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Author Topic: Chapter Twenty Two - Owl Post Again  (Read 1228 times)

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May 01, 2014, 09:38:50 PM

JaneMarple9

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Chapter Twenty-two: Owl Post Again
(Chap Summary by twiddlethosedials )
Fan Art by mjOboe


OK, you can exhale now - they made it back to the hospital wing. Snape is understandably upset to find Black missing - and blames pretty much everyone and everything in the process. Lupin resigns now that it’s been let slip that he’s got a furry little problem. Harry gets back his Cloak and the Marauder’s Map. Dumbledore reassures him that he found his father within himself. On the train home, a fluffy little owl arrives with a message from Sirius - he’s fine, Harry’s got permission to visit Hogsmeade, the Firebolt came from Sirius and the owl is for Ron.

A few questions to get you started:
1) Why is Snape so insistent Harry had something to do with the evening’s events? How does he know?

2) James’s Animagus form is a stag... so is Harry’s Patronus. Obviously it connects them, but why a stag? What’s significant about the choice of animal?

3) What’s your favorite event from the book? Your least favorite? Why?



"There's nothing better than a good friend, except a good friend with a really big library"
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May 02, 2014, 09:24:06 PM
Reply #1

roonwit

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1) Why is Snape so insistent Harry had something to do with the evening’s events? How does he know?
I don't think he does know, he just assumes it. We see a bit of that at the start of the previous chapter, when he suggests of Harry that
Quote
any other student would be suspended - at the very least - for leading his friends into such danger
whereas it was actually very much a team effort, with Hermione leading as much as Harry in getting to Hagrid's cabin, were forced by circumstance to go along the Whomping WIllow, and in the time turner trip she is mostly in control, stopping Harry from interfering and messing up the past.
I think Snape sees Harry as chief troublemaker and thus blames him for anything unexplained that goes wrong where Harry could possibly be involved.
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May 03, 2014, 01:40:15 PM
Reply #2

siena

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Gosh, there are so many great moments it's hard to choose ! But I suppose the best must be Sirius and Buckbeak flying off together. It is very powerful - Sirius could just about squeeze through the window and then they were off into the darkness. Sirius struggling to find the right words to thank Harry and Hermione was very emotional too. The whole scene is such a relief - the way the story went before Rowling really made the reader believe that Buckbeak was executed (the unmistakable sound of an ax and Hermione saying: They did it.) and that Sirius would suffer a terrible fate after all he went through.

I love the moment when Hagrid finds out his beloved Beaky escaped ! He must have been so overwhelmed ! And Dumbledore saying How extraordinary! and then demanding a strong cup of tea or a large brandy  ;D. It is just such a relief.

But there were other, smaller moments as well: Hermione finally managing to say sorry about Scabbers to Ron, after Ron declared he would help her looking up stuff for Hagrid. Sorry really seemed to have been the hardest word for stubborn Hermione, and that she could finally overcome her pride was nice to see.

I love Ron making peace with Crookshanks in the end as well - trusting him enough to let him sniff out the little owl  :P

Harry casting the powerful Patronus that drives off all the dementors is very powerful as well. It is more than saving lives though - it is finding his confidence and inner belief in himself through learning that his father is still very much with him. The dead we loved will never leave us is what Dumbledore explains. That must be the most powerful message in the book.
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May 13, 2014, 05:55:32 PM
Reply #3

HealerOne

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1) Why is Snape so insistent Harry had something to do with the evening’s events? How does he know?
I assume that Snape realized Lupin and Sirius had convinced Harry that it was Peter, aka The Rat, that was the real culprit. I think Snape could not justify this in his version of who Sirius and the Marauders were. His feelings seemed to have been that this group of boys/men had never changed from who they were when he knew them way back in his school days. (Perhaps because he had not changed all that much?) I must admit that at this point in the story I was a bit confused as to why Snape was so positive about this assumption that Harry was the one that was responsible. Later when we get to see Snape's Worst Memory it becomes more evident why he was convinced that James' son would be the one to dash that long held theory.


