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Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2



View Poll Results: Check all that apply
Snape is a true Hero 161 34.40%
Snape shows a lot of heroism but he is still flawed 340 72.65%
Snape's motivations detract from his heroism 95 20.30%
Snape truly loved Lily 344 73.50%
Snape was obsessed with Lily 153 32.69%
Snape loved the idea of Lily 73 15.60%
Snape cared for Harry 56 11.97%
Snape did not care for Harry at first but came to later 196 41.88%
Snape never cared for Harry 137 29.27%
Snape's treatment of Harry and Neville is understandable 134 28.63%
Snape's treatment of Harry and Neville was wrong 278 59.40%
Snape made up for the wrongs he did 295 63.03%
Snape did not make up for the wrongs he did 60 12.82%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 468. You may not vote on this poll

 
 
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  #1  
Old July 26th, 2007, 6:08 pm
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Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

I'm starting a new version to incorporate some new information from interviews and also to give this thread a fresh start.

JKR on Today"Did you always know Snape was going to be a hero?"
JK: "Is he a hero? He's spiteful, and a bully. But immensely brave."



1. Snape is revealed to have been acting throughout the series out of love for Lily, how does this effect your view of his actions in the series - his "murder" of Dumbledore, his treatment of Sirius.

2. Why do you think Snape chose to become a Death Eater?

3. How do the revelations of DH impact your view of Snape's treatment of Harry and Neville throughout the series?

4. What do you think of Snape's actions after learning who Volemort had targetted with the prophecy?

5. What do you think of Snape's actions after Lily's death. How do you think this death has affected his character?

6. What do you think are Snape's major strengths? What are his major flaws?

7. Do you believe Snape came to care about Harry?

8. Do you think Snape should have been sorted in Slytherin? Would he have made the same choices if he had been sorted elsewhere?

9. There are all kinds of bravery in this series, what characteristics of Snape's make him brave? In what sense is he a hero.

10. Did Snape fully redeem himself in your eyes? In Harry's?

AS THIS IS STILL A HIGHLY CONTROVERSIAL AND SENSITIVE TOPIC WE WOULD LIKE TO ASK EVERYONE TO PLEASE BE SENSITIVE TO OTHERS OPINIONS. THIS MEANS NO GLOATING AS WELL AS NO BASHING. CONSEQUENCES WILL BE SEVERE.

Additionally please read How to have a pleasant conversation on any topic and Character Bashing/Worship: aka Shades of Gray BEFORE POSTING IN THIS THREAD


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Last edited by Jessica; July 26th, 2007 at 11:42 pm.
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  #2  
Old July 26th, 2007, 6:30 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

1. Snape is revealed to have been acting throughout the series out of love for Lily, how does this effect your view of his actions in the series - his "murder" of Dumbledore, his treatment of Sirius.

The murder isn't a murder anymore, as it has now been revealed. Snapes treatment of Sirius to me shows a man who, no matter how he tries, cannot forget the past.

2. Why do you think Snape chose to become a Death Eater?

From the small snippets we had of his early life, I would guess that from being friendless to having a group of friends, he would have been easilly led; if they joined the DE's and encouraged him to do the same, he would have. He didn't seem to have the same view of things as a young boy as say Draco

3. How do the revelations of DH impact your view of Snape's treatment of Harry and Neville throughout the series?

As I said above, Snape's not a man to let the past lie quietly, and I think the past motivated a lot of his treatment of Harry and Neville. Regardless of the DH revelations, I think he was way too harsh on two young boys who didn't understand why he hated them so much.

4. What do you think of Snape's actions after learning who Volemort had targetted with the prophecy?

In some ways good (his desire to save Lily) but in other ways despicable. He didn't care about James or Harry, whether they lived or died, whether LV was ultimately defeated, He wanted Lily saved for his own selfish reasons.

5. What do you think of Snape's actions after Lily's death. How do you think this death has affected his character?

I think it's made him make a lot of choices he would not otherwise have made. Had Lily survived, Snape would have felt justified to carry on as a DE as LV had shown himself to be a compassionate leader, and therefore right

6. What do you think are Snape's major strengths? What are his major flaws?

Haven't decided on these yet... I need another reading

7. Do you believe Snape came to care about Harry?

No, I don't. Not Harry as a person in his own right. But as LILY'S SON... yes, a little

8. Do you think Snape should have been sorted in Slytherin? Would he have made the same choices if he had been sorted elsewhere?

