The Harry Potter books have become ubiquitous early texts for children, and are also a popular choice for many adults. Potter-mania has expanded to become a significant cultural phenomenon complete with a feature film and a wide range of paraphernalia. However, there has been little critical attention devoted to these books and the cultural phenomenon surrounding them. Containing powerful, thought-provoking literary themes as well as portrayals of social and cultural normalcy, the Potter books cumulatively serve as a powerful form of social text and deserve serious critical attention. Elizabeth Heilman brings together scholars from various disciplines to provide literary, cultural, sociological, and psychological examinations of the Harry Potter books as both cultural product and social text. DISCLAIMER: This book is not authorized, approved, licensed, or endorsed by J.K. Rowling, Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc., or anyone associated with the Harry Potter books or movies.
Table of Contents
Introduction: Harry Potter across Theoretical and Disciplinary Boundaries Part I: Cultural Studies Perspectives 1. Pottermania: Good, Clean Fun or Cultural Hegemony? 2. Magic, Technoculture, and Becoming Human 3. Controversial Content in Children's Literature: Is Harry Potter Harmful to Children? Part II: Reader Response and Interpretive Perspectives 4. Ways of Reading Harry Potter: Multiple Narratives for Multiple Readers 5. Reading Harry Potter with Navajo Eyes 6. Transfiguring Harry's World: Children Co-authoring Hogwarts Part III: Literary Perspectives: The Hero, Myth and Genre 7. Harry Potter - a Return to the Romantic Hero 8. Generic Fusion and the Mosaic of Harry Potter 9. Wizardly Initiations: Moral, Familial, and Social Part IV: Critical and Sociological Perspectives 10. Comedy, Conflict, and Community: Home and Family in Harry Potter II. The Seeker of Secrets: Images of Learning, Knowing and Schooling 12. Blue Wizards and Pink Witches: Expressions of Gender Identity and Power 13. Images of the Privileged Insider and Outcast Outsider 14. The Civic Leadership of Harry Potter: Agency, Ritual, and Schooling
Elizabeth E. Heilman is Asociate Professor of teacher education at Michigan State University.