Harry Potter, and the future activists or redecorators?
I am going to do something , which I expected never to do; to comment on a series of books I have not read!
For in fact the only single sentence I have actually read of the Harry Potter series, is the last one which appeared online shortly before the release deadline: “All was well”.
And yet this line has moved me to like the set of books a little better and hope that their now still young readers, will one day be needless of such books of fantastic adventure and yet move on to expect more of their lives.
Only some weeks ago, a commentary made me aware of the popular appeal of such a genre. The need to find new versions of the fight between ‘good’ and ‘evil’ to find new definitions of social responsibility and uniting together to fight ‘the darkness’ and also to seek a model of a life beyond the banal as well as to seek values; the kind of values we hoped children were picking up in families, schools, social networks etc., but obviously are not.
The fact that so many readers in the “western democracies”, young and old, turned to Harry Potter to find something beyond adventure, is an indication in itself of the times we live in. Times of detachment, and the failing of feeling connected or truly passionate about the essence of an active life.
Yet has this series of novels, perhaps , instilled in its readers a yearning for something beyond the everyday?
Can you imagine the readers of the series which ends with the said words noting that the struggle , fear, courage, fighting and adventure were all good, and turned out well , becoming the avid the constant redecorators of homes and followers of the saga of the likes of Paris Hilton, which we so often find today, or the kind of intellectuals who measure their worth by the high prices they pay for Bio products and the many thousands of books that they have on display about them even as they go about struggling miserably through life and showing none of the wisdom that at least some of these books plead for?!
Was all this reading ‘well’ after all, and will it bring about a different generation, armed with a new sense of purpose and a new set of values, more unafraid to take on the challenge of life and use and form its conflicts, rather than to run or hide from them? Is it possible to read so much about such battles and with such fervour and remain untouched by them?
I hope not. I hope that all was well, and will be better.
So long Harry Potter. Or to speak in the kind of language that you probably understand better : “May the goddess of light, love and wisdom be with you – and your young readers – for the rest of the journey of life. May she light up all our lives a little more, as you grow up, get to vote and to seek to make wise choices in and about life, love, politics, presidents and peace.”