I think he would have turned out very different had he been in another house.

9. There are all kinds of bravery in this series, what characteristics of Snape's make him brave? In what sense is he a hero.

Again, I need another reading before I comment on this

10. Did Snape fully redeem himself in your eyes? In Harry's?

No, not fully. He revealed why he did some things, but there was still no excuse for his harsh treatment of a lot of the students


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  #3  
Old July 26th, 2007, 6:31 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

Do you believe Snape came to care about Harry?

After much thought and consideration, I believe that Snape did care for Harry at the end. When Snape's memories poured out after Harry revealed himself in the Shrieking Shack, if Snape did not care about Harry, why didn't he give Harry only the memories pertaining to what Harry needed to do to thwart Voldemort? Instead, he freely gives Harry all those memories pertaining to Harry's mother. I think Snape cared enough about Harry to give him all those memories so that Harry could understand why things happened the way they did and to let Harry know that Snape was truly remorseful about his mother's death. If Snape didn't care, he wouldn't have shared those most intimate details with Harry that didn’t directly involve the mission.

One last thing, after rereading the chapter, The Prince's Tale, I noticed that when Snape conjures the patronus to DD, he doesn't refute caring about Harry. I think this was a good way to answer the question without having to admit that he does indeed care about Harry.


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  #4  
Old July 26th, 2007, 6:34 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

Yay! A poll! I love polls. I chose (and will explain):

Snape is a true Hero
Snape shows a lot of heroism but he is still flawed

I chose both of these because I don't think the fact that he is flawed detracts from my definition of "True Hero".

Snape truly loved Lily
Snape was obsessed with Lily
Snape loved the idea of Lily

Sounds weird, don't it, picking all three? But I think each applied at one time or another. At the time of the hillside conversation, Lily seemed to be all Snape thought of (until Dumbledore brought his attention to Harry and James). That would be the obsession.
Throughout a lot of "The Prince's Tale", I think there may have been a bit of idolization of Snape's part. No canon to back it up, ATM, just my opinion.
I think that by the end of his life, Snape had come to truly love Lily for who she was. He learned that he could love her, but that other people mattered too. He certainly seemed to care about Harry's fate and how Harry thought of him.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jessica
9. There are all kinds of bravery in this series, what characteristics of Snape's make him brave? In what sense is he a hero.
The most obvious instance of this is Snape going back to spy on Voldemort in book 4, even though he is two hours late, and probably not on Voldemort's good side. I'm sure Snape knows this, since he's described as "pale". Dumbledore is also concerned for him, and silently watches the door even after Snape has left the room. In fact, Snape goes back to Voldemort quite a lot, and ends up staying around him after HBP. At the beginning of DH, Voldemort probes Snape's mind using Legilimency. Thankfully, Snape is successful, but if he wasn't...? Snape is putting himself in constant danger of being "unsuccessful".
But the less obvious one is the one I'm most proud of. Snape had the courage to remain alive, despite wishing himself dead, to continue to do what Lily would have wanted. Not only that, but he manages to tackle his own prejudices: at first, he is admonished by Lily, who tells him that she is no different from the other people he has called "Mudblood". In the very last memory we see of Snape, he snaps at Phineas Nigellus for using that same word.
The very fact that he has done all this good work, and doesn't stop even when he's gushing buckets of blood has gotta be pretty dang heroic.
I think everyone is aware of Snape's bad side. He can be unfair, and he can be mean. But how is that any different many of the other characters in the series, or even real people in general. I don't think it takes away from anything good Snape has done.

BIG EDIT

I totally forgot about the other poll choices:

Snape did not care for Harry at first but came to later

Pretty straightforward.

Snape's treatment of Harry and Neville is understandable
Snape's treatment of Harry and Neville was wrong

I think that practically all of what Snape did was understandable, and that some of it was wrong.


