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SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

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SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by starshuffler on 2011-01-06, 00:10

Hello, everyone, and welcome to the first installment of the Grand Online Book Discussion. What a Face For the sake of organization, we are dividing the discussion of the book into three parts. We'll create new threads for tangential topics as we see fit.

This thread is for the discussion of the first six [6] chapters of the book Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone [or Philosopher's Stone, if you have the Bloomsbury edition].

• Chapter 1: The Boy Who Lived
- in which the readers are being familiarized with the life of the Dursleys, and Vernon Dursley notices something strange going on. In this chapter, Albus Dumbledore, Minerva McGonagall and Hagrid leave the baby Harry at the Dursley doorstep.

• Chapter 2: The Vanishing Glass
- At the zoo with the Dursleys for Dudley's birthday, Harry discovers he can communicate with snakes, and that he can make strange things happen.

• Chapter 3: The Letters from No One
- Harry receives his first letter. Observing that the letter comes from Hogwarts, Vernon refuses to let him read it. With Vernon's refusal the Dursleys receive a barrage of letters. Harry moves his quarters from the cupboard under the stairs to Dudley's second bedroom. When the mail gets out of hand, Vernon takes the family to a hut on an island.

• Chapter 4: The Keeper of the Keys
- Hagrid finds Harry, gives him the letter. Shocked to find that he knows nothing about his past, Hagrid proceeds to tell Harry about his powers, his parents, Voldemort and the wizarding world.

• Chapter 5: Diagon Alley
Hagrid takes Harry to Diagon Alley. At the Leaky Cauldron, everyone recognizes him. He meets Quirell, the Dark Arts professor at Hogwarts. They visit Gringotts to withdraw some of Harry's wizard money, as well a secret package upon the orders of Dumbledore. Harry buys all the things he needed for school, and receives a snowy owl, a birthday present from Hagrid. At Ollivander's shop, the wand-maker is fascinated by the wand that chose Harry.

• Chapter 6: The Journey from Platform Nine and Three-quarters
Vernon hastily leaves Harry at King's Cross Station. Not knowing where Platform 9 3/4 is, Harry receives help from a witch [whom we later know as Molly Weasley] who tells him to walk through the barrier. On the train he makes friends with Ron who acquaints him further with the wizarding world. He also meets Hermione Granger, and three other boys, Crabbe, Goyle and Draco Malfoy. The train arrives at Hogwarts.

==================================

[For everyone's information, I only have access to the e-book at the moment, so please be patient with me if I can't give exact page numbers. Thanks.]

==================================

Here are a few guide questions to start off the discussion: [We can add more, as the thread progresses]

• Why do you think Dumbledore left a note with the baby Harry to inform the Dursleys instead of talking to them personally?
• Why did Dumbledore choose to leave Harry with muggles, instead of letting him grow up in the wizarding world?
• Do you think it was really necessary for Professor McGonagall to stay a cat all day?
• Why do you think Harry's scar was shaped like a lightning bolt?
• The only thing Harry likes about his appearance is the thin scar shaped like a bolt of lightning on his forehead. Why do you think he likes it? How do you feel about that piece of information?
• How did the Dursleys' cruelty contribute to Harry's personality/disposition as a wizard?
• Do you think it's better for Harry to know that he was special from the start? Why? Why not?
• Why did Vernon impose extreme measures just so Harry won't be able to read the letter?
• If you were Harry, would you have immediately made friends with Draco and his gang? Why? Why not?


Here we go! What a Face

[PS: Please feel free to post your thoughts regarding the covered chapters. We are allowed to have different opinions, but let's all agree to disagree when that happens, okay?]
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by pipeclay on 2011-01-06, 11:32

This is really exciting.. Razz.. well.. since this thread came unexpected (i thought i still have a few weeks pa).. di ako prepared.. haha.. anyways.. here it goes:

• Why did Dumbledore choose to leave Harry with muggles, instead of letting him grow up in the wizarding world?
For me, this part of the chapter shows how Dumbledore has planned Harry's life from the very beginning. I always thought he would make a good Divination professor, given that most of his guesses are almost accurate, that it would pass as a good prediction of the future.. anyways, I have this thinking that he knows how Harry would be treated by the Dursleys, which would be very different if he would grow up in the wizarding world. In that way, he has already started preparing Harry for his fate when You Know Who returns.

The only thing Harry likes about his appearance is the thin scar
shaped like a bolt of lightning on his forehead. Why do you think he
likes it? How do you feel about that piece of information?
I think Harry, being deprived of love, feels that his scar makes him special. It is his only remembrance of the last few moments he has with his parents, which is forbidden to be discussed within the Dursley home.. he owns nothing.. except for that scar, that not all kids/people have. It is his most prized possession.
• Why did Vernon impose extreme measures just so Harry won't be able to read the letter?
I have asked myself, If I knew such people who can magic things their way, then should I still try stopping them? Vernon and Petunia knew what Harry's "lot" are capable of, but I guess their fear of magic made them pretend, or believe, that they could stop Harry being a person they feared most. Magic scares them, therefore, they would try their best to prevent on facing one. They have tried making Harry's life miserable, and giving in to one little favor (which is giving Harry his letter) will hurt their "pride".

• If you were Harry, would you have immediately made friends with Draco and his gang? Why? Why not?
No. Ayoko ng maangas eh.. hehe.. pero honest reason is because if I were Harry, meeting Draco and his gang would instantly remind me of Dudley.. bully. Plus, the way Draco talked about being put to Slytherin (aargh.. i can't quote).. will remind me of the Dursleys.. too much self-importance.. too much pride.. I've had enough of that in the muggle world, and I will surely want a difference now that I have the chance.. 'ayt? Razz
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by Elerrina on 2011-01-06, 12:30

• Why do you think Dumbledore left a note with the baby Harry to inform the Dursleys instead of talking to them personally?

I think Dumbledore may have thought that a letter would allow the Dursleys time to process what he was saying. A personal conversation would probably not have worked out as the sudden information overload might have overwhelmed the Dursleys, and prompted some violent reactions.

• Why did Dumbledore choose to leave Harry with muggles, instead of letting him grow up in the wizarding world?

