Monday, July 23, 2007

Harry Potter & de Tocqueville...

[Pointedly contains NO spoilers]

Yes, I'm very proud to be a full on Harry Potter freak, strategically spent from late April to last week rereading books 1-6 and read book 7 over the wk end. This amounts to around 3,500 pages, and considering i've read all books several times, in more than 2 languages, I've probably read 15,000 pages of JKR - but SL beats me by 1, I've only done the midnight launch for books 5-7.

More than interest in the book, the main reason I hurried to read book 7 was to avoid spoilers,
I did everything to ensure it wasn't spoiled for me, like not reading text messages, singing loudly with my ears covered when people started talking about it, and hiding in my car yest for 8 hours to finish it in peace (getting stopped by the police in the process!).

Anyway, my gripe is with the spoilers. I think people who spoil are extremely irresponsible, disrespectful and supercilious. They don't value HP so they don't respect the right of other people to either. I don't understand fishing, golf, war films, animal lovers, but I respect and appreciate that it is possible for other people to be very interested in things that I'm not. I remember years ago seeing something on telly with Seamus Heaney, I think, who was asked why he liked poetry, and he said that poetry, like rasing children, can enrich your life. The parralel stuck with me, because most people would believe that raising children is a lot more enriching than literature, but it gets the point across that all things can enrich a persons life and just because something doesn't appeal to all or isn't seen as significant, doesn't mean it should be disrespected. I think it’s another sign of de Tocquevilles's problem with democracy - the tyranny of majority. The moral or opinion of the majority is seen as sacred, when it often isn't.

I knew that SL wouldn't get a chance to read the book for ages because of the kids & so didn't contact him after I'd finished. I don't have children but I respect the fact that it takes up a lot of time which is part of the morality or humility I'm trying to encourage. Never mind love, piety, respect, I think that by far the most important aspects of human morality should be responsibility and humilty.


  1. I think it's wonderful that it means so much to you, and of course everything is only as relavant as you wnat it to be, for instance my hubby and avoiding the sports news if he's taped a liverpool match! I just read the first five books. five was very disappointing, i actually felt ripped off, so i did read a spoiler, just to see what happens, then when the book was brought into the house by my hubby and son I read the last two chapters. I know you must think that's awful but to read a book like that would take me probably a year...I have hubby, three kids, I haven't read since the youngest was born nearly four months ago, now that's cos I choose to knit, or blog or spend time with hubby in the evening..don't even watch tv anymore, so investing so much time in a book seems madness. I want to start making jewellery, but it's the time factor, something has to give (can't be the kids or hubby or house)(as I've let them all slip recently)! I hope the book satisfied you! and you aren't too sad now the books are finished?

  2. Might be a while before we have that conversation Milan, progress is relatively slow.

    As for de Tocqueville I've said it before people - democracy doesn't work :)

    I heard of a Scottish-based paper that published an article yesterday spoilers and all. I think at least part of people's want to do this is that they don't understand people's engagement with it and so want to break it or mock it at the first opportunity even if it is emotionally important to them.

    Some people never stop being bullies.

  3. I apolgise for the spoilers. They were meant in jest.....head being hung in severe shame

  4. Ach not you Dimbo! The people whe write them, not the bloggers who point to fake ones ;)

  5. Midget, I love all books and 4 was always my favourite but I think 7 is now my new favourite. Enough said.

  6. Milan, I'm so glad it was everything you wanted it to be, and i bet you are reading it again...but slower this time?

  7. yes my plan is to read 7 in the context of having read 7, and then in the medium future to read 1-7 again in the context of having read 7.

    I did all the sites Sun night, didn't find too much.

  8. Weird but for this book I find myself making time for it and even substituting reading it for other things like watching TV, movies, blogging. Wish I had the time to reread books Milan!