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Last edited by ignisia; July 26th, 2007 at 6:47 pm.
  #5  
Old July 26th, 2007, 6:34 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

That poll was harder for me to vote on then I thought it would be. Basically though I still think over all Snape is not a good person and he is not a hero. He did do brave things but for all the wrong reasons and while doing those brave things he still treated innocent people like dirt. He was a death eater who just happened to be in love with the idea of who Lily was and what she meant to him.


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  #6  
Old July 26th, 2007, 6:46 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

I think it is interesting that the most agreement is that Snape loved Lily and also that very few people think that Snape cared for Harry, although some believe he cared for Harry later. So just translating the poll results into words: Snape loved Lily and did things for Harry and possibly for the Order because of his love for Lily. The question I think we should try to answer through discussion is, in the end, did Snape come to care for Harry? Hopefully JKR will answer this in her chat...and I kind of hope that people here will submit that as a question. http://livechat.bloomsbury.com/index.php
So yeah...I personally think he did come to care...which I said before. My main evidence is from how Snape reacted when Dumbledore told Snape that Harry had to sacrifice himself in order for Voldemort to be destroyed. Snape was angry at Dumbledore because Snape believed Dumbledore was raising Harry for the slaughter. This can be interpreted as Snape was angry that Dumbledore was doing this to Lily's child, but I look at it more as Snape was angry because he couldn't believe Dumbledore was doing this to Harry.

What do you guys think?

Question to Jessica: is there not going to be a link to the previous version available?


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Last edited by magical4maia; July 26th, 2007 at 6:52 pm. Reason: double post
  #7  
Old July 26th, 2007, 6:52 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

Quote:
Originally Posted by ignisia View Post
Yay! A poll! I love polls.
I like polls for controversial threads because I think they allow us to see how much we agree on and our differences become a little less significant. Also I like polls.


Quote:
Originally Posted by magical4maia View Post
Question to Jessica: is there not going to be a link to the previous version available?
Eh? It's right here: Severus Snape: Character Analysis.


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  #8  
Old July 26th, 2007, 7:01 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kadaj010
Excerpt from the JKR interview on the Today Show

JKR : "The deaths were all very, very considered. I don't even kill fiction characters lighty."

MV: Was Snape always intended to be a hero?

JKR: " Is he a hero? You see, I don't see him really as a hero".

MV: Really?

JKR: "But, yeah. He's spiteful . He's a bully. All these things are still true of Snape even at the end of this book. em, But was he brave? Yes immensely."
What I find slightly funny about this is that JKR was always telling us that she considers courage to be one of the most important qualities - hence her distinct favouring of Gryffindor House, I guess. And now she says that yes, he was immensly brave, but no, that does not make him a hero.
If somebody asked me how to define a hero, my very first answer would be, 'somebody courageous or really brave'.

So, just for fun, I did a search and http://www.thefreedictionary.com/hero gave me this:
Quote:
hero
1. In mythology and legend, a man, often of divine ancestry, who is endowed with great courage and strength, celebrated for his bold exploits, and favored by the gods.
2. A person noted for feats of courage or nobility of purpose, especially one who has risked or sacrificed his or her life: soldiers and nurses who were heroes in an unpopular war.
3. A person noted for special achievement in a particular field: the heroes of medicine. See Synonyms at celebrity.
4. The principal male character in a novel, poem, or dramatic presentation.
3. and 4. do not have much bearing here, and well, nobility of purpose? OK, not so much.
But feats of courage, one who has risked or sacrifices his life? Definitely.
So I think I will politely agree to disagree with Mrs Rowling on this.


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  #9  
Old July 26th, 2007, 7:02 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

Sorry, but i couldn't believe my eyes reading Rowling's statements about Snape!!! How could she say that he isn't a hero?? Sure, she has very right I mean she created the character but i so do not agree with it! In my opinion, Snape is definitely a hero, not a your typical 'good' hero but a hero nevertheless.