As Dumbledore explained in page 13 (SS, Scholastic Edition), it was to keep Harry from getting too full of himself at such a young age. Staying with a wizarding family, no matter who, would I think pretty much guarantee star treatment, since he was their "hero". We'd end up with a Harry whose personality would be closer to Draco's, and that's not a guy who could face Voldemort.

On that note, I think it was also Dumbledore's first test for Harry. He had to see whether Harry could take trials and abuse and still survive (not physically, but emotionally and psychologically). He was already beginning the task of "hardening" Harry even in his youth so that when the time for hardship came (i.e., going after the Stone), it wasn't something he would easily back down from.

• Do you think it was really necessary for Professor McGonagall to stay a cat all day?

Probably not--it really must have been difficult! Unless she really enjoys being a cat Laughing I think she could have morphed back to human for a while and used a charm to keep herself hidden.

I do wonder though, how she knew where to wait for Dumbledore. How did she know Dumbledore intended to go to the Dursleys'?

• The only thing Harry likes about his appearance is the thin scar shaped like a bolt of lightning on his forehead. Why do you think he likes it? How do you feel about that piece of information?

I think he likes it because a lightning bolt is pretty cool for a scar. As kids, I think we like to have something unique that sets us apart from the other kids (in a good way), and for Harry, that's his scar.

• How did the Dursleys' cruelty contribute to Harry's personality/disposition as a wizard?

I think the effect of their cruelty reflects in how he passionately throws himself into the fight to keep Voldemort from getting the Stone. He doesn't want others to suffer the way he did when he was under such oppression, and that gives much fuel to his desire to vanquish Voldemort, even under threat of death and/or expulsion.

• Do you think it's better for Harry to know that he was special from the start? Why? Why not?

Are we talking "special" in the sense that he was a wizard? Or "special" in the sense that he's The Boy Who Lived?

• Why did Vernon impose extreme measures just so Harry won't be able to read the letter?

I think it was his fear of being even more involved with the wizarding world than he and his family already were. He might be thinking that they have already given in to Dumbledore once--taking Harry in--and that should be the end of their connection to the wizarding world. Harry going to Hogwarts would mean a resurgence of what Petunia had seen as a child and come to despise--spells, wands, strange creatures. Considering how Vernon didn't even want to bother her with a mention of the Potters, I could see why he would want to do whatever he could to keep Harry from being a reminder of all that upset Petunia.

• If you were Harry, would you have immediately made friends with Draco and his gang? Why? Why not?

To be honest, I might've been a bit tempted. I always thought it was interesting that when Harry met Draco for the first time in Madam Malkin's, Draco says hello first (SS, Scholastic, p.77) and makes conversation even though he didn't know yet who Harry was. In a weirdly pompous sense, Draco was almost welcoming, and to someone who didn't know anyone in the wizarding world aside from Hagrid, anyone who was my own age and going to Hogwarts too, it would have been a nice feeling.

Given the experience with Dudley, though, I would not have stayed friends with Draco. His behavior on the train sealed my opinion of him, and I would not have wanted to hang out with him, Crabbe, and Goyle at all.
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by DADAProfAE on 2011-01-06, 12:46

Fab questions, Prefect Jovan!

Let me answer the two questions which I find the most intriguing, if not the most significant in the entire septology:

• The only thing Harry likes about his appearance is the thin scar shaped like a bolt of lightning on his forehead. Why do you think he likes it? How do you feel about that piece of information?

This particular detail, albeit harmless at first, is actually bursting with information! Now that we have the benefit of hindsight (see Deathly Hallows and its plotline about the Horxruxes), we can now look at the scar as a reminder, not just of Harry's past, but of his future. While obviously, the past we refer to is the tragic death of his parents in the hands of the Dark Lord, the scar is directly linked to Harry's future choices----how he would be willing to give himself up in favor of the greater good (again, see Deathly Hallows for "greater good" discussion). How Harry would be willing to sever the ties that bind him with Voldemort. And this tie, this link is his very scar. A reminder, not just of a tragedy, but of his future triumph.

Another reading of this scar would be how Harry loves, even takes pleasure in being one of the marginalized. While a scar is normally seen as an eyesore, an unwanted mark on the skin, for Harry, it signals his very difference from the majority. We know how Harry has always been treated as an invisible entity in the Dursley household. It's as if he doesn't exist. If at all, he is treated unfairly and consistently with malice by his relatives. This scar marks him as different from everyone else. This is his only badge of identity, and he is proud of this difference.

• How did the Dursleys' cruelty contribute to Harry's personality/disposition as a wizard?

The Dursleys, though never frightening, are always nasty and absurd. Their fear of imagination and magic, their hypocrisy for anything unconventional makes them easy targets in the story. Their hypocrisy is so absurd we are immediately prompted to like not only their victim (Harry) but also the magical world Harry is about to enter. It is a clear case of automatically liking what the Dursleys hate.

In terms of Harry's development as a hero, the Dursleys have a more complicated significance (other than providing immediate comic relief). By abusing Harry, the Dursleys also predispose our Hero Harry to identify with the abused. Harry idenitifies with the victimized (the caged snake in the zoo, defending Hagrid against Draco, and later on defending Neville).

There is empathy. The abuse was character-building for the young hero. It would've been easier for Harry to side with Draco the bully (his life would've been totally different) but he knows at a young age that what comes easy is not always right. Something in his character make-up, perhaps because of the learned empathy from the old school of hard knocks that guides Harry in the choices that he makes and continues to make.

The novels above all speak of tolerance, of empowering the disenfranchised, of highlighting the value of the marginalized. Harry is the poster boy for the abused, for the invisible, for the oppressed. The cruelty that he experienced in the hands of the Dursleys shaped his very personality as a likeable, very human hero.
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by Void on 2011-01-06, 21:10

• Do you think it's better for Harry to know that he was special from the start? Why? Why not?

It would not be better kasi mga mostly ang taong sikat ay lumalaki ang ulo, that makes Harry no different. If he knew all along he was that famous in the Wizard World it would have a big effect sa kanyang personality, and the harry we know would cease to exist

• If you were Harry, would you have immediately made friends with Draco and his gang? Why? Why not?

if im Harry, i would not join Draco's gang but i would like to be sa house ng slytherin and make my own gang haha.. i dont like being under someone else's shadow.
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by lianne on 2011-01-06, 23:36

DADAProfAE wrote:• The only thing Harry likes about his appearance is the thin scar shaped like a bolt of lightning on his forehead. Why do you think he likes it? How do you feel about that piece of information?

