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Re: Harry VI

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  • Pauline J. Alama
    I think one of the reasons that stories about teenagers are popular - - whether the teenagers are named Harry Potter, Buffy Summers, Wart/Arthur, Theseus, or
    Message 1 of 30 , Oct 13, 2005
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      I think one of the reasons that stories about teenagers are popular -
      - whether the teenagers are named Harry Potter, Buffy Summers,
      Wart/Arthur, Theseus, or Perceval le Galois -- is that
      adolescence/coming of age/whateveryouwwannacallit is an important
      time in most people's lives, a time when we became the people we
      are, and made some of the choices that have formed the rest of our
      lives. Rather than dismissing HP because it's "teen lit" one might
      more fairly say that part of its compelling appeal for many,
      including many adults, is because of its honesty in portraying the
      struggles and follies of adolescence. I know that in reading HP 5 I
      kept saying, with a rueful groan, "Oh, yes--I remember being 15." A
      couple of friends who are teachers found that book a bit of a
      busman's holiday, becuase Harry seemed too much like their students.
      Why make a weakness out of one of the series' strenghts? I admire
      the candor and perceptiveness with which Rowling captures the
      nuances of adolescents' mood swings, foibles, and triumphs. And she
      never cheats. She never gives Harry insights inconsistent with his
      level of maturity. She never steps out of POV in the Harry-POV
      chapters to deliver Authorial Wisdom (except indirectly through a
      more mature character's dialog). I think point of view is very
      important in fiction, and Rowling's skill at this technique is not
      often enough praised.

      Pauline J. Alama
      THE EYE OF NIGHT

      --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, Mike Foster <mafoster@d...> wrote:
      >
      > I second Ms. Monk's motion.
      >
      > Rowling has a nominative (name-giving) gift that exceeds Lewis'
      and
      > perhaps is second only to Tolkien.
      >
      > Rank rash dismissal of her reminds me of remark made to me by a
      retired
      > ICC earth science prof at an ol' bleeps' breakfast last week:
      > "When you started teaching that Tolkien class [in 1978], there
      were a
      > lot of people who were skeptical."
      >
      > Yeah, well, coprolites to you, chum. Tolkien is literature of the
      > finest. Rowling may be nowhere near that level, but she should
      not be
      > sneered away to the toy department, Wendell.
      >
      > As Pogo the possum used to say:
      > "Rowrbazzle!"
      >
      > Cheers,
      > Mike
      >
      > Walkermonk@a... wrote:
      >
      > >In a message dated 7/22/2005 9:48:29 AM Central Daylight Time,
      > >WendellWag@a... writes:
      > >The Harry Potter
      > >books are still a teenage-angst series with magic names slapped
      on
      > >everything.
      > >This is incorrect. The stories are about the struggle between
      good and evil,
      > >and how difficult it is to sometimes recognize good and the
      sacrifices
      > >required for doing what is right. The ratio of magic names is
      quite low compared to
      > >just regular names. And teenage angst? When did angst become the
      sole province
      > >of teenagers and why is there contempt for teenage feelings? The
      situations
      > >being confronted by the teenagers in the HP books aren't for the
      faint of heart
      > >or the immature of character. Do the teenagers handle the
      situations
      > >differently than the adults portrayed? Yes. The teens aren't
      always correct either. But
      > >they matter, and I don't see anything wrong in that. The HP books
      aren't my
      > >favorite and I think they have some flaws. But Wendell's
      contemptuous one-line
      > >dismissal is far below what the books deserve.
      > >
      > >
      > >Incidentally, I read a news story about Rowling recently in which
      she said
      > >that she never read (or, more precisely, she never finished)
      either _The Lord
      > >of the Rings_ or _The Chronicles of Narnia_.
      > >Well, according to this particular article (which immediately
      loses points
      > >with me by mentioning Rowling's haircolor), Rowling must have at
      least read "The
      > >Last Battle." So if she hasn't finished Narnia, then I wonder
      which one(s)
      > >she left out. This is at odds, btw, with many other interviews
      and other
      > >statements about Lewis.
      > >
      > >Grace Monk
      > >
      > >
      > >[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
      > >Yahoo! Groups Links
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      >
    • Pauline J. Alama
      I wouldn t say Rowling s folklore was off (by which I suppose you mean inaccurate ), but that she has decided to do different things with the folklore. As
      Message 2 of 30 , Oct 13, 2005
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        I wouldn't say Rowling's folklore was "off" (by which I suppose you
        mean "inaccurate"), but that she has decided to do different things
        with the folklore.

        As Pete Seeger said of folk music, that's what makes it folk --
        everyone sings it in their own way.