The argument that he did that all because of his love for Lily, is a bit too easy so to speak that might have been his reason at the beginning, of course it was the catalyst but his later actions reveal that he changed a lot maybe not his character, he was still nasty and a bully to his students (wonder if that had to do just a tiny bit with his cover especially in front of his Slytherin students, the emphasis lies on tiny i am not excusing here his behaviour), but his morals must have changed. I mean he could have protected Harry without going to lengths protecting Lupin, Hogwarts students and so on. He himself said that he has only seen people die he couldn't save!

I have written that before i have seen the new thread, so i am going to that now...

1. Snape is revealed to have been acting throughout the series out of love for Lily, how does this effect your view of his actions in the series - his "murder" of Dumbledore, his treatment of Sirius.

Sorry, but i refuse to believe that his love for Lily was his only motivation as i stated above.

2. Why do you think Snape chose to become a Death Eater?
Snape was a lonely boy but quite talented, the problem was that this was appreciated by the wrong people. I guess his desire was a appreciation for his talents and the feeling of protection, belonging to a clique that gave the apperance of friendship, he probably envied the Marauders as any lonely boy would do.

3. How do the revelations of DH impact your view of Snape's treatment of Harry and Neville throughout the series?
His treatment was of course wrong that can not be excused but be it that Harry was the total image of James, his archrival...Actually a lot members have already thoroughly interpreted his actions, there is nothing new i can add.

4. What do you think of Snape's actions after learning who Volemort had targetted with the prophecy?
Well, he was on Voldemorts side so anyone on his side would have done the same. He didn't know that the prophecy might involve Lily so his actions afterwards should excuse him as we all know Snape wasn't a cold human being with a selfish mission just to clear his name or earn Lily's forgiveness, he actually cared later as seen in DH. Everybody deserves a second chance.

5. What do you think of Snape's actions after Lily's death. How do you think this death has affected his character?
He became a tragic hero because he deserved some happiness but it was never given to him.

6. What do you think are Snape's major strengths? What are his major flaws?
Major strenghts: Loyalty, Bravery, Love, Compassion...
Major Flaws: Prejudices, Bearing grudges, Bullying...


7. Do you believe Snape came to care about Harry?
Yes, in a way...

8. Do you think Snape should have been sorted in Slytherin? Would he have made the same choices if he had been sorted elsewhere?
No, anything else would have been better...No, his actions would surely be different...

9. There are all kinds of bravery in this series, what characteristics of Snape's make him brave? In what sense is he a hero.
Too many to choose...

10. Did Snape fully redeem himself in your eyes? In Harry's?
YES


  #10  
Old July 26th, 2007, 7:08 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jessica View Post
I like polls for controversial threads because I think they allow us to see how much we agree on and our differences become a little less significant. Also I like polls.




Eh? It's right here: Severus Snape: Character Analysis.
Yea polls!!!
Thanks for the link!!!

BookWhizbee...check out what people put down for Snape being the anti-hero:
Quote:
Originally Posted by silver ink pot View Post
I believe she meant he is an "anti-hero" or Byronic hero - not your normal sort of hero, but someone who does brave things almost in spite of his own nature. We had a thread about this before HBP came out - we've actually been saying this for years.

From Wikipedia:

* conflicting emotions or moodiness
* self-critical and introspective
* struggles with integrity
* a distaste for social institutions and social norms
* being an exile, an outcast, or an outlaw
* a lack of respect for rank and privilege
* a troubled past
* being cynical, demanding, and/or arrogant
* often self-destructive
* troubles with the opposite sex
* loner, often rejected from society


In some ways, Sirius is an anti-hero, too, or a tragic hero with flaws. Basically, everyone is flawed in some way, but that doesn't mean they aren't brave.

JKR pretty much said the exact same words about James - he was "immensely brave."
blueberry0_5 I agree with you a lot, awesome points...check out my answers on the previous version....now that there's a link to it! Yea Jessica!!!! Admins are awesome!!! HP fans are awesome!!! Yea discussions!

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Last edited by magical4maia; July 26th, 2007 at 7:12 pm. Reason: forgot to add something
  #11  
Old July 26th, 2007, 7:09 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

I agreed with so many of Jessica's options that I decided it would be easier to list the ones I did not check, and explain why:

1) His motivations detract from his heroism - NO.
Love and true remorse, both of which I am convinced Snape felt, are positive, worthy motivations.

