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Professor Snape Harry Potter J.K. Rowling

Professor Snape Harry Potter J.K. Rowling

How appropriately Thanksgiving themed! After a fan asked J.K. Rowling why Harry named one of his kids “Severus” after the broody Potions Master who gave the boy wizard such hell, Rowling tweeted back a thoughtful explanation, that in effect Harry was thankful for Snape.

Snape is notoriously grey area. Not only did he constantly set Harry up to fail in Potions class, he (SPOILER ALERT SPOILER ALERT SPOILER ALERT–but seriously, if this spoils it for you, bad on you for not picking up those books and reading them, like, yesterday) killed Albus Dumbledore. The Albus Dumbledore. How could Harry name his kid after a guy like that?

Well, as those of us who have read the books and watched the movies know, Snape was acting on Dumbledore’s orders. Despite Snape’s less honorable Death Eater past, he was protecting Harry the whole darn-tootin-ole time. Per J.K. Rowling‘s tweets, Harry and Snape actually have some things in common. Snape’s attitude towards Harry at Hogwarts may have been about a lingering flame for Harry’s mother and jealousy of his father. But they were also about confronting his guilt for his past actions.

Harry named his kid “Severus” for similar reasons. Voldemort wanted Harry dead, and so many people had to die or have loved ones die because of it. Snape turned out to be one of those people. Sure, there are tons of people who Harry could have chosen to honor, but Snape was someone he had a fraught relationship with. While Snape was a bully to Harry, Harry also had Snape pegged all wrong. The man was lonely, and tortured, loved Harry’s mother, and died for a boy he didn’t even like. Snape may have bullied Harry, but Harry bullied Snape back.

Even so, the Twitter conversation about the “Severus” naming rages on. What do you think? Should Harry not have chosen to honor Professor Snape’s memory? Or was it a good decision?

 

(via AP)

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Nandita Seshadri

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