Also, JKR should not give out tidbits of her character's lives in interviews about her exceedingly popular book series.
But the point is that Harper Lee admits she is like Boo Radley, the observer, the person who is standing in the corner watching. And as a writer, when the book was over, she left it all there on Boo Radley's front porch. For the readers, for all of us, to figure out alone.
That is so different from J.K. Rowling who talked while she was writing, then talked in between books, then talked more when the movies came out, and on and on. Most of all, when the series was over and most of our questions were answered, she jumped onstage and began to tell us what he had just read, or tell us that our perceptions were wrong, or there was something wrong with us as readers because only she as the author had the answers. And that freaked out a lot of people, including me.
So, JKR is basically this huge attention whore, right? She keeps saying things about her characters and proving to people who misread that they did in fact misread! Oh, the humanity! Why can't she be more like Harper Lee, who wrote a classic book and then said very little about it, so that people can be free to misread all they like?
However, it's hard to imagine JKR writing Mockingbird and then saying she identified with anyone except Scout or Atticus. After all, in her own books she insists that her kinship is to Ginny, Hermione, Lupin, Harry, Lily and Dumbledore (all Gryffindors) rather than Snape, who is the watcher and observer - and guardian of children in our story. It's amusing to me because you can make a case that Snape is very similar to the widower Atticus Finch, even down to his Latin first name name. Interestingly she also used the name "Finch" for another character attacked by a snake in Chamber of Secrets - Justin Finch-Fletchly, a Muggleborn like Harry's mother Lily. And Justin (~justice?~) misjudges Harry on the basis of the ability to speak Parseltongue, just as Harry judges Snape too harshly for being Head of Slytherin and an ex-Death Eater.
Snape is a GUARDIAN OF CHILDREN! He's just like Atticus as well as Boo Radly, standing firm and outspoken against a bigoted society! Also, obligatory 'wah the Gryffindors' complaint. And misjudging someone for an ability they didn't even know that they had is slightly different from judging someone for joining a racist hate-crime group. But maybe that's just me.
In this case, Boo is the "sinister monster" with whom Harper Lee identifies. Just as Snape is the character in Harry Potter with whom so many of us identify, even though that is an unpopular thought, even with JKR.
Boo Radly is a man who is genuinely kind, and whose bad reputation is unearned and undeserved. Severus Snape is neither of those things. I'd say that the wizarding world's equivalent of Boo Radley would be either Remus Lupin or Sirius Black.
Note: this came out about five days after the 'Snape's Muggleness' article. Guess she's still butthurt about Snape losing in the Mugglenet March Madness vote.
Not in coo-coo conspiracy theories, no, but there's definitely more bile and rage in defense of one's "personal canon." I've even encountered someone who thinks that the original cut of the Star Wars Original Trilogy (that is, the version actually shown in theaters in the '70s and '80s) is on the same level as LE MORT d'ARTHUR.
There are other fandoms I think might be crazier than HP, too. "Invader Zim" and "Sonic the Hegdehog" are known for seriously creepy porn and Mary Sues that would make Rose Potter and Grangerverse Hermione blush (okay, maybe not Grangerverse Hermione), while rabid "Avatar the Last Airbender" fans have created, amongst other things, a THREE HOUR DOCUMENTARY about all the alleged subliminal messages in the series that prove an obviously non-canon pairing is actually canon!
Jeez. I didn't know that about ATLA. My fandom, why so weird? \(;_;)/
As for Star Wars? Yeah, I really don't wanna navigate the murky waters of that whole thing. It doesn't help that Lucas has been screwing around remastering this and that to make the whole series more consistent with what he believes it should look like.
Me? I watched bits and pieces in the 1980s, but never really saw the whole 4/5/6 arc in its entirety nor did I even want to watch 1/2/3, Hayden Christensen notwithstanding.
4/5/6 -- the original, not the bullshit Lucas has done to them since -- were movies I grew up watching over and over again. Princess Leia did stuff. She was a central character and she wasn't dressed in revealing and/or skin-tight clothing except by a villain, whom she strangled to death. When I watched the movies again recently, I noticed that she was the best shot among the three main human characters.
I don't know what you're talking about with 1/2/3. I only know of the existence of 4/5/6. No prequels exist. And I'm sure if Lucas made prequels, they wouldn't be about how love is evil and corrupting, and I'm sure he wouldn't let special effects take precedence over characters.
I enjoyed the prequels, myself, and I wonder what problems people have with the Special Editions. Really, what's wrong with them? That they insert CGI? That's not grounds to call something "bullshit," I don't think.
rabid "Avatar the Last Airbender" fans have created, amongst other things, a THREE HOUR DOCUMENTARY about all the alleged subliminal messages in the series that prove an obviously non-canon pairing is actually canon!
Also, anyone else a little creeped out by the implication that it's somehow wrong to identify with Atticus and Scout because they're "Gryffindor-like" (even though Atticus is definitely more Ravenclaw or Hufflepuff)? Not as creepy as the whole "Emmett Till deserved it because he was popular" thing, but still.
Yup. The whole thing with 'her kinship is to Ginny, Hermione, Lupin, Harry, Lily and Dumbledore (all Gryffindors) rather than Snape' gets me because she seems to be saying that it's somehow wrong to identify with these characters and their struggles, that the author choosing to feel 'kinship' for those characters 'rather than Snape' is some sort of personal disservice or moral failing on JKR's part.
To them it is, because as far as they are concerned anyone sorted into Gryffindor is always "Chaotic Evil" no mater what they do, or what their motivations are.
