Queer Bookworm

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Posts tagged "Hermione Granger"



There comes a point where Susan, who was the older girl, is lost to Narnia because she becomes interested in lipstick. She’s become irreligious basically because she found sex. I have a big problem with that.” - JK Rowling

Can we talk about Susan’s fabulous adventures after Narnia? The ones where she wears nylons and elegant blouses when she wants to, and short skirts and bright lipstick when she wants to, and hiking boots and tough jeans and big men’s plaid shirts when she feels like backpacking out into the mountains and remembering what it was to be lost in a world full of terrific beauty— I know her siblings say she stops talking about it, that Susan walks away from the memories of Narnia, but I don’t think she ever really forgot.

I want to read about Susan finishing out boarding school as a grown queen reigning from a teenaged girl’s body. School bullies and peer pressure from children and teachers who treat you like you’re less than sentient wouldn’t have the same impact. C’mon, Susan of the Horn, Susan who bested the DLF at archery, and rode a lion, and won wars, sitting in a school uniform with her eyebrows rising higher and higher as some old goon at the front of the room slams his fist on the lectern. 

Susan living through WW2, huddling with her siblings, a young adult (again), a fighting queen and champion marksman kept from the action, until she finally storms out against screaming parents’ wishes and volunteers as a nurse on the front. She keeps a knife or two hidden under her clothes because when it comes down to it, they called her Gentle, but sometimes loving means fighting for what you care for. 

She’ll apply to a women’s college on the East Coast, because she fell in love with America when her parents took her there before the war. She goes in majoring in Literature (her ability to decipher High Diction in historical texts is uncanny), but checks out every book she can on history, philosophy, political science. She sneaks into the boys’ school across town and borrows their books too. She was once responsible for a kingdom, roads and taxes and widows and crops and war. She grew from child to woman with that mantle of duty wrapped around her shoulders. Now, tossed here on this mundane land, forever forbidden from her true kingdom, Susan finds that she can give up Narnia but she cannot give up that responsibility. She looks around and thinks I could do this better.

I want Susan sneaking out to drink at pubs with the girls, her friends giggling at the boys checking them out from across the way, until Susan walks over (with her nylons, with her lipstick, with her sovereignty written out in whatever language she damn well pleases) and beats them all at pool. Susan studying for tests and bemoaning Aristotle and trading a boy with freckles all over his nose shooting lessons so that he will teach her calculus. Susan kissing boys and writing home to Lucy and kissing girls and helping smuggle birth control to the ladies in her dorm because Susan Pevensie is a queen and she understands the right of a woman to rule over her own body. 

Susan losing them all to a train crash, Edmund and Peter and Lucy, Jill and Eustace, and Lucy and Lucy and Lucy, who Susan’s always felt the most responsible for. Because this is a girl who breathes responsibility, the little mother to her three siblings until a wardrobe whisked them away and she became High Queen to a whole land, ruled it for more than a decade, then came back centuries later as a legend. What it must do to you, to be a legend in the body of a young girl, to have that weight on your shoulders and have a lion tell you that you have to let it go. What is must do to you, to be left alone to decide whether to bury your family in separate ceremonies, or all at once, the same way they died, all at once and without you. What it must do to you, to stand there in black, with your nylons, and your lipstick, and feel responsible for these people who you will never be able to explain yourself to and who you can never save. 

Maybe she dreams sometimes they made it back to Narnia after all. Peter is a king again. Lucy walks with Aslan and all the dryads dance. Maybe Susan dreams that she went with them— the train jerks, a bright light, a roar calling you home. 

Maybe she doesn’t. 

Susan grows older and grows up. Sometimes she hears Lucy’s horrified voice in her head, “Nylons? Lipstick, Susan? Who wants to grow up?”  and Susan thinks, “Well you never did, Luce.” Susan finishes her degree, stays in America (England looks too much like Narnia, too much like her siblings, and too little, all at once). She starts writing for the local paper under the pseudonym Frank Tumnus, because she wants to write about politics and social policy and be listened to, because the name would have made Edmund laugh. 

She writes as Susan Pevensie, too, about nylons and lipstick, how to give a winning smiles and throw parties, because she knows there is a kind of power there and she respects it. She won wars with war sometimes, in Narnia, but sometimes she stopped them before they began.

Peter had always looked disapprovingly on the care with which Susan applied her makeup back home in England, called it vanity. And even then, Susan would smile at him, say “I use what weapons I have at hand,” and not explain any more than that. The boy ruled at her side for more than a decade. He should know better. 

