alright so here’s the thing-i grew up quiet and shy and unpopular and always felt like i stood out as the one mixed kid with crazy puffy curly hair and as young as 3rd or 4th grade i remember straightening it and liking myself so much more with my hair that way.
so when i say that i saw hermione granger as black, i mean that i needed to see her that way. hermione was the only character i knew that looked like me. i was hermione for halloween maybe 4 years in a row and it was the one night of the year when i would feel like my curls made me better, not worse.
and then the movies came out, and hermione was this gorgeous pale girl with wavy hair, and that was how i started to see her, and i started to identify less with hermione, even though i still love her and the books.
the point is, kids of colour will see characters and identify with them if the race is ambiguous. we will hold on to them like crazy, and feel beautiful in a way that the books we read and the movies we see do not allow us to feel. when you take a character that can be read as PoC and cast a white actress (ie hunger games or harry potter), it takes away one more source of self esteem.