2) James’s Animagus form is a stag... so is Harry’s Patronus. Obviously it connects them, but why a stag? What’s significant about the choice of animal?
I did a little research about Stag and their symbolism. According to one medieval story the stag is the enemy of the snake! It lures the snake from its hole with its breath and then once the snake exits its hole, the stag tramples it to death. This appears to be an allegory for Christ who defeats evil. (http://bestiary.ca/beasts/beast162.htm)

Some of the  symbolic meanings associated with the deer are: Love, Grace, Peace, Beauty, Fertility, Humility, Swiftness, Regrowth, Creativity, Spirituality, Abundance, Benevolence and Watchfulness. (http://www.whats-your-sign.com/animal-symbolism-deer.html)

In Anglo-Saxon England the Stag was revered as a noble and proud animal and was a symbol for a kings power. In Celtic tradition the stag was considered a magical shape shifter. Another quality about the deer is that their antlers can be regrown and this then makes the deer a symbol for life regeneration. The antlers could also be seen like the branches of trees, thus associated with families and fertility. Others saw in the antlers how heavenly light was radiated. Myths in several areas of the world include the Stag carrying the sun in its antlers.

Here is a quote from a druid information website (http://www.druidry.org/library/animals/stags-and-deer):
"The Stag stands for solitary nobility, honour and a strong commitment to the protection of their herd. The Stag is a symbol of protection and sexuality. They are extremely devoted to the care, and creation, of children. Stags focus on the balance of law and are rigid in their thinking on the issues of justice."


 
3) What’s your favorite event from the book? Your least favorite? Why?
I think the whole learning about how to do the Patronus Charm along with Harry's discovery of the love and sacrifice of both his parents - but especially his mother - were quite moving for me. I was moved also by Harry's struggle with wanting to hold onto the voices of his parents vs learning to stop them. A struggle we all can relate to in some way I am sure.
« Last Edit: May 15, 2014, 04:57:58 AM by HealerOne »
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May 13, 2014, 06:49:26 PM
Reply #4

siena

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I assume that Snape realized Lupin and Sirius had convinced Harry that it was Peter, aka The Rat, that was the real culprit. I think Snape could not justify this in his version of who Sirius and the Marauders were. His feelings seemed to have been that this group of boys/men had never changed from who they were when he knew them way back in his school days. (Perhaps because he had not changed all that much?) I must admit that at this point in the story I was a bit confused as to why Snape was so positive about this assumption that Harry was the one that was responsible. Later when we get to see Snape's Worst Memory it becomes more evident why he was convinced that James' son would be the one to dash that long held theory.


I think that Snape simply has a sixth sense concerning Harry. He just knows. Also, Snape might not know about the Time Turner, but he does know about the Cloak - and he just figures that it is a powerful tool to aid Harry. As for the twist of the story - obviously he refused to listen to Sirius, Lupin and the trio and then he was knocked out and couldn't see for himself that Peter was still alive. I said before and I say it here again that Snape should really have at least listened to the story. This is a flaw and I'm not going to deny it. However, he did not and therefore did not see proof of Peter being alive. And I have to say without proof it is a very,very unlikely story. His version - that Black confunded Harry and Hermione - does sound much more convincing for someone who didn't see the truth. I am wondering if there was possibly a way of finding out by magical means if Harry and Hermione really had been confunded? But even if it had been obvious they hadn't been under the influence, it is doubtful if two childrens' accounts would have been taken as proof. It is due to Dumbledore's deep trust in Harry that he listened to them. Snape doesn't have this trust.

I think Sirius, Harry and Hermione should have been made to take some Veratiserum. As simple as that.

As for comment about Peter being the culprit not fitting into Snape's concept of the Marauders: I think he thought ill of all of the Marauders as we learn, so I don't think it would have particularly shaken his concept. However, as all evidence - and the fact that Sirius risked to kill Snape at the age of 16 - pointed towards Black, there wasn't any reason for him to believe otherwise.

As for Snape - as you (Healer One) put it in question - maybe not changing all that much - this is a very simplified view taken into account only the events in PoA I hope. Otherwise I'd have a lot to point out to the contary. However, let's talk about change - do you think Sirius changed all that much ? Still the same prejudices against Snape I should think, and not even an ounce of regret concerning his actions at the age of 16: Serves him right - this is what Sirius has to say about the incident, now, more than a decade later.

