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Re: [mythsoc] Yet another HP article

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  • David S. Bratman
    ... Unfortunately it doesn t hold up to that arresting beginning. First off, he appears to believe that Tolkien s model of sub-creation requires an obviously
    Message 1 of 2 , Mar 29, 2001
      At 12:10 PM 3/29/2001 , Matt Winslow wrote:

      >For the few who have not become tired of articles discussing Harry
      >Potter, here's one that starts out well:

      Unfortunately it doesn't hold up to that arresting beginning.

      First off, he appears to believe that Tolkien's model of sub-creation
      requires an obviously "separate mythical world apart from our reality",
      which Harry Potter's world is not, therefore it is not only inappropriate
      to compare it to LOTR, he says that it's somehow deficient thereby ("the
      nub of what's the matter with Harry"). Which amounts to criticizing the
      Potter series for not being something it's not trying to be.

      And if a sub-creation has to be a separate world, so much for the
      sub-creational excellences of Charles Williams and a whole raft of
      contemporary fantasists, then (including half the work of this year's
      Mythcon GoH, Peter Beagle). And most fairy-stories, which feature everyday
      people and settings of the times and places they were written.

      He also states that LOTR "takes place in a world called Middle-Earth," as
      if it were a different planet. It is not. It's essential to the success
      of Tolkien's sub-creation that Middle-earth (small "e", if you're going to
      present yourself as a Tolkien expert) be perceived as the mythical past of
      _our_ world.

      Second, while he is excellent in observing the moral basis behind Tolkien's
      writing, he is blind to that behind Rowling's and even scorns what he does
      see. True, Rowling isn't in Tolkien's league in a sense of sorrowfulness
      and loss (but why should she evoke identical emotions to Tolkien's? She's
      writing a different story), but to the final question - would Harry and his
      pals sacrifice anything for conscience and duty? - I think they not only
      would, they already have.

      Thirdly, he keeps calling LOTR a trilogy. Not very important, but it does
      show one matter where he doesn't know what he's talking about.

      David Bratman
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