGrl105  Undisclosed.gif BluEyedGrl105 is offline
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter

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Originally Posted by SnapeIsAChamp View Post
1. The fact that Dumbledore is gay adds a whole new dimension to his character and to the story. Were you surprised? Does it really change anything?

I'm worried my answer might not be popular or PC, but hear me out before judging. To me it DOES change things. It's like finding out that Obi Wan Kenobi or Gandalf are gay. It somehow seems "off" because characters such as Gandalf or Dumbledore, the wise men that help the hero on their journey, are typically very, very asexual. It's almost like sexuality of any sort is beneath them. They do not show their sexuality or show sexual interest at any point. To do so almost takes away some of their "wise old mysterious sage" appeal and makes them more... human. For better or worse. So I don't know... I'm going to need time to process this before I know how I feel about it for sure, but so far I feel like it does change my opinion of Dumbledore. I don't think it would be any better if she had said that Dumbledore had a wife that died tragically at the hand's of a dark wizard, or something along those lines that would have implied he is heterosexual. It's not so much Dumbledore being gay that I have a problem with so much as thinking of him as a sexual being. I can't totally discount that some uncouncious prejudice is creeping into my opinion, meaning that if he was straight I would not feel this way about him being "sexual", and I'm sorry if that is the case. But I really don't think that is the case, my best friend is a lesbian, and in the real world with my real name I've advocated in newspapers read by tens of thousands of people for the legalization of gay marraige. I think I really just don't like Dumbledore being "sexual", it's not sitting right with me just yet. Maybe in time, it won't bother me. Either way, his "sexuality", heterosexual relationships or homosexual ones, never comes up in the books and movies, and I like it that way.

No, I totally see where you are going with this. I always see the wise old man types as asexual to, like they have risen above something so primitive (is that the right word? I don't mean it in a negative connotation) as sex. Like they are capable of relating on a higher level. And plus, they're old....lol

However, personally- to me- I don't think after DH Dumbledore is a typical sage. I think he is shown as more human and flawed after everything we learned in DH. Therefore, I can see him having something as human as sexuality.


  #65  
Old October 20th, 2007, 9:32 pm
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter

1. The fact that Dumbledore is gay adds a whole new dimension to his character and to the story. Were you surprised? Does it really change anything?
No - it changes nothing for me, because I already suspected it. But it is interesting in the light of his relationship with Grindelwald, and goes a long way to explaining the darker aspects of Dumbledore's past, since his views on wizard domination were influenced by his infatuation with Grindelwald.

2. Do you believe we have met any other characters in the story that might be gay?
Oh, definitely. But Jo isn't explicit when she describes race, so I doubt if she would treat sexual orientation any differently. So for Dumbledore, being single and a flamboyant dresser were clues. For another character it could be, for example, having a crush on someone, eg Colin Creevey, or having a close friend of the same sex and never dating anyone. And before someone complains about stereotypes, well, how else would Jo discreetly illustrate that someone is gay? At any rate, I'm glad she didn't make a big point of having a token gay character just to show that homosexuality is ok. I think treating homosexuality as totally normal (as it is) is a better way of doing it. Well done Jo!

3. Do you believe that the Magical World has a more well-developed understanding of "chemical attraction" and thus negating any issue of sexuality? In other words, physical attraction is more than simply genetics, but could in fact be magical and therefore a non issue?
Errr ... in a word - no. I'm pretty sure wizards are just like Muggles in that respect, and I think we've seen enough romance at Hogwarts to have a fair idea of how it works!

4. The issue of a wizard's/witch's blood status was a major cause of indifference before Voldemort's downfall. With that in mind, would being gay make much of a difference or is it simply who you are born to that makes the big difference?
Jo didn't even touch on this, but if we use race as a comparison, it seems that there is very little racial prejudice in the Potterverse as long as you are more than about 75% human!


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  #66  
Old October 20th, 2007, 9:33 pm
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter

1. The fact that Dumbledore is gay adds a whole new dimension to his character and to the story. Were you surprised? Does it really change anything?

