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Harry Potter Essay Sample, Example

If you research the question about which books were the most significant for the generation born in early 1990s, the answer would probably be predictable: the “Harry Potter” series and “The Lord of the Rings.” Of course, there were other popular franchises, such as “Dune” by Frank Herbert, or “The Wheel of Time” by Robert Jordan, but they did not have the significance in the minds of teenagers in the 1990s. And probably, it was Harry Potter who managed to become more commercially successful and loved by a wider audience—“The Lord of the Rings” was sometimes too epic and too dark to become popular among children.

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Another reason why the Harry Potter franchise became so significant was probably because Harry was the same age as J.K. Rowling’s main audience: children. The young sorcerer was only 11 years old when he first arrived at Hogwarts, and so were the boys and girls who followed his adventures. This provided the author with a unique opportunity to make her character become mature together with the audience—so whatever happened to Harry and his friends, it remained realistic and important for fans.

Despite all this, the Harry Potter franchise can boast of other advantages as well. An interesting story is one of them. It all starts in a rather trivial way though—with a boy being branded as the “unique one,” a survivor of a terrible assault with a destiny to defeat an evil overlord. However, this is the basic layer of the story. Getting older, developing relationships, studying: Rowling describes all these events, important in the life of any teenager, in an exciting setting full of magic and wonders—and manages to do so like no other. Magic in her books is something daily, habitual—and it makes it even more wonderful.

Rowling created vivid characters; however, not all of them revealed their potential from the very beginning. Surprisingly, the one who truly took his time before finally showing his personality was Harry. Whereas Ron, Hermione, Draco, Snape, and other characters possessed vivid and readable personalities from the very beginning, for a long time, Harry remains some kind of an “event-trigger,” whose main goal is to move the story forward. Either something happens to Harry, or he does something on his own—and this allows the author to move one step further. It does not mean Harry’s character is badly researched—it is rather that Harry has nothing remarkable about his personality. The situation changes for the better, however, in the third book and further on, which impress with well-developed, realistic characters.

What is confusing sometimes is the motivation of a number of characters. Voldemort is evil because he is evil; Dumbledore sacrifices himself because he is wise; Snape dislikes Harry because Harry’s was unfair to him; Draco acts like a bully and idiot because he is from Slytherin (actually, this is fair for all other Slytherin students); Dolores Umbridge, while definitely being one of the most-hated characters, also seems to have no clear motive to torture students, and so on. On the other hand, Harry and his friends develop their motivation while maturing, learn to take responsibility, and accept their duty.

Other than this, there are no significant drawbacks in the series. The writing style of Rowling fits the described events perfectly—relatively carefree and fairy-tale like in the first books, it becomes more dramatic with each following novel, creating the atmosphere and fully conveying the drama. The storyline remains intense and vivid throughout all seven books, and this is probably the author’s most important accomplishment (along with creating a whole cult of fans)—not every author manages to find and maintain balance between commerce and quality.

The “Harry Potter” series is definitely one of the most important breakthroughs in the literature of the 21st century; it will probably outlive its creator, and become a favorite book for the following generations of young readers.

Points to consider

How does Harry Potter reflect societal values?

The Harry Potter series reflects societal values in several ways. Firstly, it emphasizes the importance of friendship, loyalty, and love as powerful forces that can triumph over evil. Characters like Harry, Ron, and Hermione develop strong bonds that help them overcome various challenges throughout the series. Additionally, the books address themes of discrimination, prejudice, and the abuse of power, highlighting the importance of equality, tolerance, and social justice. The series also promotes the value of courage, resilience, and standing up against injustice, as seen through the actions of various characters.

What is the significance of Harry Potter in contemporary literature?

The Harry Potter series has made a significant impact on contemporary literature, particularly in the realm of young adult fiction. Its immense popularity has contributed to the rise of the fantasy genre and has inspired a new generation of readers and writers. The series has also been credited with reviving the interest in reading among children and teenagers, with its engaging storytelling and relatable characters. Furthermore, Harry Potter has transcended the boundaries of literature, becoming a cultural phenomenon that has spawned movies, theme parks, merchandise, and fan-created content.

Why is Harry Potter a beloved character among readers?

Harry Potter is a beloved character for several reasons. As an orphan who discovers a hidden magical world, he embodies the classic “hero’s journey” archetype, which resonates with many readers. His relatable struggles with identity, self-doubt, and personal growth make him an accessible and endearing protagonist. Additionally, Harry’s unwavering loyalty, bravery, and determination in the face of adversity inspire admiration and empathy. Moreover, his strong moral compass and commitment to doing what is right, despite the challenges and personal sacrifices, make him a role model for readers of all ages.

What makes J.K. Rowling’s writing style unique in the Harry Potter series?

J.K. Rowling’s writing style in the Harry Potter series is characterized by several unique elements. Her vivid and imaginative world-building, combined with intricate plotting and attention to detail, creates an immersive and captivating reading experience. Rowling’s ability to weave humor, suspense, and emotional depth into her storytelling keeps readers engaged and invested in the characters’ journeys. Additionally, her accessible and straightforward prose makes the series appealing to a wide audience, while her clever use of foreshadowing and symbolism adds depth and complexity for more experienced readers.

How do the themes of Harry Potter resonate with readers of all ages?

The themes of the Harry Potter series resonate with readers of all ages because they address universal human experiences and emotions. Themes such as friendship, love, courage, and self-discovery are relatable to people at any stage of life. The series also explores complex issues like prejudice, discrimination, and the abuse of power, which are relevant and thought-provoking for readers of all ages. Furthermore, the books’ blend of fantasy, adventure, and coming-of-age elements allows readers to escape into a magical world while still engaging with meaningful and timeless themes.

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Candy September 18, 2023

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