Another reading of this scar would be how Harry loves, even takes pleasure in being one of the marginalized. While a scar is normally seen as an eyesore, an unwanted mark on the skin, for Harry, it signals his very difference from the majority. We know how Harry has always been treated as an invisible entity in the Dursley household. It's as if he doesn't exist. If at all, he is treated unfairly and consistently with malice by his relatives. This scar marks him as different from everyone else. This is his only badge of identity, and he is proud of this difference.

This is really interesting Dadaf...because isn't it that later on, it's the same scar (that Harry likes, that differentiates Harry) that brings Harry the unwanted attention of his fellow witches and wizards?! Sorry, I hope I'm not preempting the discussion here. I find it interesting that when he was living with the Dursleys, Harry liked his scar because (1) it's the only souvenir he had of the night his parents died, (2) he thought it was cool and (3) it sets him apart from the Dursleys. But later on, when he was already in the wizarding world, he found it a bit tiresome to always be recognized through his scar, the scar that in a way, robbed him of a family.

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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by khaye007 on 2011-01-07, 03:26

Reference: E-book (I've got my books on the province and still waiting for them to be sent here in Manila.^^)
pipeclay wrote:
• Why did Dumbledore choose to leave Harry with muggles, instead of letting him grow up in the wizarding world?
For me, this part of the chapter shows how Dumbledore has planned Harry's life from the very beginning. I always thought he would make a good Divination professor, given that most of his guesses are almost accurate, that it would pass as a good prediction of the future.. anyways, I have this thinking that he knows how Harry would be treated by the Dursleys, which would be very different if he would grow up in the wizarding world. In that way, he has already started preparing Harry for his fate when You Know Who returns.
Dumbledore is really good in predicting the future. And I think he got a hint that Harry is protected by somewhat "Family bond" because Petunia is the only known living relative of Harry. But I guess, he wasn't able to predict the the Dursley's won't tell the truth to Harry as Dumbledore expected to be done by them.

starshuffler wrote:• Do you think it was really necessary for Professor McGonagall to stay a cat all day?
It's the same question I had in mind. Another thing is that, why did she waited the whole day sitting on a brick of Dursley's garden and didn't bother to celebrate with other wizards even for a minute (based on how she was seen by Mr. Dursley when he left and arrived Number4)?

starshuffler wrote:• Why did Dumbledore choose to leave Harry with muggles, instead of letting him grow up in the wizarding world?
Because of his popularity. In the muggle world, he is a nobody. A nobody who won't be treated special and will be able to learn every single lesson a child must know (I guess it turned up to be like this after his encounter with Ron in Hogwarts Express. He was able to sympathize with him that he used to own not even a single centavo until before Hagrid arrived.)

If he grew up in the wizarding world, things will be different. He will be well provided (people might take turns of taking custody of him, or donate something for his daily life.) He will grew up knowing that he is special at it could take up to his brain (and be like those gang of Draco or be the leader of them as a proud pure-blood).

Dumbledore knows best. That's what I believed.

starshuffler wrote:• Why do you think Harry's scar was shaped like a lightning bolt?
For me it symbolizes POWER. A power like a lightning which could struck you to death. And to Harry, it could symbolize different power.
>>The power he has within himself
>>The power of which Voldemort exerted to kill him
>>The power which saved him from Voldemort (it could be his or to Lily's)

I don't know if it's only me wondering what could have happened to Harry if he didn't able to meet the Weasley's at Platform nine and three-quarters? Will it be Hagrid who's gonna pick him?

(Out of curiosity) How much money was there in stored for Harry inside the Gringgots? Very Happy
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by DADAProfAE on 2011-01-07, 09:16

lianne wrote:

This is really interesting Dadaf...because isn't it that later on, it's the same scar (that Harry likes, that differentiates Harry) that brings Harry the unwanted attention of his fellow witches and wizards?! Sorry, I hope I'm not preempting the discussion here. I find it interesting that when he was living with the Dursleys, Harry liked his scar because (1) it's the only souvenir he had of the night his parents died, (2) he thought it was cool and (3) it sets him apart from the Dursleys. But later on, when he was already in the wizarding world, he found it a bit tiresome to always be recognized through his scar, the scar that in a way, robbed him of a family.


Good point, Head Girl! As I recall, Harry's fascination for his scar was only up to a third in the novel. When it was finally revealed to him that he's no ordinary boy, and wizards and witches everywhere are starting to recognize him (courtesy of the scar), Harry starts to blend in with his surroundings, at least starts to attempt to blend in. The desire to be no different from the rest, to fit in, to be just an ordinary boy despite the scar (and all the history that comes with it) takes precedence over having a singular, unique identity (compare this with the young Tom Riddle who gave no slight disbelief upon learning he is a wizard. See the 6th book- the Half-Blood Prince for reference).

I suppose Harry's pride for his scar never really went away when he realized he's a wizard. It's just that people around him see the scar for reasons that remind him not just of the tragedy but of the burden that goes with it. He is the Chosen One after all (although this one will be revealed much later in the septology).

The scar, a symbol of a flaw, marks our young character as a hero in progress. It also symbolizes the quest he has to make. A scar is always a representation of a hero's heritage, a hero's birthright. Think Eragon and the scar on his hand. Think Superman and his legendary 'S'. Think Indiana Jones and his facial blemish. Think Maximus Meridius and his numerous body scars. Heroes and their scars (whether literally or figuratively) persist in literature.
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by Elerrina on 2011-01-07, 18:05

DADAProfAE wrote:Good point, Head Girl! As I recall, Harry's fascination for his scar was only up to a third in the novel. When it was finally revealed to him that he's no ordinary boy, and wizards and witches everywhere are starting to recognize him (courtesy of the scar), Harry starts to blend in with his surroundings, at least starts to attempt to blend in. The desire to be no different from the rest, to fit in, to be just an ordinary boy despite the scar (and all the history that comes with it) takes precedence over having a singular, unique identity (compare this with the young Tom Riddle who gave no slight disbelief upon learning he is a wizard. See the 6th book- the Half-Blood Prince for reference).