I find it interesting how much people critise Snape for - apparantly- not changing, while other characters can get away with still holding old prejudices.
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May 13, 2014, 10:58:01 PM
Reply #5

roonwit

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1) Why is Snape so insistent Harry had something to do with the evening’s events? How does he know?
I assume that Snape realized Lupin and Sirius had convinced Harry that it was Peter, aka The Rat, that was the real culprit. I think Snape could not justify this in his version of who Sirius and the Marauders were.

Of course Snape probably wouldn't believe in Peter at all and assume Scabbers was just an ordinary rat and all the talk of animagi was just fantasy, as otherwise he would have to accept that at least part of Lupin and Sirius' story was true.
I think Sirius, Harry and Hermione should have been made to take some Veratiserum. As simple as that.
Veritaserum can be beaten, and Harry and Hermione would presumably just repeat what they had been confunded to believe. So if Sirius is well prepared he could ensure that what was said under veritaserum supported his version. I imagine this is what Snape would argue if it was ever put to the test.
But the real problem is that the Ministry have no interest in finding the truth because they believe they already know it, and Sirius would would require indisputable evidence, such as producing Peter, to get them to listen.
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May 14, 2014, 02:00:36 AM
Reply #6

siena

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Veritaserum can be beaten, and Harry and Hermione would presumably just repeat what they had been confunded to believe. So if Sirius is well prepared he could ensure that what was said under veritaserum supported his version. I imagine this is what Snape would argue if it was ever put to the test.


I had to think about that for a while I have to admit, but you're right. I'm just wondering now why Dumbledore trusted the Veritaserum when he gave it to Barty Crouch Junior - did he just believe it worked because Crouch's story corresponded to Harry's account ?
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May 14, 2014, 08:00:42 PM
Reply #7

roonwit

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I had to think about that for a while I have to admit, but you're right. I'm just wondering now why Dumbledore trusted the Veritaserum when he gave it to Barty Crouch Junior - did he just believe it worked because Crouch's story corresponded to Harry's account ?
I do have the following quote in mind from Jo's previous website version.
Quote
Veritaserum plays a big part in finding out the truth from Mad-Eye Moody in book four. Why then is it not used for example in the trials mentioned in the same book? It would be much easier in solving problems like whether Sirius Black was guilty or not?

Veritaserum works best upon the unsuspecting, the vulnerable and those insufficiently skilled (in one way or another) to protect themselves against it. Barty Crouch had been attacked before the potion was given to him and was still very groggy, otherwise he could have employed a range of measures against the Potion - he might have sealed his own throat and faked a declaration of innocence, transformed the Potion into something else before it touched his lips, or employed Occlumency against its effects. In other words, just like every other kind of magic within the books, Veritaserum is not infallible. As some wizards can prevent themselves being affected, and others cannot, it is an unfair and unreliable tool to use at a trial.

Sirius might have volunteered to take the potion had he been given the chance, but he was never offered it. Mr. Crouch senior, power mad and increasingly unjust in the way he was treating suspects, threw him into Azkaban on the (admittedly rather convincing) testimony of many eyewitnesses. The sad fact is that even if Sirius had told the truth under the influence of the Potion, Mr. Crouch could still have insisted that he was using trickery to render himself immune to it.
Barty Crouch Jr. had no time to prepare, and didn't expect to be in the situation he found himself in (if he did he would have some usable polyjuice ready - presumably planning to slip away on the pretense of looking for Harry, prepare some more in private, or have the real Moody turn up dead), so he wouldn't have any defence against veritaserum ready. In fact there probably wasn't much point in doing so anyway as if he was suspected enough to be questioned, Dumbledore and others would probably find the truth by investigation in any case.
« Last Edit: May 14, 2014, 08:06:25 PM by roonwit »
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May 14, 2014, 11:45:38 PM
Reply #8

siena

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Thank you very much for posting this, roonwit  :thumbup: - it is most interesting! It shows again that Rowling wanted to emphasize that sadly, magic doesn't  magically provide solutions for truth finding - it is just as a fragile undertaking in the magical world as it is in the Muggle world  ... :(
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May 17, 2014, 01:33:04 AM
Reply #9

siena

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But the real problem is that the Ministry have no interest in finding the truth because they believe they already know it, and Sirius would would require indisputable evidence, such as producing Peter, to get them to listen.