        Pauline J. Alama
        THE EYE OF NIGHT

        --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, "Lezlie" <lezlie1@z...> wrote:
        >
        > Hi all- (a bit of a ramble...)
        > I like Rowling OK-- don't get me wrong. I just wish she'd stop
        saying
        > dumb things about *Witches* . As a teacher & parent, the endless
        > conversations about "pretend witches" gets a bit wearing after a
        > while... it isn't as if there isn't piles of readily available
        > information these days. In 2005, there is little excuse to "not
        know"
        > any longer. Yeah-- the truth is very boring and fiction is ever so
        > much more *fun* ...<sniff>... and all of *that*. (I am a *fantasy*
        fan
        > after all.)
        > Some of her folklore is a bit off, too...especially involving
        elfish
        > critters. Of course, her knowledge of the occult in general is
        compete
        > claptrap, but it's fine for fiction, I suppose. Her world-building
        > skill is improving, however. Well, I could say all of that about a
        > *lot* of writers about a *lot* of things.
        > Rowling tells a good tale. Mostly. But, I haven't gone out and read
        > the last. I've been reading other people I like a lot better.
        Personal
        > taste, you know...
        >
        > Not really impressed with the name-thing... not really... a bit too
        > Dickensonian, IMHO. A little *obvious* in this post modernist era
        (for
        > a novel set in modern times with magical twists and turns that
        is).
        >
        > Now, Charles de Lint, in comparison, has his folklore right spot
        on,
        > spins magical yarns – if a bit awkward at times – . He shows that
        he
        > has done his research – no question—.
        > On the other hand, Rowling is incredibly successful; I have to hand
        > her that. And, the kids love her. Mostly harmless (as the cliche
        has
        > become) I guess. Lezlie
        >
        >
        >
        > --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, Mike Foster <mafoster@d...> wrote:
        > > I second Ms. Monk's motion.
        > >
        > > Rowling has a nominative (name-giving) gift that exceeds Lewis'
        and
        > > perhaps is second only to Tolkien.
        > >
        > > Rank rash dismissal of her reminds me of remark made to me by a
        retired
        > > ICC earth science prof at an ol' bleeps' breakfast last week:
        > > "When you started teaching that Tolkien class [in 1978], there
        were a
        > > lot of people who were skeptical."
        > >
        > > Yeah, well, coprolites to you, chum. Tolkien is literature of
        the
        > > finest. Rowling may be nowhere near that level, but she should
        not be
        > > sneered away to the toy department, Wendell.
        > >
        > > As Pogo the possum used to say:
        > > "Rowrbazzle!"
        > >
        > > Cheers,
        > > Mike
        > >
        > > Walkermonk@a... wrote:
        > >
        > > >In a message dated 7/22/2005 9:48:29 AM Central Daylight Time,
        > > >WendellWag@a... writes:
        > > >The Harry Potter
        > > >books are still a teenage-angst series with magic names
        slapped on
        > > >everything.
        > > >This is incorrect. The stories are about the struggle between
        good
        > and evil,
        > > >and how difficult it is to sometimes recognize good and the
        sacrifices
        > > >required for doing what is right. The ratio of magic names is
        quite
        > low compared to
        > > >just regular names. And teenage angst? When did angst become the
        > sole province
        > > >of teenagers and why is there contempt for teenage feelings? The
        > situations
        > > >being confronted by the teenagers in the HP books aren't for the
        > faint of heart
        > > >or the immature of character. Do the teenagers handle the
        situations
        > > >differently than the adults portrayed? Yes. The teens aren't
        always
        > correct either. But
        > > >they matter, and I don't see anything wrong in that. The HP
        books
        > aren't my
        > > >favorite and I think they have some flaws. But Wendell's
        > contemptuous one-line
        > > >dismissal is far below what the books deserve.
        > > >
        > > >
        > > >Incidentally, I read a news story about Rowling recently in
        which
        > she said
        > > >that she never read (or, more precisely, she never finished)
        either
        > _The Lord
        > > >of the Rings_ or _The Chronicles of Narnia_.
        > > >Well, according to this particular article (which immediately
        loses
        > points
        > > >with me by mentioning Rowling's haircolor), Rowling must have at
        > least read "The
        > > >Last Battle." So if she hasn't finished Narnia, then I wonder
        which
        > one(s)
        > > >she left out. This is at odds, btw, with many other interviews
        and
        > other
        > > >statements about Lewis.
        > > >
        > > >Grace Monk
        > > >
        > > >
        > > >[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        > > >
        > > >
        > > >
        > > >The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
        > > >Yahoo! Groups Links
        > > >
        > > >
        > > >
        > > >
        > > >
        > > >
        > > >
        > > >
        > > >
        > > >
        >
      • Lezlie
        All I can say is this: I don t like Pete Seeger s expurgated renditions of old folk songs, either. His orgiinals are fine, very sing-alongable -- So, there
        Message 3 of 30 , Oct 13, 2005
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          All I can say is this: I don't like Pete Seeger's expurgated
          renditions of old folk songs, either. His orgiinals are fine, very
          sing-alongable -- So, there you have it. Matter of personal taste, I
          *suppose*.

          There are Other authors I like better, even for youth, but Rowling
          serves a very important purpose in the literacy battle. And, that
          battle, we cannot afford to loose. More HP, I say! Bring them on!