I suppose Harry's pride for his scar never really went away when he realized he's a wizard. It's just that people around him see the scar for reasons that remind him not just of the tragedy but of the burden that goes with it. He is the Chosen One after all (although this one will be revealed much later in the septology).

Agreed. In addition, Harry's own realization of what the scar represents changes his view of it--he initially thinks of this as this cool mark because I think it never really dawned on him at that point what it meant to have that scar as a result of his parents' death (since he thought it was a normal car accident that killed them). But now that he knows that scar represents how he survived while his family lost their lives at the hands of Voldemort, it does lose the "coolness factor" he once attributed to it.

DADAProfAE wrote:The scar, a symbol of a flaw, marks our young character as a hero in progress. It also symbolizes the quest he has to make. A scar is always a representation of a hero's heritage, a hero's birthright. Think Eragon and the scar on his hand. Think Superman and his legendary 'S'. Think Indiana Jones and his facial blemish. Think Maximus Meridius and his numerous body scars. Heroes and their scars (whether literally or figuratively) persist in literature.

Don't forget Frodo's wound from the Ringwraiths Very Happy

It's also interesting to note that some heroes are born with scars, while others get them along the way--it underscores the difference in journeys each hero goes through and how they go through it.
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by michaelcute on 2011-01-07, 21:55

• Do you think it's better for Harry to know that he was special from the start? Why? Why not?
No, because Hogwarts was on their difficult times because of the serious attacks of You-Know-Who to those who oppose him. Even if they are wizards, they could not tell whose on You-Know-Who's accomplice or not. If Harry knows it from the very start he would lived his life out of vengeance and not of love. He will pursue to revenge his parent's killer and end up nothing like Voldemort who lived his life in shame, anger, murderer, and in great distressed.

• The only thing Harry likes about his appearance is the thin scar shaped like a bolt of lightning on his forehead. Why do you think he likes it? How do you feel about that piece of information?
Harry wants his thin scar on his forehead because that was the only proof that his parents gave their lives for their one and only son. Harry sees his scar as a gift not a burden. That's scar was the only proof that he was the only survivor on You-Know-Who's Attack in that time.

• If you were Harry, would you have immediately made friends with Draco and his gang? Why? Why not?
Certainly not, because I don't want to have a friend who were ill-mannered and they seem not to be my type of friends. I don't want an arrogant and rude friends.
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by starshuffler on 2011-01-07, 23:05

Yay! Thanks for all your feedback. What a Face [Akala ko nilalangaw na itong thread.] Laughing

Give me time to process everything here [muggle life, oh sigh], and I'll be posting more Qs for discussion.

In the meantime, keep those thoughts coming! Very Happy
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by DADAProfAE on 2011-01-08, 11:43

pipeclay wrote:For me, this part of the chapter shows how Dumbledore has planned Harry's life from the very beginning. I always thought he would make a good Divination professor, given that most of his guesses are almost accurate, that it would pass as a good prediction of the future.. anyways, I have this thinking that he knows how Harry would be treated by the Dursleys, which would be very different if he would grow up in the wizarding world. In that way, he has already started preparing Harry for his fate when You Know Who returns.

Hmm. . . I'm not so sure if the Headmaster actually planned Harry's life from the very beginning. I wouldn't assume Albus had the heart to sacrifice Harry from the very start, from year one of the would be hero's life. I guess all Albus had in mind was to keep Harry safe. That was the immediate concern. And I suppose being the great wizard that he was, he was familiar with the power of blood, of being in familial company, so he placed Harry in the "care" of the Dursleys. And I also don't think Albus had the foreknowledge of the extent of the Dursleys' cruelty. That would be uncharacteristic of him to make grave assumptions without solid proof. He's always been an unprejudiced individual, so despite all protests from McGonagall, he gave the Dursleys the benefit of the doubt. In fact, Dumbledore himself would later on express his surprise and indignation as to the treatment of Harry by his relatives (see Dumbledore's admonishment of the Dursleys in The Half-Blood Prince, Chapter 3: Will and Won't).

While Albus knew the possible effects of putting Harry in the care of somebody within the wizarding world (see his conversation with McGonagall in Chapter 1 of Sorcerer's Stone), I don't think he knew how Harry would ultimately turn out given the kind of care Harry would be receiving from the Dursleys. Everything is up in the air at this point.

And while Albus is a great wizard, I wouldn't peg him as a Divination Professor. Aside from the fact that he doesn't really care much for prophecies (see his conversation with Harry in Prisoner of Azkaban, Chapter 21: Hermione's Secret), I think Albus puts greater stock on choices made by an individual rather than what Fate or Destiny might have in store for any wizard or witch. Dumbledore is a highly instinctive man. This is perhaps a result of his genius and his long and varied experiences as a magus. His aptitude for making on the spot speculations is the upshot of the wisdom he gained in all of his 150 fruitful years. He is a Sage after all, and sages are renowned for their ability to recognize patterns in history. For with this recognition, one is able to prepare for the future, which the Headmaster ably did.
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by khaye007 on 2011-01-08, 15:15

Elerrina wrote:
Agreed. In addition, Harry's own realization of what the scar represents changes his view of it--he initially thinks of this as this cool mark because I think it never really dawned on him at that point what it meant to have that scar as a result of his parents' death (since he thought it was a normal car accident that killed them). But now that he knows that scar represents how he survived while his family lost their lives at the hands of Voldemort, it does lose the "coolness factor" he once attributed to it.

In addition, he realized na that scar also symbolizes the bond or power he is sharing with Voldemort..
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by michaelcute on 2011-01-08, 18:03

• Why did Dumbledore choose to leave Harry with muggles, instead of letting him grow up in the wizarding world?
I think Dumbledore has a reason for letting Harry grew up in Muggle world instead of Wizard world. I think Dumbledore think that Harry will not be ready to face many challenges in wizard world.
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by DADAProfAE on 2011-01-08, 18:08

khaye007 wrote:
Elerrina wrote:
Agreed. In addition, Harry's own realization of what the scar represents changes his view of it--he initially thinks of this as this cool mark because I think it never really dawned on him at that point what it meant to have that scar as a result of his parents' death (since he thought it was a normal car accident that killed them). But now that he knows that scar represents how he survived while his family lost their lives at the hands of Voldemort, it does lose the "coolness factor" he once attributed to it.

