Monday, 12 November 2007

From He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named to "The Love that dare not speak its name"

Now that JK Rowling has outed Dumbledore, I can't help but speculate on why she did so. After all, unless he had a secret stash of wizardly Viagra somewhere, old Albus seemed to have been well past his days of romance and you-wave-my-wand-and-I'll-wave-yours. Maybe it's to show that the Potter books have a (liberal) moral undertone and will teach kids the importance of tolerance, and not just silly pseudo-Latin phrases. However, that does lead me to ask the question - where's the token black character? There are characters of Indian, Chinese, Eastern European and Elven descent but no blacks as far as I can tell. Is this because:
a) Ms. Rowling wanted to avoid the obvious jokes about 'black magic';
b) Black kids perhaps don't buy books about wizards because they'll be accused of 'acting white'; or
c) Snooty Public Schools in England, even those for wizards, rarely admit blacks?

This does make me wonder though, about whether the media would have gone after JRR Tolkien for a sound-bite, were he alive. After all, Merry and Pippin would have definitely provided fodder for speculation ('Mr. Tolkien, would you say that 'Merry' was not just his name, but also an allusion to his orientation?') and perhaps there would be rumours that Frodo's burden may not just have been the Ring, but his feelings for Sam...

Brokeback Mordor, anyone?

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