2) Since I believe Snape came eventually to care for Harry, I did not check that he cared for Harry, or that he never cared for Harry.

3) Snape made up for his wrongdoing - NO.
This is not to say that he was a bad person at all. I don't actually believe there was anything he could do to fully make up for his wrongdoing. If he had lavished Harry with affection and attention, sent him anomymous presents, AND done all the brave and self-sacrificing things he did do in the war as well, I would give the same answer. Nothing he could do would bring back James and Lily. Deaths were a reasonably predictable consequence of the choices Snape made (not so much the prophecy as the general decision to become a servant of Lord Voldemort), so I consider him to an extent responsible for them despite his sincere efforts to prevent the damage he had caused by going to Dumbledore.

The reason I nonetheless see Snape as heroic, is that to me, heroism is not defined by success. Snape made what I see as a huge effort to make up for the wrongs he had done, the difficulty of which Rowling described in terms that have repeatedly moved me to tears, going so far as, in the end, to die in the attempt. I honor that struggle.


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  #12  
Old July 26th, 2007, 7:09 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

I find JKR's answer to that question very enlightening, and hopefully many of the people discussing Snape will also.

Here we have the creator of Severus Snape saying, he was not necessarily a hero. Even though Snape’s actions did help immensely in the takedown of Voldemort, he was still more than flawed.

Harry’s more of a real hero to me, because he put other before him, was selfless, and helped almost anyone – even Draco Malfoy, who caused nothing but grief for Harry since his 11th birthday.

Snape did not put others before him, he was not selfless, and he certainly did not help anyone in need.

However, we can’t ignore that fact that the last 17 years of his life were lived out of love, a love which I believe was true, however unrequited it was.

As JKR says, Snape was brave, very brave – but not in the heroic sense that, say, Harry was. For me, it’s very difficult to put aside his spitefulness and tendency to bully Harry nonstop and call Snape “the hero”.

Still, my opinion on Snape changed after book seven, and part of me feels as though Snape was just a big misunderstood guy in love. (but then I remember the bullying, and I don’t know what to think )


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Last edited by BelleSnowyOwl; July 26th, 2007 at 7:12 pm.
  #13  
Old July 26th, 2007, 7:16 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

Quote:
Originally Posted by ignisia View Post
Snape truly loved Lily
Snape was obsessed with Lily
Snape loved the idea of Lily

Sounds weird, don't it, picking all three?
I did as well. In addition to the possibility (well argued by you) that he felt different things at different times, I do not find these three ideas about a person's love to be mutually incompatible. All three can be true simultaneously.

I would also like to point out that obsession is not necessarily a bad thing. It can be a source of strength that allows people to achieve things they otherwise could/would not. As Snape's love for Lily illustrates, in my view. It's a question of degree and of the object at which the obsession is aimed.


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  #14  
Old July 26th, 2007, 7:27 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

1. Snape is revealed to have been acting throughout the series out of love for Lily, how does this effect your view of his actions in the series - his "murder" of Dumbledore, his treatment of Sirius.

Well, I do not blame him for Dumbledore's death. Dumbledore asked him to kill him and he was faithful to Dumbledore because he tried to save Lily. His treatment of Sirius was wrong though understandable. Sirius was reminder of everything he hated, James, James and Lily's relationship, and the fact he was not as close to Lily as Sirius was.

2. Why do you think Snape chose to become a Death Eater?

I think he chose to be death eater because Voldemort and crowd seemed to be beyond emotion and love. I believe he wanted to stop loving Lily because it was so painful. I believed he joined them because he thought it might help him stop feeling the pain he had.

3. How do the revelations of DH impact your view of Snape's treatment of Harry and Neville throughout the series?

I still believe it's wrong just like Sirius's treatment but because of DH I understand it, which is all the difference for me.

4. What do you think of Snape's actions after learning who Volemort had targetted with the prophecy?

I believe they were selfish and cowardly, yet brave at the same time. He wanted Dumbledore to save Lily because he loved her. He did not care about her husband or son. Yet he felt remorse and eventually wanted to help them all. The regret he felt is what seperates him from Voldemort and the death eaters.