In addition, he realized na that scar also symbolizes the bond or power he is sharing with Voldemort..

Do you mean Harry? Do you really think Harry, aged 11, in the first 6 chapters of the first novel already realizes this bond, this power that he shares with the Dark Lord? I don't agree. It's too early in the game for this assumption.
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by khaye007 on 2011-01-08, 19:01

^ay sorry po. Oo nga pala it's beyond the coverage of this topic. sorry.
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by DADAProfAE on 2011-01-08, 19:39

^No actually, what you wrote is true. It's just that, we have to differentiate between what we think and what we think a character, in this case Harry, thinks. While it is true that yes, both Harry and Voldemort share a certain bond (figuratively represented by the scar as I already mentioned in one of my earlier posts), what Harry thinks at this point is quite different, wouldn't you agree?

At any rate, the question as to why it is shaped like a lightning bolt still intrigues me. Lightning symbolizes a lot of things: energy, light, illumination, wisdom, and so forth and has persisted in mythology even before Harry Potter. Zeus made it famous as his weapon as well. It is not surprising for the name Zeus, from the Greek dios or dyeu (or Diyos in Tagalog), originally means "bright" or "to shine" (see: online etymology for 'Zeus' ). So given that Rowling has a penchant for Latin words and Greek mythology, is it safe to assume that she wants us to think that the boy was touched by the gods? Laughing Then again, it was the Dark Lord who gave him that mark. Smile
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by Elerrina on 2011-01-08, 22:57

DADAProfAE wrote:At any rate, the question as to why it is shaped like a lightning bolt still intrigues me. Lightning symbolizes a lot of things: energy, light, illumination, wisdom, and so forth and has persisted in mythology even before Harry Potter. Zeus made it famous as his weapon as well. It is not surprising for the name Zeus, from the Greek dios or dyeu (or Diyos in Tagalog), originally means "bright" or "to shine" (see: online etymology for 'Zeus' ). So given that Rowling has a penchant for Latin words and Greek mythology, is it safe to assume that she wants us to think that the boy was touched by the gods? Laughing Then again, it was the Dark Lord who gave him that mark. Smile

I never considered that, but yes, it does make sense. It would be a twisted version of "being touched by a god"--Harry's marked by the villain who's aiming to be a "wizard god". It would be even more interesting if Voldemort had truly had this intention, marking him with Zeus's symbol as some kind of final taunt at Harry, the boy who he believed had been prophesied to end him, before he delivered the killing blow...
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by DADAProfAE on 2011-01-10, 13:51

^Indeed! That's a brilliant way of putting it. Voldemort and his attempt to be a "wizard god." He's always been after immortality, and that is the very thing that defines and differentiates the gods from humans. Perhaps Voldemort fancies himself as a bright light, as the illuminated one (like Lucifer fancying himself as the enlightened angel, hence the name, from "luce"--light), which is actually an exact counterpoint to his title---the Dark Lord. Laughing

While the Dark Lord actually has the Dark Mark to symbolize his dark deed, the one left for Harry is a lightning bolt scar. Perhaps now that we have the benefit of hindsight we can see (and say) how his dark deed boomeranged on him. Harry was not left with darkness but with light(ning). A reminder of something positive that is yet to happen perhaps?
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by michaelcute on 2011-01-10, 14:09

Harry Potter has obtained a number of scars over his lifetime, as well as a few injuries that may have resulted in scarring. The one he is most well known for, and the first he received, is on his forehead and is shaped like a lightning bolt; it is the result of a Killing Curse striking him when he was an infant and played a role in his conflict with, and eventual defeat of, You-Know-Who.

Look what Hagrid said, "Yes. That ain't no ordinary cut on your forehead, Harry. A mark like that only comes from being touched by a curse, and an evil curse at that."
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by MIASelene on 2011-01-10, 14:57

I've been meaning to answer some of these questions for a while but my mind has been mush for the last week.... or at least I hope I'm over it. So here goes....

I think Harry's scar is shaped like a lightning bolt because JK Rowling thought of associating Harry with something that is wonderful, mysterious and yet deadly at the same time. One object that could make him memorable to readers. One mention of the word and presto, they'll immediately connect it with Harry Potter.

The phrase "as fast as lightning" fits well with how we can describe Harry. We know he's a good Seeker and to be a good one you have to be lightning fast to catch the Snitch. "Lightning strikes twice", look at what happened to Harry and the Dark Lord's first and last encounters. By merely associating Harry with lightning clearly says that this character packs a strong wallop (despite his seemingly quiet demeanor) if should you ever mess around with him.

JK Rowling's like an Oracle who gave us a clue, in this case a lightning scar. One object, that in itself holds many answers as to what things are yet to happen in Harry's life. One object that would define what kind of person Harry would become, his trials and his triumphs as his story unfolds.
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by DADAProfAE on 2011-01-12, 18:38

^Ah yes, indeed. The scar is iconic. I totally agree. I remember writing a paper for the Nimbus 2003 Conference (Florida) about the scar and its meaning, both on the literal and figurative levels. Book available here. *shameless plugging* Laughing

The scar indeed represents Harry and our hero, whether he wanted to or not, has become everything the scar represents (both the positive and the negative). Along with the glasses of Harry (and btw, Claire, your comment about Harry being a Seeker vis-a-vis the scar is right on the mark. well done!), that which represents him being a seeker on the literal (he has poor eyesight, therefore needs aid in seeking/looking) and on the figurative level (Harry in search of his identity), the scar does a wondrous job of telling us readers visually the very nature of Harry's character. Sharp, intense, radiant, and constantly subject to scrutiny.
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by tiffy on 2011-01-12, 22:53

Elerrina wrote:

I do wonder though, how she knew where to wait for Dumbledore. How did she know Dumbledore intended to go to the Dursleys'?