Vain is not the proper word. This is about power. But maybe Peter wouldn’t have liked the word “ambition” any more than “vanity.”

Susan is a young woman in the 50s and 60s. Frank Tumnus has quite the following now. He’s written a few books, controversial, incendiary. Susan gets wrapped up in the civil rights movement, because of course she would. It’s not her first war. All the same, she almost misses the White Witch. Greed is a cleaner villain than senseless hate. She gets on the Freedom Rider bus, mails Mr. Tumnus articles back home whenever there’s a chance, those rare occasions they’re not locked up or immediately threatened. She is older now than she ever was in Narnia. Susan dreams about Telemarines killing fauns. 

Time rolls on. Maybe she falls in love with a young activist or an old cynic. Maybe she doesn’t. Maybe Frank Tumnus, controversial in the moment, brilliant in retrospect, gets offered an honorary title from a prestigious university. She declines and publishes an editorial revealing her identity. Her paper fires her. Three others mail her job offers. 

When Vietnam rolls around, she protests in the streets. Susan understands the costs of war. She has lived through not just the brutal wars of one life, but two. 

Maybe she has children now. Maybe she tells them stories about a magical place and a magical lion, the stories Lucy and Edmund brought home about how if you sail long enough you reach the place where the seas fall off the edge of the world. But maybe she tells them about Cinderella instead, Sleeping Beauty, Rapunzel, except Rapunzel cuts off her own hair and uses it to climb down the tower and escape. The damsel uses what tools she has at hand. 

A lion told her to walk away, and she did. He forbade her magic, he forbade her her own kingdom, so she made her own. 

Susan Pevensie did not lose faith. She found it. 

I have not read the books, just seen the movies and I’ll admit the religion and what I knew they did to Susan was a big part of not reading them. But this? THIS is fantastic.

After I saw the movie I kept asking people about what it would be like to have that, to be a Queen or King and then be a kid and nobody paid it much mind. But it isn’t just going from Queen to kid, it’s going from a powerful and respected Queen to a powerless girl in an age when women aren’t respected or listened to.

And a little part of me wants Susan to have had a daughter, Jean Emmeline Pevensie when she was aged 27 and Jean went to university found a profession and later married a Daniel Granger and when she was 24 gave birth to their daughter Hermione Granger.  Jean didn’t know a lot of her mother’s past, just that something had sparked her as a teenager to fight he fight and be awesome, but not knowing how Susan would take it never told her mother about the magical world and Hermione being a witch.

But one day, one day during the war that Susan did notice and did her best to help out in even as a 69 year old mostly muggle (and saved a lot of lives too) and found out who her granddaughter was. At that moment she couldn’t decide if she was proud to bursting or scared to death and figured she was probably both. Once the war ended she had a good long chat with Hermione who revealed she’d heard of Narnia as one realms next to but not in our own and is a bit flummoxed to realise that she’s the granddaughter of a Queen.

Susan, who has spent her life not talking about Narnia or magic but doing all the cool stuff above (except maybe having come back to the UK after uni) debates about revealing her status to the magical world and decides not to after all, she left that title behind even if she remembers it to the core of her being and in many ways it is still who she IS. She lost it though and she’s accepted it.

One day Hermione takes her shopping in the wizarding world and though she’s accepted her loss Susan sees some robes and dresses that remind her so much of Narnia and her life there with her family she can’t help but buy them. She doesn’t wear them often. Until one day when Hermione has won a victory for the rights of magical beings and Susan goes to the vote and announcement dressed to the nines. And for the first time in years she goes as a Queen because once a King or Queen of Narnia, always a King or Queen of Narnia and that never really left her and these people, these people know enough to recognise there is something there and the magics used to identify her know her to be a Queen. Harry and Ron just roll with it, already knowing, but suddenly all the snobs start sucking up to Hermione because she’s suddenly the granddaughter of a Queen of a magical realm.  

Still, she’s still Susan Pevensie, she writes books and fights for equal rights in the muggle world and supports Hermione doing the same in the magical world. She puts on her lipstick with care and buys clothing that fits just the right way to make sure she looks just so. She talks in a way that invites no crap but somehow opens up those who oppose her and gets them to listen. She’s involved with charities that deal with children forced to fight in wars and does so, so much good in the world.

She may have never been able to return to Narnia, her family may have thought she forgot it all and abandoned it for vanity and daring to have autonomy and she may be the only Pevensie left. But she doesn’t regret it. Because she has forged a path for herself and helped the way for others and she comes to accept that even if she lost Narnia, she is still Queen.