5. What do you think of Snape's actions after Lily's death. How do you think this death has affected his character?

I think it's what turned him cruel and slightly bitter. He was hurt that he would never be able to be in a relationship with Lily and she died not knowing what he felt for her. She died in love with another man. That hurts.

6. What do you think are Snape's major strengths? What are his major flaws?

Snape's strengths are he can love and regret and go through remorse. His flaws are that selfishness and cowardness sometimes get in the way of that.

7. Do you believe Snape came to care about Harry?

I really belive he cared for Harry. Not only did he care for him as a reminder of his mother but he feared for him when he learned he had to die. He had a hard time showing those emotions but they were there.

8. Do you think Snape should have been sorted in Slytherin? Would he have made the same choices if he had been sorted elsewhere?

I think the fact that he was seperated from Lily changed everything. If he had been in gryffindor it would have changed everything. Being in Slytherin made him succeptable to all the bad ideas that infested Slytherins' ideas. He went throughout the sorting with choosing if he had the choice I know he would have been with Lily.

9. There are all kinds of bravery in this series, what characteristics of Snape's make him brave? In what sense is he a hero.

He was brave because he came back, he loved, and he risked his life to protect something that was so painful to him. In the end he lost that selfishness. To fight for something that you know would never be yours is bravery in itself.

10. Did Snape fully redeem himself in your eyes? In Harry's?

Yes he did redeem himself. We only saw the bitterness from Harry's veiw in the first six books. It looked cruel to us. But it's understandable. Still all along he was fighting for Harry. It somes back to, you can't judge a book by its cover. It think he redeemed himself in Harry's eyes too because like me, I think Harry saw Snape was really fighting for Harry's life all along without gain. He only wanted to protect the last living descendant of the woman he truly loved. Love is the ultimate motivation, reason, and power.


  #15  
Old July 26th, 2007, 7:28 pm
subtlepotions  Female.gif subtlepotions is offline
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

1. Snape is revealed to have been acting throughout the series out of love for Lily, how does this effect your view of his actions in the series - his "murder" of Dumbledore, his treatment of Sirius.

I suspected after HBP that Snape killed Dumbledore at Dumbledore's request, but I could not figure out why his spiteful attitude toward Harry and the other order members seemed so real. He didn't seem to be acting for appearences sake (to stay in Voldemort's good graces), his contempt was way too real. I couldn't understand why, if Snape was really on the side of Dumbledore and the order, he would treat Harry as he has (protecting him, but hating him?). After DH, I understand that he was not acting at all about his feeling toward Harry and Sirius, but that his remorse over his part in Lily's death kept him loyal to Dumbledore and the order until the end. Whatever thirst for power he had that made him join the death eaters was gone after Lily's death, the only feeling he had left was remorse. Snape lost (by his own actions) the only person he ever loved who treated him well (Lily). He is a man who cannot forget the past - this is clear in his unforgiving attitude toward Sirius, Lupin, Harry (who, in Snape's mind (esp. at the beginning) - is James v.2) but at the same time he cannot forget Lily, and that Harry is her son.

2. Why do you think Snape chose to become a Death Eater?

fascination with the dark arts + growing up in a powerless situation (father abusing mother) = death eater in training

3. How do the revelations of DH impact your view of Snape's treatment of Harry and Neville throughout the series?

it's still pretty bad (esp. Neville) but i can see how he could be a nasty piece of work and still be anti-voldemort. the man should not be teaching children.

4. What do you think of Snape's actions after learning who Volemort had targetted with the prophecy?

panic - it's his worst memory all over again. he's betrayed Lily and this time he's ready to do more than sleep outside her common room at Hogwart's to make it right.

5. What do you think of Snape's actions after Lily's death. How do you think this death has affected his character?

His actions after Lily's death make him a hero in my book. He could have given up, but he decided to help protect Harry and bring down Voldemort.

6. What do you think are Snape's major strengths? What are his major flaws?

strength - unbelievable skill as a wizard - rivaling dumbledore and certainly better than voldemort. definitely brave.

weakness - unfair to students. git.

