I recently created a Feminist Harry Potter tumblr for a final project in my feminist theory course this semester, and it started to reach beyond the confines of my classroom. In less than one week the blog reached about 80,000 page views and 2,000 tumblr followers.
J.K. Rowling has built an empire of books, movies, Website, theme parks, and other merchandise that have resulted in a worldwide cultural phenomenon. While I've always been interested in fusing my two passions together, I was pleasantly surprised to see how many feminist Harry Potter fans there really are. Starting this blog has demonstrated the strong desire from the general public to open up a running dialogue about both the problematic and positive feminist messages in the series.
If you haven't already checked out the Tumblr, below is a short list of reasons why you should consider supporting my feminist theory project and head over to Feminist Harry Potter:
1. The blog brings to light pro-feminist aspects of the series. From Molly Weasley's redefinition of traditional motherhood to Hagrid's embodiment of what it means to be an authentic male caretaker, there are some hidden feminist gems in Harry Potter's adventures that deserve attention.
2. It simultaneously offers up a critical analysis of this cultural phenomenon. The fact that there are very few people of color who represent major characters in the story and the only female journalist mentioned is portrayed as gossiping and manipulative are only two of many problematic components of Harry Potter worthy of analysis and discussion.
3. Harry becomes the feminist hero he always had the potential to be.
4. It forces fans to think differently about the series in a way they never have before.
5. Consciousness raising about intersectional feminism becomes unavoidable because different theories and concepts are creatively explained on images of everyone's favorite fictional characters.
6. Who doesn't love a good laugh? Being funny isn't necessarily my forte, but a fair amount of posts are thought to be witty and amusing. Humor and satire are effective in gaining readers' attention to address more serious issues.
7. You can't find bell hooks, Gloria Anzaldua, and Hermione Granger all in one place anywhere else.