Okay, okay, I’m going to tell you what Hermione sees in Ron.

A trio is a balancing act, right? They’re equalizers of each other. Harry’s like the action, Hermione’s the brains, Ron’s the heart. Hermione has been assassinated in these movies, and I mean that genuinely—by giving her every single positive character trait that Ron has, they have assassinated her character in the movies. She’s been harmed by being made to be less human, because everything good Ron has, she’s been given.

So, for instance: “If you want to kill Harry, you’re going to have to kill me too”—RON, leg is broken, he’s in pain, gets up and stands in front of Harry and says this. Who gets that line in the movie? Hermione.

“Fear of a name increases the fear of the thing itself.” Hermione doesn’t say Voldemort’s name until well into the books—that’s Dumbledore’s line. When does Hermione say it in the movies? Beginning of Movie 2.

When the Devil’s Snare is curling itself around everybody, Hermione panics, and Ron is the one who keeps his head and says “Are you a witch or not?” In the movie, everybody else panics and Hermione keeps her head and does the biggest, brightest flare of sunlight spell there ever was.

So, Hermione—all her flaws were shaved away in the films. And that sounds like you’re making a kick-ass, amazing character, and what you’re doing is dehumanizing her. And it pisses me off. It really does.

In the books, they balance each other out, because where Hermione gets frazzled and maybe her rationality overtakes some of her instinct, Ron has that to back it up; Ron has a kind of emotional grounding that can keep Hermione’s hyper-rationalness in check. Sometimes Hermione’s super-logical nature grates Harry and bothers him, and isn’t the thing he needs even if it’s the right thing, like when she says “You have a saving people thing.” That is the thing that Harry needed to hear, she’s a hundred percent right, but the way she does it is wrong. That’s the classic “she’s super logical, she’s super brilliant, but she doesn’t know how to handle people emotionally,” at least Harry.

So in the books they are this balanced group, and in the movies, in the movies—hell, not even Harry is good enough for Hermione in the movies. No one’s good enough for Hermione in the movies—God isn’t good enough for Hermione in the movies! Hermione is everybody’s everything in the movies.

Harry’s idea to jump on the dragon in the books, who gets it in the movies? Hermione, who hates to fly. Hermione, who overcomes her withering fear of flying to take over Harry’s big idea to get out of the—like, why does Hermione get all these moments?

[John: Because we need to market the movie to girls.]

I think girls like the books, period. And like the Hermione in the books, and like the Hermione in the books just fine before Hollywood made her idealized and perfect. And if they would have trusted that, they would have been just fine.

Would the movies have been bad if she was as awesome as she was in the books, and as human as she was in the books? Would the movies get worse?

She IS a strong girl character. This is the thing that pisses me off. They are equating “strong” with superhuman. To me, the Hermione in the book is twelve times stronger than the completely unreachable ideal of Hermione in the movies. Give me the Hermione in the book who’s human and has flaws any single day of the week.

Here’s a classic example: When Snape in the first book yells at Hermione for being an insufferable know-it-all, do you want to know what Ron says in the book? “Well, you’re asking the questions, and she has to answer. Why ask if you don’t want to be told?” What does he say in the movie? “He’s got a point, you know.” Ron? Would never do that. Would NEVER do that, even before he liked Hermione. Ron would never do that.

Melissa Anelli THROWS IT DOWN about the way Ron and Hermione have been adapted in the movies on the latest episode of PotterCast. Listen here. This glorious rant starts at about 49:00. (via karakamos)

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so yeah i’m inexplicably really into HP this evening?

(via deepspacequeer)


this blog typically only mentions harry potter when discussing criticisms of it, but can i take a moment to talk about hermione granger

this is a girl who finds out that magic is real and she’s a witch and promptly spends the next several months studying in case there’s a test

and, three years later, her greatest fear is still that she’s failed all of her tests and, by implication, will be kicked out of the wizarding world

this is a girl who figures out singlehandedly that nicolas flamel is the one who invented the philosopher’s stone, that the potions puzzle can only be solved by logic, that the monster in the chamber of secrets is a basilisk and that it’s petrifying people AND that carrying around a mirror will protect you from it, that sirius black sent harry that broomstick, that professor lupin is a werewolf, that while severus snape is the worst person ever he’s not actually working for voldemort, that the person who wrote in harry’s 6th year potions book is incredibly sketchy, that godric’s hollow is a terrible place to spend christmas