7. Do you believe Snape came to care about Harry?

not sure about this. I think by the end, he could see that Harry's different from James and probably had an upbringing more similiar to his own (after seeing scenes from Harry's brain in OOTP).

8. Do you think Snape should have been sorted in Slytherin? Would he have made the same choices if he had been sorted elsewhere?

hmm... still undecided about the whole sorting thing.

9. There are all kinds of bravery in this series, what characteristics of Snape's make him brave? In what sense is he a hero.

he's brave because he can look Voldemort in the eye and lie. He put his best strengths to work for the order.

10. Did Snape fully redeem himself in your eyes? In Harry's?

yes, and I hope in Harry's too. I think so, cause he named little Al after him. but not the first name, so, maybe not 100%


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  #16  
Old July 26th, 2007, 7:38 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

Snape shows a lot of heroism but he is still flawed
I think all of JK Rowling's characters are flawed - that is why I like her books so much.

Snape's motivations detract from his heroism
I have always beleived that if Snape hadn't loved Lily then he would have remained a Death Eater. His love of Lily saved him from damaging his soul, but it was only much later - post GoF that I think he really started to change. I think he was very heroic, but I think he was motivated by guilt and grief rather than any concept of morallity. I would also like to say at this point that most "heroes" in real life (as in war heroes) are generally flawed people and some downright unpleasant.

Snape truly loved Lily
I do beleive that he truly loved her. Some people respond to their feelings in inappropriate ways, that does not change the nature of the feelings.

Snape's treatment of Harry and Neville is understandable
Snape's treatment of Harry and Neville was wrong

Some people consider these to statement as contradictory - I do not. I understand why he treated Harry and Neville that way, I understand the psychology of it - however I think it was wrong. I do not see it as that terrible though. He never physically harmed anyone, and I think these forums are full of people with teacher horror stories. Naturally anyone behaving that way in real life should be immediately dismissed. But that option wasn't open to Dumbledore. (And I poersonally believe Snape hated teaching) It was bad; it should never have happened, but Harry and Neville survived.

Snape made up for the wrongs he did
As far as he was able to I beleive he did. I think he was absolutely suicidal after Lily's death. I think he lived as a form of penance - that every day was a torment to him - especially after Harry came to the school. He would have killed himself, but he lived only to make up for his wrongs - I'm not sure anyone else could ask any more of him.
Snape was a very judgemental man. Judgemental and unforgiving. Unfortunately this judgement and lack of forgiveness was turned against himself for causing Lily's death. He never forgave himself for that. He often projected the guilt he felt onto others - like in the shrieking shack scene - that was as much about Snape assuaging his own guilt as wanting revenge.
Snape genuinely felt remorse for what he had done, but because he could never forgive himself, he condemned himself, and was never able to get over it. He could never escape his own condemnation - hence his bitterness.
Ultimately he led a sad, lonely life mourning Lily and hating himself - and if you hate yourself you cannot love and respect others.
ETA I think Snape made up for his wrongdoing because ultimately Harry could not have defeated Voldemort without him

Quote:
Originally Posted by zgirnius
I would also like to point out that obsession is not necessarily a bad thing.
Yes I agree!


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Last edited by CathyWeasley; July 26th, 2007 at 7:48 pm.
  #17  
Old July 26th, 2007, 7:40 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

Ah Rowling,what have u done?You've started the never ending debate.At least we'll have alot to discuss(till she answers all the questions).

The worst thing about Snape was not just his flaws,but that he allowed them to take control of him so complelty.His love for the dark arts and his reluctancy to change causes him to lose th only thing valuable to him.His hate for James continues to consume him,he cannot see the good in Harry,who is inheritenly like his mother(IMo apart form his thirst for adveture he ws little in common with James),if he had shown a little fairness he may have seen some of Lily in Harry,it may have provided some smalll comfort.


  #18  
Old July 26th, 2007, 7:42 pm
magical4maia  Female.gif magical4maia is offline
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

Here are some of Jessica's questions that I am a little curious about: [Note: I was wondering Jessica what your choices were or if all of these questions were partly what you feel?]