I wasn't really suprised, just quite humoured as i read the article. I actually don't think it changes anyhting in my opinion, it hasn't affected the story plot at all for me. Sure, i didn't see it coming and was terrifed when i saw the article tittle: ''harry potter gay twist'' as i had no idea what it was going to be, but now i look back on the last books, and the other books it kin of makes a bit of sense. As magic_is_might said in the post above, the signs that make it not obvious but give hints are he trusted snape, and didn;tbring down Grindlewald straight away. It does not at all change how i look at him.

2. Do you believe we have met any other characters in the story that might be gay?

Thats hard to say I can't imagine any of the other charactersgay, but you never know Yet again..colin creevy really had a thing for harry no joking. I don't know really.


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  #67  
Old October 20th, 2007, 9:34 pm
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter

1. The fact that Dumbledore is gay adds a whole new dimension to his character and to the story. Were you surprised? Does it really change anything?

I was very surprised and had not even thought about his sexuality as a factor. I suppose it's like having a grandfather or any kind of father figure--you don't think about his sexuality. Going back through the books I find zero clues of him being gay, which makes me wonder if this is just a publicity stunt or some kind of agenda on Rowling's part.

2. Do you believe we have met any other characters in the story that might be gay?

I always thought Lupin was gay. I always thought his full moon transformation was a metaphor for having a deep secret and being gay. It would have been more tasteful, I think, to make homosexuality something that can be shown through metaphor instead of a blatant statement on the author's behalf.

3. Do you believe that the Magical World has a more well-developed understanding of "chemical attraction" and thus negating any issue of sexuality? In other words, physical attraction is more than simply genetics, but could in fact be magical and therefore a non issue?

Good question. I think the wizarding world is very aware of bodily chemicals (after all they have potions) and that they understand the sexual impulse as a chemical one. I think they know when to separate magic and human nature. It would be interesting if the wizarding world has psychiatry or the like.

4. The issue of a wizard's/witch's blood status was a major cause of indifference before Voldemort's downfall. With that in mind, would being gay make much of a difference or is it simply who you are born to that makes the big difference?

If Rowling is making an allusion to Nazism and blood status that happened in Muggle history repeating itself in Wizarding History (and I think she is), then YES homosexuality would be deemed as negative and these wizards would be lumped in with people with "bad blood."


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  #68  
Old October 20th, 2007, 9:37 pm
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter

Quote:
Originally Posted by ihamlin35 View Post
Is anyone else pretty angry about this? I think it was a bad move by JK. And don't say I can't really tell off JK for doing this, because at this point, I think I can. If she had said something about it earlier, it probably would have been easier to accept. But several months after the last book is out? Come on JK.
Out of interest, what do you think is problematic about this? Does it make a difference to anything? Surely Dumbledore's sexual orientation is simply background detail, since it doesn't influence the plot in any major way. If it wasn't for the relationship between Dumbledore and Grindelwald, which is only back story anyway, who Dumbledore goes ten pin bowling with is completely irrelevant.

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  #69  
Old October 20th, 2007, 9:40 pm
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter

I have to confess JKRowling's revelation troubles me somewhat. Not because I dislike the fact Dumbledore is gay--I agree with those who say it adds an interesting dimension to the series.

But I'm a little concerned about why JKR is choosing to reveal this now. I have this tiny niggling concern that she is trying to start a controversy and renew interest in Harry Potter now that the series is over. It feels disloyal to say this, but it feels like a publicity stunt to me.

If this is the wrong thread in which to express this fear, could you direct me to one more appropriate?


  #70  
Old October 20th, 2007, 9:42 pm
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter

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Originally Posted by Tenshi View Post
IMO it she was serious about it. You could also ask. Why should she joke about such a topic?
I don't know, but in the news coverage, I read, she also "revealed her marriage to Harry Potter." I thought possibly she was giving a flip answer, as she sometimes does.

Since she has not come out with any clarification, muddling, or back-pedaling statements, I guess that weighs in on the side her being serious.


  #71  
Old October 20th, 2007, 9:42 pm
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter

I think she revealed it because 1) someone asked and 2) it had to happen eventually. One of the things I like best about her (and I'm sure many of you will agree) is that she's always honest with her readers, no matter what. She wouldn't say Dumbledore was straight or gay just to either prevent losing readers or stir up controversy.


