The Hero’s Hero

Sam, In celebration of Hermione Jean Granger’s birthday, this year I’d like to recount some moments she progressed the plot or contributed to the reason of Harry and Ron survived their first year at Hogwarts. The time they went to meet Draco for their midnight duel in Philosopher’s Stone: “‘This is it!’ Ron moaned, as…

The Importance of Communion

Sam, To commemorate Eid al-Adha (Feast of the Sacrifice) in a few days, I’d like to talk about acts of communion in human culture and literature. Communion is so often solely associated with religious rituals such as the Eucharist or Passover in addition to Eid al-Adha. In actuality, we participate in communion on a daily basis: dinner dates, eating…

Apotheosis at the Lake

Sam, I’d like to speak about the moment Harry is at his best, when he conjures a corporeal Patronus at the lake in Prisoner of Azkaban (Read here for the moment when he earns his place in Gryffindor house.) Apotheosis is the point a character reaches a state of divinity (mostly in mythology) or their highest point in…

“Not Slytherin, not Slytherin”

            Sam, Just last week, readers in the UK (and outside it) celebrated the twentieth anniversary of the publication of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. In the spirit of Chamber leaving its teenage years behind, I’d like to examine a question that started in Philosopher’s Stone and was answered in Chamber. It deals…

A Brave Face

Sam, There’s a question that doesn’t seem to have a good answer among Potter fans. Despite our best efforts and much back and forth, we continue to ask how the hell was Peter Pettigrew a Gryffindor? For anyone who thinks the Hogwarts house traits are cut and dry, you may need to get a Pottermore account….