I've read somewhere that she got the information from Hagrid. I think she does not know who the Dursleys are and why Dumbledore was there. - Ebook, Chapter 1 page 9. Smile


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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by allanwhistletop on 2011-01-15, 18:17

• Why do you think Dumbledore left a note with the baby Harry to inform the Dursleys instead of talking to them personally?
We can only presume that Dumbledore wouldn't want to shock the Dursleys. Describing them in the first book, they are muggles not open to the idea of magic. We can presume that Lily could have told Dumbledore, maybe over butterbeer, about her sister's relative "discomfort" about witchcraft and wizardry, and thus it would be a shock when a man in robes presents them a wizard baby whose parents were killed by a dark wizard.

• Why did Dumbledore choose to leave Harry with muggles, instead of letting him grow up in the wizarding world?
People are sometimes afraid of going out of their comfort zone, don't want to stick out like a sore thumb in the crown. We want to conform to the norms and aftraid to be exonerated by the general public. The Dursleys are somehow in that extreme, afraid to become "weird" and not blend with the society. Because of this, they would have wanted no part of Harry's world and would have treated him like a normal boy. As what Albus, Minerva, and Rubeus discussed in Chapter 1, Harry might become too proud of himself when he stays in the wizarding world. However, Dumbledore didn't count on the Dursleys becoming too cruel to Harry because of his wizard bloodline.

• How did the Dursleys' cruelty contribute to Harry's personality/disposition as a wizard?
Well, we can say that he didn't become a proud and selfish boy because of his accomplishment. At least, he would be partly ready to face much harder and worse adversaries in the wizard world. He wouldn't become afraid easily from suffering. Somehow, his experiences from the Dursleys would toughen him up.

• Do you think it's better for Harry to know that he was special from the start? Why? Why not?
As what I have said, it is better for Harry not to know he was special so that he wouldn't be proud of himself too much. It would be a tragedy if the hero of wizards and witches become too full of himself and acting Draco-like.

• Do you think it was really necessary for Professor McGonagall to stay a cat all day?
Privet Drive is decribed as a normal community with the houses looking very much alike and clean cut. McGonagall would have stood out, even if she was wearing muggle clothes, if she would wait out in the streets all day for Dumbledore so that she wouldn't miss him. She would be less inconspicuous as a cat.

• Why do you think Harry's scar was shaped like a lightning bolt?
We can only ask JK Rowling why the scar is lightning shaped to be sure. We can only guess maybe for artistic purposes, or Rowling wanted to infuse some meaning of "God like" ideas, as what other PHP members have said before. For me, the curse is a flash of light which is green, and it would have been aesthetically more compatible with a lightning which is a flash of light in the sky.

• The only thing Harry likes about his appearance is the thin scar shaped like a bolt of lightning on his forehead. Why do you think he likes it? How do you feel about that piece of information?
It is his only connection to his parents especially since there are no pictures or any sign of memories of his parents in the Dursleys' home, and therefore it is somekind of a memento, thought a tragic one.

• Why did Vernon impose extreme measures just so Harry won't be able to read the letter?
As what I've said above, the Dursleys are an extreme conformist in the society, and thus they wouldn't want to be involved in anything that would displace them from the community. They want to stamp out anything that is odd, including Harry's lineage in the wizarding world, as what Vernon has tried to tell Hagrid in the hut.

• If you were Harry, would you have immediately made friends with Draco and his gang? Why? Why not?
If I were Harry, I wouldn't have made friends with Draco. In SS page 77, Harry thought that Draco is becoming like Dudley in his mind while they were talking in Madam Malkins'. We all know how cruel Dudley was to Harry, therefore, Harry has no plans of connecting with a Dudley like person in the wizarding world.
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by geewitch on 2011-01-17, 13:14

Dear students,

I have been reading through the posts in this thread and I'm very please that there are a lot of great insights! In particular, I was impressed with Elerrina's (Ravenclaw House) organised and well-thought out responses. Because of this, I am awarding her 20 points.

Keep up the good work!

To everyone else, it's time to jump-start your brain cells, re-discover your love of reading Harry Potter, and to participate in the discussion!

Prof G
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by Nargles and Snorkacks on 2011-01-19, 09:46

• Why do you think Dumbledore left a note with the baby Harry to inform the Dursleys instead of talking to them personally?

I think Dumbledore knew how the Dursleys could have refused to take Harry in if he had tried to talk to them personally. He already knew how the Dursleys were not particularly fond of magic, and that their dislike of magic could affect their pity for a relative. Also, they would be able to say that Dumbledore (or some other wizarding family) can take care of Harry. Without his presence they would be more likely to feel pity for Harry because he was just left all alone on the doorstep. I think Dumbledore wanted them to feel this pity for them to at least half-heartedly take Harry in.

• Why did Dumbledore choose to leave Harry with muggles, instead of letting him grow up in the wizarding world?

As Dumbledore said on page 13, Chapter 1, Scholastic Edition of Sorcerer's Stone, it would not be wise to let Harry grow up in a world in which he is very famous and highly-regarded at such a young age. Dumbledore probably took note of James Potter's temperament and did not want to risk Harry growing up over-confidently in case he was more like the young James Potter than his mother, Lily Potter (née Evans).

• Do you think it was really necessary for Professor McGonagall to stay a cat all day?

Well, honestly, though she did not play the part well (as noted both by Dumbledore and Vernon Dursley on Chapter 1), staying as a cat is one of the best ways to spy on the Dursleys. It was probably quite comfortable for her, too, rather than staying invisible all day as a witch.

• Why do you think Harry's scar was shaped like a lightning bolt?

I'd like to think of it as a symbol of leadership on Harry's part, and Voldemort's power on Voldemort's part. I do not know if this is what JKR had in mind when she gave Harry the lightning scar, but I've always associated lightning with the Greek God Zeus. In a way, I see quite a few similarities between the two: they were both leaders, they were quite paranoid at certain times (an example of this would be Harry's paranoia over Sirius Black in Order of the Phoenix, and Zeus's paranoid distrust of his brothers) and they had quite a temper when they get truly angry. Other than that though, I can't see similarities, but I still say that it symbolised Harry as the leader.

As for Voldemort's part, I'd like again to associate lightning with power. It could probably, on his part, be a symbol of the power he had over Harry with regards to what happened to Harry's life. Whilst Voldemort never truly got to kill Harry and be truly powerful over him, Voldemort managed to change Harry's life by killing his parents, having Hogwarts students doubt him after the murder of Cedric Diggory, and how he managed to make most of Harry's life revolve around him (Voldemort).