Snape, Petunia, and the poor woobie slytherins are the unfortunate victims of the horrible Gryffindor regime, rattlesnakeroot, and her ilk are the only super special smartest ones who see the truth! The pyramids were built by ALIENS!Snape was the real hero, and only moral character!
I know, right? It isn't a case of 'It's amusing to me because you can make a case that Snape is very similar to the widower Atticus Finch' so much as 'It's amusing to me because she thinks she can make a case that Snape is very similar to the widower Atticus Finch'. The Latinesque first name is about the only valid similarity.
Isn't that when they claimed Lupin was a pedophile? Which, considering Lupin and Snape were the same age and both teenagers, reveals that they don't only misunderstand books, they also don't understand actual real-world stuff.
That's part of why marionros creeps me out so much. She really is like Snape, thinking that she can do or say whatever she wants and then acts like she's the victim for getting called on it. And she does it ALL THE FUCKING TIME. Worse, she also has a habit of using weasel-words to try to make out as though whoever called her out is the offensive one. That says a lot about her, and none of it good. It isn't just that malice, entitlement and resentment ooze out of her every post, it's that everything always has to be somebody else's fault. It's all due to misunderstandings stemming from everyone else's bigotries, psychological issues, and misinterpretations of the world around them. But not hers, no, never hers - we're just CHOOSING to 'get on our high toy horses' over her brilliant, insightful, accurate and inoffensive analogies!
Rattlesnakeroot reads Harry Potter better than everyone else:
J. K. Rowling, who has been so outspoken in her analysis of Harry Potter, is the opposite of Harper Lee in many ways, but she obviously liked the story and was influenced by it.
Funnily enough, googling "Rowling" and "To Kill A Mockingbird" gets one result that compares Rowling's seven books to Lee's one, plenty of booksellers offering both books, and rattlesnakeroot's post on the very first page. Harper Lee is not an obvious or claimed influence on JK Rowling.
I studied To Kill A Mockingbird in high school too and I'm not American, but why do I suspect rattlesnakeroot's American head is stuck somewhere deeply up her American colon?
HP isn't written in first person, but with the third person limited it is as if adult Harry was looking over young Harry's shoulder, which is similar to the way Scout tells her story in Mockingbird.
Harper Lee invented third-person-limited point of view from a child protagonist, you know.
This sort of thing is ridiculous. "Rowling's work is vaguely similar to Other Work because it involves black squiggly lines on a page and involves characters! But it is unlike Other Work in other ways. Therefore, Rowling is wrong."
I've heard of similar criticisms of "Uncle Tom's Cabin," actually, going all the way back to Wright and Baldwin in the '30s and '40s. The biggest seems to be that the title character, while saintly, is basically a doormat and is in fact portrayed positively for never trying to do anything about his situation.
Yup. Harper Lee might have been patronising in the well-meaning sense, but by the standards of the day she was incredibly unbigoted, and frankly give me an unintentionally patronising well-meaning person like Arthur Weasley over an openly bigoted piece of crap like Lucius Malfoy any day.
That is so different from J.K. Rowling who talked while she was writing, then talked in between books, then talked more when the movies came out, and on and on.
You really can't compare an author in the mass-media age with an author before it in terms of fannish interaction, or an author of a single book with an author of an on-going series. Not even apples and oranges but apples and DVDs.
Most of all, when the series was over and most of our questions were answered, she jumped onstage
I love how the people who are so affronted about the interview information that conflicts with their headcanon either completely forget or choose to ignore that she only did/does those things because people want her to. If she were shouting her opinions at an uncaring populace, she'd just update her own site constantly.
and began to tell us what he had just read, or tell us that our perceptions were wrong, or there was something wrong with us as readers because only she as the author had the answers. And that freaked out a lot of people, including me.
It didn't really freak out "a lot of people" in the big picture of how many people pay attention to HP stuff. Literally nobody I've ever met IRL has had anything bad to say about interviews or interview canon.
You really can't compare an author in the mass-media age with an author before it in terms of fannish interaction
Yes, this. Harper Lee may well have given many more interviews if the book had been published nowadays. They forget that when JKR talks about her characters, it's because she knows that her readers want to know more about them. That's the whole point of Pottermore - to explore the world and get little tidbits that we couldn't get from the books. (Yesterday, I got onto Pottermore for the very first time and squealed in joy when I saw that JKR detailed a few teacher's wand details for book one, because I've been wanting to know wand details for quite a few of my favourite characters, like Remus and Sirius).
The only fans who 'freaked out' about that sort of thing did so because the information given in the interviews Jossed a really major portion of their headcanon that they were strongly invested in. It all comes down to them feeling entitled to JKR's validation via the character they identified with. And yeah, she created the characters, so her interpretation tends to hold more weight.
I remember theorising, before the release of the OOTP book, that one of Sirius' parents was either a Muggle or a Muggle-born (which would have made him a half-blood). Don't know why I thought that, I just did. Then the book came out and turns out they were not only pureblood, but the sort of purebloods who would have been incredibly offended at the very notion. Oddly enough, I didn't moan that Sirius was 'RUINED FOREVER' and that JKR was a hack. Go figure.
Comparing anyone to Harper Lee is just weird. She published one book. A great book, yes. But her decision to seclude herself is actually a big deal, and was a big deal when her book was published -- it's one of the first things that comes up when people talk about her because it's so unusual. Claiming an author who doesn't do that bad is like calling an actress who doesn't go all Greta Garbo "I want to be alone" bad.
Also, the "how dare an author talk about her books!" and "how dare an author think she knows her books better than we do!" things are absolutely ridiculous. It sounds like jealousy to me.