Faery Lands Forlorn A.S. Byatt, author of Possession and other novels, looks at the phenomenon of adults reading the Harry Potter children's books: Ms. Rowling's magic world has no place for the numinous. It is written for people whose imaginative lives are confined to TV cartoons, and the exaggerated (more exciting, not threatening) mirror-worlds of soaps, reality TV and celebrity gossip. Its values, and everything in it, are, as Gatsby said of his own world when the light had gone out of his dream, "only personal." Nobody is trying to save or destroy anything beyond Harry Potter and his friends and family.... Ms. Rowling, I think, speaks to an adult generation that hasn't known, and doesn't care about, mystery. They are inhabitants of urban jungles, not of the real wild. They don't have the skills to tell ersatz magic from the real thing, for as children they daily invested the ersatz with what imagination they had.
posted by Artifice_Eternity
on Jul 7, 2003 -
OK, this whole Harry Potter thing - while completely out of proportion to any real value in the books - has up till now been pointless but essentially harmless. But wasting a Hugo Award on this crap?! To quote (oh, I don't know, some Clinton-hating Republican): "Where's the outrage?!"
posted by m.polo
on Sep 5, 2001 -