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Re: [mythsoc] plots and pocket framistans

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  • Berni Phillips
    From: ... irritated ... basic ... has never, ... Do we know that either of these is really true? We are shown, especially in the first 3
    Message 1 of 32 , Nov 10, 2003
      From: <Stolzi@...>
      >
      > In my re-reading of HP Vol I, I got to the Sorting Hat and paused,
      irritated
      > by something which I believe others have criticized before me: if the
      basic
      > nature and aims of the witch society and of Hogwarts in particular is
      > benevolent, WHY does Hogwarts perpetuate a House, namely Slytherin, which
      has never,
      > seemingly, attracted anyone but bad people who cause trouble?

      Do we know that either of these is really true? We are shown, especially in
      the first 3 books, good witches/wizards as the main characters. Those who
      are not good -- Voldemort and his supporters -- are clearly labeled as such.
      We learn in book 4 that there are other witch schools and they're not all
      run like Hogwarts. The one that reads as German (the one where the soccer
      star who likes Hermione goes) teaches the dark arts as part of its normal
      curriculum.

      As to Slytherin house, I have a couple of thoughts about that. Is it book 5
      where we really get the origin of the houses? When Hogwarts was first
      established, it was thought that Slytherin, the man and his house, would
      play nice. Obviously that turned out to not be true.

      The houses all contain relatively innocuous students, I believe, that we
      don't hear about. Only the more note-worthy play a part in the story.

      And there's something to be said for having your enemy underneath your nose
      where you can keep an eye on him. And Dumbledore clearly believes in giving
      people multiple chances to redeem themselves and/or prove themselves worthy.
      The sorting hat tells Harry he could go to Slytherin and do well. Probably
      many Slytherins have the potential for great good or great evil. Having
      these kids in the healthier environment of Hogwarts is better -- at least in
      Dumbledore's eyes, I'll bet -- than having them go to a school without such
      scruples.

      To me, asking why Slytherin house remains at Hogwarts is kind of like asking
      why Jesus chose Judas as a disciple, knowing that he would betray him. There
      is still tremendous potential, even after the betrayal. Judas gave up on
      that potential, hanging himself, when he could have been another Peter or
      Paul, remorseful over what he'd done and exhorting others to do better.

      Berni
    • John C. Meyers
      Just saw this in today s NYTimes email (free registration required; link isn t free in about a week): Going at the Changes in, Ya Know, English By EMILY EAKIN
      Message 32 of 32 , Nov 15, 2003
        Just saw this in today's NYTimes email (free registration required; link
        isn't free in about a week):

        Going at the Changes in, Ya Know, English
        By EMILY EAKIN
        In his new book, "Doing Our Own Thing," the linguist and
        cultural critic John McWhorter paints an elaborate picture
        of a culture in linguistic upheaval.

        <http://www.nytimes.com/2003/11/15/arts/15JOHN.html>

        Once again, mythies are ahead of the curve!

        John (lurker since the GEnie days)
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