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  #72  
Old October 20th, 2007, 9:47 pm
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter

I'll quote the opening post to clear up what this thread should be about:

Quote:
In light of JK Rowling's recent revelation concerning Albus Dumbledore's sexuality, I am opening up a general thread for the debate of homosexuality as a whole in the HP world. Before this revelation, the topic of homosexuality was treated very much as a non-issue. People's prejudice got in the way of a good discussion and as there was really no evidence in the novels, many argued it wasn't relevant. Well, now that's all changed.

The aim of this discussion is to see how prevalent homosexuality is in Harry's world, how important an issue it is to the world at large and whether there are other characters we can speculate might be gay. It is not a debate on the nature of homosexuality. I have asked some questions below, which you may wish to answer.
Please do not turn this into a right or wrong debate! Thank you.

Also keep in mind that homophobic remarks may get you banned!



Last edited by Moriath; October 20th, 2007 at 9:50 pm.
  #73  
Old October 20th, 2007, 9:49 pm
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter

Quote:
Originally Posted by ihamlin35 View Post
I'm not saying it makes any difference plot-wise. Gay or not, it's still the same well-written plot that only JK could pull off. But if you've read the books enough times, surely you become attached to Dumbledore as a character. And after years of just assuming Dumbledore was straight, and then hearing JK said he is gay, it taints the character for me. I may be in the vast minority here, but I think it really just taints the series as a whole.
I don't understand why it's a taint. Anyway, if you are saying that homosexuality is a flaw, then that is off-topic because Morgoth said in the opening post:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Morgoth View Post
NOTE:
This thread, nay, this forum will not tolerate homophobia or Dumbledore bashing. Whether you agree or not with homosexuality is not the topic here.

And I just remembered that Elphias Doge was clearly in love with Dumbledore!


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  #74  
Old October 20th, 2007, 9:51 pm
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter

Let's not turn this into a fight guys. People are allowed to state their opinions so long as they do so politely, intelligently and without bashing either homosexuality or JKR.


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  #75  
Old October 20th, 2007, 9:56 pm
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter

Funnily enough, it wasn't until I read the news report that I ever that of Dumbledore's sexuality. It's just something I have never really given much thought to, if any thought at all. So it does come as a surprise.

The only thing it changes for me is the way I view the Dumbledore/Gindelwalt situation. After reading DH, I have often wondered why Dumbledore seemed to imbibe Grindelwalt's views to this extend as it seemed so out of character. Dumbledore always seemed more of an independent type of person, who thinks outside the box. But in light of this new information, it does make a lot more sense, as love has such a great impact on us, and in some extreme cases, can almost transform people into different characters.


  #76  
Old October 20th, 2007, 9:57 pm
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter

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Originally Posted by anabel View Post
And I just remembered that Elphias Doge was clearly in love with Dumbledore!
Maybe it was just hero-worship, or you could be right. There also can be strong and intense two-way friendships that are not necessarily sexual, especially around adolescence. It can also happen when kindred spirits happen to meet at a time when they are otherwise isolated and lonely. I always took Dumbledore's and Gellert's relationship that way, until this latest.

I would be sorry, especially in the context of children's literature, to see every close same-sex friendship labeled as sexual.

I have to agree with the commenter who remarked that, in light of all this, Slughorn was a homosexual stereotype, and I would say Grubbly-Plank was another.



Last edited by fruitia pickleweed; October 20th, 2007 at 10:01 pm.
  #77  
Old October 20th, 2007, 9:59 pm
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter

1. The fact that Dumbledore is gay adds a whole new dimension to his character and to the story. Were you surprised? Does it really change anything?

I was surprised, but who wouldn't be? Sexuality isn't something you would really think about with a character like Dumbledore. For one, the entire time we've known his character he has been quite old. The incident with Grindelwald was in his youth, remember? I think that might be what you were going for by saying that sages seem to be asexual. They're really just older and deal with sex very much.

2. Do you believe we have met any other characters in the story that might be gay?

Well, here's the thing. If you believe that people are BORN with a sexual preference, than I would have to say that every character that has shown attraction to the other sex would NOT be gay. However, this is not the case when it comes to homosexuality. The truth is, there are a lot of people that consider homosexuality but end up heterosexual and vice-versa. To put it another way, you could argue the sexuality of lots of the characters one way or the other. But the fact of the matter is, calling someone gay is a misnomer. You can suppress homosexual feelings or give into them. The argument boils down to whether or not those feelings are wrong.