Snape's motivations detract from his heroism
Snape never cared for Harry
Snape's treatment of Harry and Neville is understandable
Snape did not make up for the wrongs he did

None of these are voted by a very high majority, and so I was wondering what people thought of this or why?

I only agreed with one and that was that Snape's treatment to Harry and Neville's is understandable. I put this because I felt that it was understandable considering Snape's character, but I also checked that it was wrong. I think Snape, who was teased as a child, was acting on one of his bitter, grudge-holding flaws by treating Neville and Harry the way he did. I think it is important to note, however, that unlike James, who always picked on Snape's looks, Snape usually avoided picking on people's looks, and focused rather on their character or magic skill. (except for Hermione, which I think is related to what TheBlackSister pointed out:
Quote:
Hermione - I think the reason Snape is mean to her is because she is very much like Lily. She is extremely intelligent, has a very logical mind not unlike Snape's own (remember how excited she was about his Potions riddle in Book 1). So, basically, I think he doesn't like her due to the memories she inadvertently calls back.
As for the other poll questions:
...and I know I've mentioned it several times (sorry for the broken record)...I don't think Snape was solely motivated by his love for Lily in all of his actions.
...one of which is that I think Snape did eventually care for Harry (and Dumbledore and probably a few other people)

...and finally, the question I am most confused that there is about 20% on...is did Snape make up for the wrongs he did...so I was wondering if the people who don't believe he made up for his wrongs could say why...I am quite curious as to what points you have for that...(Note: I am not attacking you...I love discussing/arguing because I think it is a good way to come to a better understanding of something...so yea...don't be scared to post or anything)!

...and I think that ends another one of my rather long posts


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  #19  
Old July 26th, 2007, 7:43 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

Quote:
Originally Posted by BelleSnowyOwl View Post
Harry’s more of a real hero to me, because he put other before him, was selfless, and helped almost anyone – even Draco Malfoy, who caused nothing but grief for Harry since his 11th birthday.

Snape did not put others before him, he was not selfless, and he certainly did not help anyone in need.
Snape acted in DH to help Remus Lupin, a man he despised, and a man whose continued existence was not necessary to Dumbledore's plan. To me, this action shows he did, towards the end, come to a point where he saw the value of saving people in need. This is also how I took his statement to Dumbledore that he 'recently' had only watched the deaths of people he could not save. (Meaning, he had come to see the value of saving people when he could).

Quote:
As JKR says, Snape was brave, very brave – but not in the heroic sense that, say, Harry was. For me, it’s very difficult to put aside his spitefulness and tendency to bully Harry nonstop and call Snape “the hero”.
Oh, I agree. Harry was The Hero. To me, however, Snape is a hero.


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  #20  
Old July 26th, 2007, 7:53 pm
BookWhizzbee  Female.gif BookWhizzbee is offline
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis v2

Quote:
Originally Posted by magical4maia View Post
Here are some of Jessica's questions that I am a little curious about:

Snape's motivations detract from his heroism
Snape never cared for Harry
Snape's treatment of Harry and Neville is understandable
Snape did not make up for the wrongs he did

None of these are voted by a very high majority, and so I was wondering what people thought of this or why?
I did check Snape's treatment of Harry and Neville is understandable, too. And I also checked that it is wrong. After all we know about Snape now, I can still not forgive him for being a bullying teacher (or consider it understandable in general), but I can understand why Harry and Neville would be difficult to deal with for him even if he was a better person.

And I checked Snape's motivations detract from his heroism, because while he does fit my definition of hero, he would still be a far greater hero if he had not just done the right things, but also done them for the right reasons, i.e. if he had started thinking along the lines of 'Lily was mugggle-born, and Death Eaters think very little of Muggleborns, but Lily is a great witch, so I guess there's a mistake somewhere in there ... Oh my God, I am totally on the wrong side in this war' instead of 'Oh God, he's going to kill Lily ... must go to Dumbledore'. And similarly in the second war, 'Voldemort must be stopped' instead of 'I must protect Lily's son'.


Quote:
Originally Posted by zgirnius View Post
Oh, I agree. Harry was The Hero. To me, however, Snape is a hero.
Well said!


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Last edited by BookWhizzbee; July 26th, 2007 at 7:55 pm.
 
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