Harry Potter Controversy

analytical Essay
988 words
988 words

Religious Controversies in Rowling’s Harry Potter

Ever since J.K. Rowling first introduced Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone in 1997, children and adults have read and loved the series. It has gained such popularity that all of the books have been made into major motion pictures, and a Harry Potter attraction has been opened in Universal Studios, Florida. Though the readers love Rowling’s intricate and exciting story lines, many controversies have arisen from these stories, not only in the United States, but also in various countries around the world. Perhaps the biggest controversy is the religious implications perceived by some critics. Although these critics believe that the series promotes paganism and encourages evil actions, these theories should not be taken so seriously.

The first main controversy of the Harry Potter series is the argument that Rowling’s stories promote paganism, which is against Christian beliefs. The Bible specifically states in Leviticus 20:26, “You shall not practice augury or witchcraft” (“Reading Matters”). Furthermore, the Bible supports the resentment towards paganism in Deuteronomy 18:10-12, stating that those found practicing witchcraft, casting spells, or contacting spirits are a disgrace to the Lord and will be driven out (qtd. in Mahoney). In Rowling’s book, witchcraft is an alluring practice. For instance, Hogwarts is described as a magical place one might wish to visit if the school existed. Consequently, many parents fear children who read these books will become intrigued by wizardry and attempt to learn these practices (Wilder Gish). Even J. K. Rowling has admitted that some readers are so convinced by the books that they believe the wizard world is real. These readers have sent...

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...ave evolved about the subject matter of these books. The greatest controversy, though, centers on the series’ religious references, which have caused many parents to despise the “immoral” concepts of the stories and forbid their children from reading these books. Such people feel that Rowling promotes paganism through the magic performed by the characters, and promotes evil through various connections to Satan. Still, Harry Potter does not reflect the practices of Wicca and good always overpowers evil in the end; therefore, we should not be concerned with the effects of the series on children, or even adults. After all, readers have been enjoying stories containing magical references for centuries and humanity has not suffered because of it. Harry Potter is just another magical story and should be enjoyed, rather than judged because of its controversial references.

In this essay, the author

  • Analyzes the religious implications of j.k. rowling's harry potter and the sorcerer’s stone.
  • Analyzes how the bible supports the resentment towards paganism in deuteronomy 18:10-12, stating that those practicing witchcraft are a disgrace to the lord and will be driven out.
  • Explains that while many religious people denounce harry potter as pagan, there are many who disagree with claims that the series promotes paganism.
  • Analyzes how the argument that rowling's harry potter series promotes evil is the second main controversy. lord voldemort possesses the same characteristics as satan.
  • Analyzes how the opposition argues that good triumphs over evil throughout the series, which is why most readers choose to side with harry and dumbledore.
  • Explains that mahoney believes that it is the parents’ responsibility to talk about religion with their children. the magic in harry potter is extremely different from the magic of wicca, the practice of witchcraft.
  • Opines that harry potter is just another magical story and should be enjoyed, rather than judged because of its controversial references.
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