3. Do you believe that the Magical World has a more well-developed understanding of "chemical attraction" and thus negating any issue of sexuality? In other words, physical attraction is more than simply genetics, but could in fact be magical and therefore a non issue?

I think the "Magical World" isn't as fleshed out as people want it to be. I doubt Rowling has given it enough thought to make an argument out of it.

4. The issue of a wizard's/witch's blood status was a major cause of indifference before Voldemort's downfall. With that in mind, would being gay make much of a difference or is it simply who you are born to that makes the big difference?

Actually, this question is going the wrong direction entirely. By defining people as straight/gay you are actually separating them in the same way that Death Eaters separated magical from not magical. The point of indifference is for there NOT to be a difference.

If it's such a big deal not to discriminate against people, why do we make SUCH a big deal about deciding who is gay and who is not? Isn't that exactly what discrimination is? It's like when people argue against racism while at the same time focusing on how different the races are. It's ridiculous!

If people can be honest with themselves about sexuality, they'll find it's a lot more complex than WHO IS STRAIGHT AND WHO IS GAY. A lot of people, especially those with emotionally difficult pasts, struggle with identity. Say in a moment of confusion you kiss someone of the same sex. Are you now gay? Are you completely defined by the choices you make, or is there gray area?

To conclude, if we want to stop discrimination, we have to stop putting people in boxes. Maybe in a perfect world (or the Magical World) we'd let people's sexuality be a personal thing like it's supposed to be and stop wrapping their identity around it. That's the big issue. It SHOULDN'T make a difference that Dumbledore was gay, but it does to our society because sexuality isn't about just relationships in our culture it DEFINES WHO YOU ARE. This is the real evil.


  #78  
Old October 20th, 2007, 10:05 pm
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter

[removed - directed at other posters]

Personally, I think it's great that Dumbledore was gay. I mean, here we have this world full of characters which we all know and love...just because one of them is gay doesn't change anything. He's still Albus Dumbledore.

It's highly unlikely that every single character in those books would be straight. I just always thought JKR was avoiding bringing the issue up because there's such a split opinion on the matter.

I honestly think it's fantastic news.



Last edited by Jessica; October 20th, 2007 at 10:10 pm. Reason: .
  #79  
Old October 20th, 2007, 10:06 pm
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter

I think it's a great revelation, but terribly pulled off. JK Rowling revealing it in an interview that is. It definitely should have been stated in book 7, now it just kind of seems like a throw in. It would have been quite shocking and the general readers would have known had it been in the book. One thing that I think is great is that she waited so long to tell us. This way, people have read several Harry Potter books and have come to love this character, now that it's revealed he's gay, it won't matter to an entire generation. If she revealed this in book 1, several people would have hated this character because of his sexuality. Now we've all come to know and love this character so him now being revealed as gay won't matter as it could have earlier.



Last edited by AL_Patterson; October 20th, 2007 at 10:11 pm.
  #80  
Old October 20th, 2007, 10:10 pm
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Re: Homosexuality in Harry Potter

1. The fact that Dumbledore is gay adds a whole new dimension to his character and to the story. Were you surprised? Does it really change anything?

I was surprised but it has not changed anything for me. Dumbledore is still the same man he always was. His pursuits and sentiments are as unchanged as his actions. For me he will always be a great man and while I applaud the news, I do not think it changes him at all.



2. Do you believe we have met any other characters in the story that might be gay?

I have always speculated about Sirius and Remus. Someone else mentioned Tonks being Bi-sexual and I think that is possible as well.

3. Do you believe that the Magical World has a more well-developed understanding of "chemical attraction" and thus negating any issue of sexuality? In other words, physical attraction is more than simply genetics, but could in fact be magical and therefore a non issue?


4. The issue of a wizard's/witch's blood status was a major cause of indifference before Voldemort's downfall. With that in mind, would being gay make much of a difference or is it simply who you are born to that makes the big difference?

For these last two questions, I think that we have seen racism and other forms of censure against half-breeds and muggle-borns. I see no reason why homosexuality would be treated differently in the magical world than in the muggle one. I think that they would have the same views and misgivings about it that our society does. I have seem nothing in the magical world to suggest that they are more evolved or more accepting than muggles nor do I believe that they would not have the same prejudices.


 
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