• The only thing Harry likes about his appearance is the thin scar shaped like a bolt of lightning on his forehead. Why do you think he likes it? How do you feel about that piece of information?

I think the scar reminded Harry of his parents. In a way, the scar was the only connection he had with his parents before he entered Hogwarts. I honestly feel sad about that piece of information. It is very sad to see how an eleven-year-old boy likes the scar that is greatly connected with his parents' deaths only because it's the only thing that links him with his parents. After all, before entering Hogwarts, I highly doubt anyone telling him that he had his mother's eyes, or his father's hair.

• How did the Dursleys' cruelty contribute to Harry's personality/disposition as a wizard?

Harry, upon entering Hogwarts, could finally have the things he was deprived of when he was with the Dursleys. I believe this contributed to his impulsiveness and his love of adventure and heroic deeds. I think the Dursleys' contribution also manifests itself a lot when Harry and Draco fight. With the Dursleys, it was to his disadvantage whenever he would fight back. It was different with Draco, and I believe it felt good for him to be finally able to stand up for himself.

• Do you think it's better for Harry to know that he was special from the start? Why? Why not?

I do not think so. He had to be humbled by his experiences with the Dursleys, in my opinion. If he had known that he was special from the start and then he suffered from a very humiliating incident after being overconfident, I do not think he would take it well.

• Why did Vernon impose extreme measures just so Harry won't be able to read the letter?

Vernon, I believe, was suffering from paranoia. He had mistreated Harry all his life, and it was apparent how Harry's discovery of his magical powers would enable him to take revenge. He was also a very narrow-minded man. It is apparent from the start how he looked down on wizards and witches, and how it infuriated him to learn that he was related to someone who's one of the "freaks". I see a parallel of this in the Black family's treatment of Squibs and Muggle-borns.

• If you were Harry, would you have immediately made friends with Draco and his gang? Why? Why not?

I do not think so. After all, I would have been greatly reminded of Dudley Dursely every day, and that would be no fun. Also, I think Harry saw from the start how he and Draco would only have lots of disagreements, and how he was better off with Ron, the first fellow Hogwarts student he met who was just as anxious as he was.
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by geewitch on 2011-01-19, 19:29

Also awarding 20 points to Nargles and Snorkacks of Slytherin House. Smile
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by lianne on 2011-01-19, 21:02

tiffy wrote:
Elerrina wrote:

I do wonder though, how she knew where to wait for Dumbledore. How did she know Dumbledore intended to go to the Dursleys'?

I've read somewhere that she got the information from Hagrid. I think she does not know who the Dursleys are and why Dumbledore was there. - Ebook, Chapter 1 page 9. Smile

This was addressed in the book. Dumbledore said to McGonagall that he supposed it was Hagrid who told her where he [Dumbledore] would be. Smile

allanwhistletop wrote:• Why do you think Dumbledore left a note with the baby Harry to inform the Dursleys instead of talking to them personally?
We can only presume that Dumbledore wouldn't want to shock the Dursleys. Describing them in the first book, they are muggles not open to the idea of magic. We can presume that Lily could have told Dumbledore, maybe over butterbeer, about her sister's relative "discomfort" about witchcraft and wizardry, and thus it would be a shock when a man in robes presents them a wizard baby whose parents were killed by a dark wizard.

Nargles and Snorkacks wrote:• Why do you think Dumbledore left a note with the baby Harry to inform the Dursleys instead of talking to them personally?

I think Dumbledore knew how the Dursleys could have refused to take Harry in if he had tried to talk to them personally. He already knew how the Dursleys were not particularly fond of magic, and that their dislike of magic could affect their pity for a relative. Also, they would be able to say that Dumbledore (or some other wizarding family) can take care of Harry. Without his presence they would be more likely to feel pity for Harry because he was just left all alone on the doorstep. I think Dumbledore wanted them to feel this pity for them to at least half-heartedly take Harry in.

Just wanted to add to this. If you'll remember in Deathly Hallows (Again, I hope I'm not preempting the discussion here), it was mentioned that Dumbledore communicated with Petunia when she was just a kid. Perhaps Dumbledore felt that personally talking to the Dursleys, to Petunia especially, would awaken feelings of resentment and jealousy. These feelings would have eclipsed whatever sadness Petunia might have felt over the death of her sister, which wouldn't have helped the cause at all. So the letter had to do.
^
^
Just a followup, do you guys think Petunia did feel sad? Did she mourn the death of her sister? I mean come on! Is she REALLY that cold-hearted? Sad

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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by allanwhistletop on 2011-01-20, 02:15

lianne wrote:

Just wanted to add to this. If you'll remember in Deathly Hallows (Again, I hope I'm not preempting the discussion here), it was mentioned that Dumbledore communicated with Petunia when she was just a kid. Perhaps Dumbledore felt that personally talking to the Dursleys, to Petunia especially, would awaken feelings of resentment and jealousy. These feelings would have eclipsed whatever sadness Petunia might have felt over the death of her sister, which wouldn't have helped the cause at all. So the letter had to do.
^
^
Just a followup, do you guys think Petunia did feel sad? Did she mourn the death of her sister? I mean come on! Is she REALLY that cold-hearted? Sad


Yup, I was afraid to preempt the discussion since it's all about book1... With the Dursleys's reaction with magic including Petunia, we could guess that at least maybe she's not happy when Lily died, but maybe NR (no reaction), maybe just a twinge of guilt perhaps for being estranged...and guessing from the background presented of the Dursleys, informing Petunia even just by a letter that she "inherited" a baby wizard could have eclipsed any kind of sadness she might have felt upon reading the news about her sister's death, what more if a fully dressed wizard appeared, what an uproar it must have been for her!
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by Nargles and Snorkacks on 2011-01-20, 23:10

lianne wrote:
Just a followup, do you guys think Petunia did feel sad? Did she mourn the death of her sister? I mean come on! Is she REALLY that cold-hearted? Sad


I think Petunia did feel sad. I do believe that Petunia still loved her sister deep down, it's just that she was probably too hurt (or jealous) to show her true feelings. If I remember properly, there was a scene in which Petunia was looking at Harry's eyes as if she wanted to say something to him, but decided against it. If she didn't care about her sister any longer I don't think she would have done that.
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by Kay on 2011-04-29, 02:12

I know it's already April, but I just finished rereading SS so I tried answering a few. Very Happy

Why do you think Dumbledore left a note with the baby Harry to inform the Dursleys instead of talking to them personally?

