I think what probably gets me deeply into my feelings about this “JKR should have just made her students Of Color to start with, she can’t ret-con and pretend she did it right the first time” is that I grew up with Anne Rice and Anne McCaffery, two female fantasy writers who hated headcanons and fandom and sued people for deviating from their original vision or doing any kinds of derivative works without their express contractual permission.
I feel like people who get irritated with her about defending black!Hermione don’t appreciate how much healthier JKR’s attitude toward the inclusivity movement in her fandom is than theirs was. Or Moffat’s is. Or Gatiss’s. Or Whedon’s. Or Green’s. Or even, until very recently, Lucas’s.
She’s not a PCR, but goddamn, at least she’s passing us the milk rather than pissing in our cornflakes.
…the people who mean something to you at 16, 17 are the people who are getting you through stuff. So I absolutely understand why someone who is hanging on to Harry Potter as a safe place at 13 is excited at 21 to talk about what [Hogwarts] house they’d be in. I don’t think it’s infantile.
J.K Rowling (full interview) I can’t believe Jo understands exactly how I feel about Harry Potter.
Okay, but the first HP book came out in 1997. That was almost twenty years ago. No, JKR was not fully aware of her white/straight/cis privilege at that time. She has had 20 years to get better. She also wrote the first draft on table napkins while working as a single mother of multiple children and receiving public support.
We are allowed to retrospectively critique her lack of inclusivity. We are also allowed to think that perhaps her awareness of the lack of said inclusivity has improved.
Just as a goddamn FOR EXAMPLE, in 1997, if Rowling had tried to pitch Dumbledore, a school headmaster, as openly homosexual, her book would never have been published. Want some evidence? I can do that.
Regulations were introduced for discrimination protections on sexual orientation in employment on 1 December 2003, following the adoption of an EC Directive in 2000, providing for the prohibition of discrimination in employment on the grounds of sexual orientation.
Right, so he (Dumbledore) could have been fired for being gay at any point prior to 2000, even assuming Wizarding law was keeping up with Muggle law, which is a goddamn stretch considering how shoddy trials and evidence are maintained throughout Auror procedurals.
And, regarding “she could have made more students of color in the first place,” um:
After 2000, some argued that racism remains common, and some politicians and public figures have been accused of promoting racist attitudes in the media, particularly with regard to immigration, however race and immigration although related are not the same concepts. There have been growing concerns in recent years about institutional racism in public and private bodies. Although various anti-discrimination laws do exist, according to some sources, most employers in the UK remain institutionally racist including public bodies such as the police and the legal professions.
I’m not saying “JKR has always been conscious of her White Privilege.” I’m not saying “she intended this from the start.” I’m saying, she started this fucking series when she was 25, she got it published when she was 32, and she is now fifty and has millions of dollars, resources, and feedback.
Hey, check it out: she’s had twenty-five years to learn.
Jo Rowling is a white British woman with a Bachelor of Arts in
French and Classics from the University of Exeter. It may very well have taken her this much time and this much exposure to the greater, wider world- outside her very white, very British influences in Tolkien and Dickens- to realize, “Oh, shit, I could/should have made my books more diverse, that’s such a lovely idea, my fans are so wonderful, I love their headcanons, they have taught me so much, I’m really lucky to have learned all of this.”
We want people to grow, don’t we? We want them to expand their minds and change. So can we please stop hating on people who weren’t born into the movement for finding it later?
are you fucking kidding me right now? i can just imagine the rest of the gryffindor boys getting acne and just looking at harry great skin™ potter and being like, “of course you dont get acne. you probably fought a pimple leprechaun as a baby and got glowing skin.”
Dumbledore strode into his office, the weight of a long day heavy on his shoulders. As Headmaster, his day was full of dreary, tedious tasks. But all wasn’t without a silver lining, he supposed. The students had reacted remarkably well, been enthused even, at the prospect of the Triwizard Tournament replacing Quidditch for the year. Pleased, Dumbledore began towards his desk to finish up the day’s work.
Suddenly, he heard a rapping at the window. He spotted an owl hovering in view, a piece of mail clutched in its claws. Puzzled yet intrigued, Dumbledore opened the window and admitted the creature. It dropped the mail into his hand: a Howler.
This was not the first Howler Dumbledore had received, nor, he speculated, would it be his last. With a slightly amused sigh, Dumbledore opened the envelope.
“YOU CAN’T JUST CANCEL QUIDDITCH!!!!!!!!” it screamed, Oliver Wood’s distraught voice echoing through the room.
I love Hogwarts but let’s be honest, Uagadou in Africa sounds incredible
it’s in Africa, where magic originated. think of the power and history in such a place
its address is “mountains of the moon,” in the words of jkr, “carved out of mountains and shrouded in mist”
specialties are astronomy, alchemy, and self-transfiguration??!
14 year olds who can turn into elephants and cheetahs and all these fabulous animals
becoming an animagus is one of the most difficult types of magic and these are fourteen year old kids this is incredible
“many older and more experienced witches and wizards felt threatened… and a formal complaint was lodged with the International Confederation of Wizards by Adrian Tutley (Animagus: gerbil)” !!!!!
also known as my favorite line ever
synchronised transforming like synchronised diving only more magical
extensive training in wandless magic; “I was only waving, I never meant for his chin to fall off”? #priceless
hello this school produced Albus Dumbledore’s successor Babajide Akingbade
i mean no one could ever say Dumbledore wasn’t an immensely talented magician whether you think he was a bad man or not and for someone to fill those shoes they would have to be absolutely talented and Uagadou cultivated such a man
it’s a history of greatness
also i bet ol’ Babajide wasn’t half as morally ambiguous as Dumbledore just sayin’
Dream Messengers to deliver acceptance tokens
not regular, boring owls noooo these amazing creatures that appear as children sleep and leave an inscribed stone in their hands
imagine these kids waking up and finding they’re magical in probably the most magical way possible
especially if they’re from a Muggle family and this is their first real exposure to magic
keeping the token with you as reminder and reassurance of your gift
Uagadou everyone my new #dreamschool
find the full article here (i don’t know, Japan sounds pretty cool too!)
I met a man a couple of years ago who had grown up with a huge amount of money. And he said to me in passing, “You know, money is not the most important thing.” Which is both true, and profoundly ignorant. Because when you have no money, it is absolutely the most important thing. Only someone who has never had to worry can make a statement like that.