          Lezlie

          --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, "Pauline J. Alama" <PJAlama@e...> wrote:
          >
          > I wouldn't say Rowling's folklore was "off" (by which I suppose you
          > mean "inaccurate"), but that she has decided to do different things
          > with the folklore.
          >
          > As Pete Seeger said of folk music, that's what makes it folk --
          > everyone sings it in their own way.
          >
          > Pauline J. Alama
          > THE EYE OF NIGHT
          >
          > --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, "Lezlie" <lezlie1@z...> wrote:
          > >
          > > Hi all- (a bit of a ramble...)
          > > I like Rowling OK-- don't get me wrong. I just wish she'd stop
          > saying
          > > dumb things about *Witches* . As a teacher & parent, the endless
          > > conversations about "pretend witches" gets a bit wearing after a
          > > while... it isn't as if there isn't piles of readily available
          > > information these days. In 2005, there is little excuse to "not
          > know"
          > > any longer. Yeah-- the truth is very boring and fiction is ever so
          > > much more *fun* ...<sniff>... and all of *that*. (I am a *fantasy*
          > fan
          > > after all.)
          > > Some of her folklore is a bit off, too...especially involving
          > elfish
          > > critters. Of course, her knowledge of the occult in general is
          > compete
          > > claptrap, but it's fine for fiction, I suppose. Her world-building
          > > skill is improving, however. Well, I could say all of that about a
          > > *lot* of writers about a *lot* of things.
          > > Rowling tells a good tale. Mostly. But, I haven't gone out and read
          > > the last. I've been reading other people I like a lot better.
          > Personal
          > > taste, you know...
          > >
          > > Not really impressed with the name-thing... not really... a bit too
          > > Dickensonian, IMHO. A little *obvious* in this post modernist era
          > (for
          > > a novel set in modern times with magical twists and turns that
          > is).
          > >
          > > Now, Charles de Lint, in comparison, has his folklore right spot
          > on,
          > > spins magical yarns – if a bit awkward at times – . He shows that
          > he
          > > has done his research – no question—.
          > > On the other hand, Rowling is incredibly successful; I have to hand
          > > her that. And, the kids love her. Mostly harmless (as the cliche
          > has
          > > become) I guess. Lezlie
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > > --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, Mike Foster <mafoster@d...> wrote:
          > > > I second Ms. Monk's motion.
          > > >
          > > > Rowling has a nominative (name-giving) gift that exceeds Lewis'
          > and
          > > > perhaps is second only to Tolkien.
          > > >
          > > > Rank rash dismissal of her reminds me of remark made to me by a
          > retired
          > > > ICC earth science prof at an ol' bleeps' breakfast last week:
          > > > "When you started teaching that Tolkien class [in 1978], there
          > were a
          > > > lot of people who were skeptical."
          > > >
          > > > Yeah, well, coprolites to you, chum. Tolkien is literature of
          > the
          > > > finest. Rowling may be nowhere near that level, but she should
          > not be
          > > > sneered away to the toy department, Wendell.
          > > >
          > > > As Pogo the possum used to say:
          > > > "Rowrbazzle!"
          > > >
          > > > Cheers,
          > > > Mike
          > > >
          > > > Walkermonk@a... wrote:
          > > >
          > > > >In a message dated 7/22/2005 9:48:29 AM Central Daylight Time,
          > > > >WendellWag@a... writes:
          > > > >The Harry Potter
          > > > >books are still a teenage-angst series with magic names
          > slapped on
          > > > >everything.
          > > > >This is incorrect. The stories are about the struggle between
          > good
          > > and evil,
          > > > >and how difficult it is to sometimes recognize good and the
          > sacrifices
          > > > >required for doing what is right. The ratio of magic names is
          > quite
          > > low compared to
          > > > >just regular names. And teenage angst? When did angst become the
          > > sole province
          > > > >of teenagers and why is there contempt for teenage feelings? The
          > > situations
          > > > >being confronted by the teenagers in the HP books aren't for the
          > > faint of heart
          > > > >or the immature of character. Do the teenagers handle the
          > situations
          > > > >differently than the adults portrayed? Yes. The teens aren't
          > always
          > > correct either. But
          > > > >they matter, and I don't see anything wrong in that. The HP
          > books
          > > aren't my
          > > > >favorite and I think they have some flaws. But Wendell's
          > > contemptuous one-line
          > > > >dismissal is far below what the books deserve.
          > > > >
          > > > >
          > > > >Incidentally, I read a news story about Rowling recently in
          > which
          > > she said
          > > > >that she never read (or, more precisely, she never finished)
          > either
          > > _The Lord
          > > > >of the Rings_ or _The Chronicles of Narnia_.
          > > > >Well, according to this particular article (which immediately
          > loses
          > > points
          > > > >with me by mentioning Rowling's haircolor), Rowling must have at
          > > least read "The
          > > > >Last Battle." So if she hasn't finished Narnia, then I wonder
          > which
          > > one(s)
          > > > >she left out. This is at odds, btw, with many other interviews
          > and
          > > other
          > > > >statements about Lewis.
          > > > >
          > > > >Grace Monk
          > > > >
          > > > >
          > > > >[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          > > > >
          > > > >
          > > > >
          > > > >The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
          > > > >Yahoo! Groups Links
          > > > >
          > > > >
          > > > >
          > > > >
          > > > >
          > > > >
          > > > >
          > > > >
          > > > >
          > > > >
          > >
          >
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