this is a girl who has despicable slurs thrown at her by the SON OF A KNOWN HATE CRIMINAL when she is TWELVE, this is a girl who is casually and viciously insulted by her potions teacher on her FIRST DAY OF CLASS and again and again afterwards (“i see no difference” when her face is hexed to make her teeth grow out like rabbits’, “insufferable know-it-all”, etc), this is a girl who is literally attacked by an incredibly deadly basilisk because she is a muggle-born (again when she is TWELVE), who is CONTINUALLY in physical danger simply because she happens to be a witch with muggle parents

this is a girl who actively endeavors to end the oppression of others by starting a society to protect the welfare of house-elves; this is a girl who responds to bullying and hatred and discrimination by being the best damn student hogwarts has ever seen; this is a girl who, when she is eleven years old, knows that in desperate times, “kindness and bravery” are more important than getting to one-up your peers academically

this is a girl who erases the fact that her family knows she exists in order to help save the world

in a deeply flawed narrative, hermione granger is fucking flawless

(via screamingcrawfish)

any decent Potterwhovian knows in their hearts that Hermione Granger would literally be the best companion of all time like i can just see it:

"Oh, honestly, Doctor. How many times do i have to tell you that you can’t land the TARDIS inside the grounds of Hogwarts?"


"Don’t ‘well’ me. Have you ever even opened Hogwarts, A History?"

"Actually, no. TARDIS, Time Lord, not magic."

"Hermione, witch, yes magic."

like i haven’t shipped this hard since season one ezria

(via fuchsimeon)


i have a lot of secret hermione headcanons like. she was insufferable at muggle school as well and generally not well liked. she was the girl whose parents were both dentists and she read too many books and tried to talk to people in her class about them but they generally thought she was trying to show off. so when she gets into hogwarts she throws herself into the new culture and reads as many books as her parents will pay for, including her text books and several history books and when her parents refuse to buy the unabridged history of magic and also some legends, she seriously considers hiding out in flourish and blotts so she can just read it in the bookstore. but she wears her robes around the house and sends about forty letters to hogwarts asking questions about the school year and the course load and how the grading scale works and if they’re very sure they’ve told her everything she’s going to need. and her parents are worried about her but they had been already? because she has such a hard time making friends. and they hope she’ll be able to make friends at hogwarts.

the first letter she sends them is full of descriptions of the castle and the sorting and background information on gryffindor and she mentions that she met neville and he’s very sweet, and the classes are so interesting, and she loves them very much! and the next few are also like that and kind of strained. and they suspect (correctly) that she again does not have friends.

a couple weeks into november, she sends them a letter full of complaints about ron’s study habits and how he’s teaching her wizard chess and how both he and harry are very brave but also not very good students. and she tells them about hagrid, who is eight and a half feet tall and the nicest person she has ever met. 

they stop worrying as much until they get a letter at the end of term saying that hermione has broken about 20 school rules and also congratulations your daughter scored over 100% on almost every exam.

(via greatbewilderbeast)



can we just take a moment to imagine little cute six-year-old hermione reading matilda

and peering into this book about a smart, bookish girl who could move things with her mind

and then can you imagine her concentrating very hard on the books on the bookshelf and slowly, slowly, getting them to move


(via jokerchenisdifferent)

i’m reading a rly good post-dh non-epilogue compliant hp fic and it’s making me ship hermione/neville/draco??? i don’t know how i got to this point.


hermione granger the smartest witch of her age

hermione granger who in book two figured out that the thing turning kids into stone and killing other kids off was a giant fucking snake living in the secret fucking basement AND NO ONE HAD DISCOVERED IT IN A THOUSAND YEARS

hermione granger who was so smart and so studious that she traveled back and forth in time to learn everything she could about a world she’d never known about, and that itself was torn apart over whether to treat her as one of their own or as scum

hermione granger who at fourteen discovered and trapped an illegally shapeshifting adult with considerable media sway and blackmailed her remorselessly

hermione granger who at fifteen decided to forge her own brand of justice with cool-headed cunning and subtle leadership “here’s what we have to do to protect ourselves,” she murmurs, drafting plans and strategies, when the law is useless you write your own, as harry takes the lead

hermione granger who was thrown into a world where people like her were reviled and persecuted at the tender age of eleven but learned all its tricks and whims, its secrets and deepest thoughts, who cut it open with the keen knife of intelligence and discipline and learned how to pluck each nerve and make it sing for her

*:・゚✧*:・゚✧ HERMIONE *:・゚✧*:・゚✧ GRANGER *:・゚✧*:・゚✧

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Jessica Sula as Hermione Granger

Jessica Sula as Hermione Granger

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