Dumbledore might have guessed that it wouldn't be easy personally explaining everything to the Dursleys. I bet Vernon wouldn't be so happy to be seen having a bearded old man wearing a long purple cloak in his house in the first place. On the other hand, this action of Dumbledore's may be seen as a subtle use of force. I mean, leaving Harry in the doorstep didn't leave the Dursleys much choice, did it? They could have had Harry adopted all right, but Dumbledore knew they were still family and hoped the letter would somehow convince them to keep Harry.

Why did Dumbledore choose to leave Harry with muggles, instead of letting him grow up in the wizarding world?

Since Harry had no other living relatives, I think leaving him with the Dursleys was the obvious choice. Dumbledore also assumed that Harry would eventually learn about the wizarding world when he's old enough. I only have the pdf file so I can't tell the exact page where Dumbledore told McGonagall about the Dursleys explaining everything to Harry. Furthermore, Dumbledore decided it was best for Harry not to know he was famous until he was wise enough to deal with it.

Do you think it was really necessary for Professor McGonagall to stay a cat all day?

I figured this was Rowling's way of introducing Professor McGonagall to the readers. Sitting on a brick wall the entire day disguised as a cat implies McGonagall's austerity. Reading her conversation with Dumbledore, we find out she prefers to learn the facts before taking any further actions. Later on Harry figures she's "not someone to cross". Very Happy
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by gen_excelciosempra on 2011-05-29, 22:04

• Why do you think Dumbledore left a note with the baby Harry to inform the Dursleys instead of talking to them personally?

he thinks that if the dursleys see him personally, they would freak out and not accept harry especially petunia dursley who is a relative of lily.

• Why did Dumbledore choose to leave Harry with muggles, instead of letting him grow up in the wizarding world?

because, if the dark lord finds harry, he will kill him and the prophecy will be ruined...

• Do you think it was really necessary for Professor McGonagall to stay a cat all day?

yes. because its a practice to hide an identity.

• Why do you think Harry's scar was shaped like a lightning bolt?

because of the very strong spell that nearly hit him but her mother's love for him is stronger than the spell so a lightning bolt is given to harry.

• The only thing Harry likes about his appearance is the thin scar shaped like a bolt of lightning on his forehead. Why do you think he likes it? How do you feel about that piece of information?

he likes it because he surely knows that it is the sign of love of her mother.. my opinion is the scar is fantastic.. it is a very fantastic sign of love.

• How did the Dursleys' cruelty contribute to Harry's personality/disposition as a wizard?

harry's mind had implanted him a thought that the dursleys were cruel to him, so he lose respect for the dursleys and it greatly affected his disposition as a wizard..

• Do you think it's better for Harry to know that he was special from the start? Why? Why not?

no. because he could have been boastful like draco malfoy.

• Why did Vernon impose extreme measures just so Harry won't be able to read the letter?

because the dursleys don't like the fate harry will experience if he enrolled in hogwarts. they prevent happening it again like what happened to lily.

• If you were Harry, would you have immediately made friends with Draco and his gang? Why? Why not?

no. because his personality was very awkward. draco only stays strong as long as he is in his gang. so not.
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by loonyphy on 2011-07-10, 19:33

gen_excelciosempra wrote:
• If you were Harry, would you have immediately made friends with Draco and his gang? Why? Why not?

no. because his personality was very awkward. draco only stays strong as long as he is in his gang. so not.

What do you mean "his personality was very awkward? Can you please clarify that? Thanks
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by lianne on 2011-08-07, 21:54

Random thought: You guys think that maybe Dumbledore turned a blind eye to the extreme muggleness of the Dursleys when he left Harry with them because to him, an awful family is still better than no family? I mean, knowing in retrospect how he's been hurting for his own.

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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by dementedlouise on 2011-08-25, 00:45

I think Dumbledore has no choice but to leave Harry talaga to his muggle family. Remember Lily's charm to protect Harry? It will only work as long as Harry (before 17) will continue to regard the Dursleys' house as his home. I'm sure Dumbledore knows how that enchantment works so he whether he likes it or not, he really has to leave Harry with the Dursleys.

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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

Post by ilovedraco on 2011-08-28, 15:55

• Why do you think Dumbledore left a note with the baby Harry to inform the Dursleys instead of talking to them personally?
If Dumbledore talked to the Dursleys personally, they will not accept the request.By sending a letter, they didn't have a choice left.
• Why did Dumbledore choose to leave Harry with muggles, instead of letting him grow up in the wizarding world?
Gossips are famous. Wizarding world surrounds gossips and if Harry grew up there he mightn't not be safe because he might be pressured that a powerful wizard was after him.
• Do you think it was really necessary for Professor McGonagall to stay a cat all day?
Of course. It was like McGonagall was trying to test the Dursleys' character.
• Why do you think Harry's scar was shaped like a lightning bolt?
Some say that a lightning bolt is a sign of evil. I think it is because Tom's evil.
• The only thing Harry likes about his appearance is the thin scar shaped like a bolt of lightning on his forehead. Why do you think he likes it? How do you feel about that piece of information?
He likes it because it is a unique shape to form from a scar. I feel alright for this information.
• How did the Dursleys' cruelty contribute to Harry's personality/disposition as a wizard?
Harry grew up without knowing he is a wizard. That's the good thing the Dursleys did.
• Do you think it's better for Harry to know that he was special from the start? Why? Why not?
No. We don't need to hide his true identity to him. We should tell them all we know about him and what will happen to him.
• Why did Vernon impose extreme measures just so Harry won't be able to read the letter?
He didn't want Harry to know how to work on magic.
• If you were Harry, would you have immediately made friends with Draco and his gang? Why? Why not?
Not. For me, bad friends are bad influence, of course. And we should have friends that are lovable, supportive, understanding, honest, and loyal.
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ilovedraco
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Re: SS: In the Beginning [Chapters 1 to 6]

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