I was just thinking of something concerning this - and I think it was you, HealerOne, who raised this issue first - why is it that Fudge as the Minister of Magic - the magical equivalent to the Muggle Prime Minister - has the authority to be the final judge in legal matters ? This is not normally within the authority of the Head of State, but would be governed under law enforcement. In GoF, we see Barty Crouch Senior as Head of Magical Law Enforcement a decade or so ago  - so he would have had the authority at that time.  But who would be in that position at the time of PoA ? Emilia Bones maybe ? Why wouldn't that person in charge have been called upon ?? Why has Cornelius Fudge the absolute authority in the matter  :what:
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May 18, 2014, 12:00:01 AM
Reply #10

roonwit

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I was just thinking of something concerning this - and I think it was you, HealerOne, who raised this issue first - why is it that Fudge as the Minister of Magic - the magical equivalent to the Muggle Prime Minister - has the authority to be the final judge in legal matters ? This is not normally within the authority of the Head of State, but would be governed under law enforcement. In GoF, we see Barty Crouch Senior as Head of Magical Law Enforcement a decade or so ago  - so he would have had the authority at that time.  But who would be in that position at the time of PoA ? Emilia Bones maybe ? Why wouldn't that person in charge have been called upon ?? Why has Cornelius Fudge the absolute authority in the matter  :what:
I think the ultimate judge in legal matters is the Wizengamot. The Minister does seem to be able to some things, such as sending Hagrid to Azkaban and examine the items left in Dumbledore's will, but I think he is ultimately accountable to the Wizengamot - Barty Crouch Senior might have been as well - though I think they had enough influence for their decisions not to be challenged.
However I don't see Fudge as deciding anything major in PoA - it was the Ministry that the decided Sirius could get the dementor's kiss, and The Committee for the Disposal of Dangerous Creatures that decided Buckbeak's fate. He does seem to decide that Harry shouldn't be punished for blowing up his aunt, but that might have been due to using his influence as Minister rather than a formal responsibility.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2014, 12:04:22 AM by roonwit »
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May 31, 2014, 08:03:50 PM
Reply #11

ginginkat

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My favorite part of the book is that Harry begins to learn about his past through Remus and Sirius.  He finds out his parents loved him and had friends that now care for him.  He knows he is not alone; he has a godfather who only wants the best for his future.  He learns somewhat of the relationship between James, Lily, Remus and Sirius.  With Remus and Sirius knowledge, Harry realizes he truly belongs to the wizarding world.

 :train:
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June 12, 2014, 04:26:44 PM
Reply #12

HealerOne

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To add to what we have talked about in this chapter was DD's questioning Harry:  "Do you think the Dead we loved ever truly leave us? You think that we don't recall them more clearly than ever in times of great trouble? Your father is alive in you, Harry, and shows himself most plainly when you have need of him." This again revisits what DD said in PS "...Love as powerful as your mother's for you leaves a mark. Not a scar, no visible sign ... to have been loved so deeply, even though the person who loved us is gone, will give us some protection forever. It is in your very skin." This message is very powerful and I don't think it can be appreciated by a young reader as deeply as it is by the more mature readers. As we go through the trials of life - like Harry did - we begin to understand the power of these words more and more. We are shaped by those that love and protect us, and even though they may not be alive, they still influence who we are. Love is powerful and transcends death.

One other thing that I'd like to point out - and that makes this book such a great example of JKR's writing - is the 'ring format' she uses. She begins the book with Owl Post and she ends it with Owl Post Again. As I stated before, the first chapter's owl post is symbolic of how the friendship with Harry, Ron and Hermione support each other during their journey through this book; the owl post in the last chapter continues that, along with Harry finding further support in his life journey with his godfather, Sirius. I love how Sirius bequeaths: to Harry, the independence needed for him to enjoy Hogsmeade; and to Ron the small post owl so that he has a substitute for his rat. Even Crookshanks is accepted into the friendship circle -to the delight of Hermione - by being the one Ron depends on to pass judgement on the little owl as being a friend - not an enemy. 

This ring format is present in all her books, but it is most obvious in this one. I see this book as having the tightest plot structure and that is why so many feel this book not only was the turning point in loving this series, but the turning point in JKR's acceptance by many as a great writer.
« Last Edit: June 17, 2014, 11:26:45 PM by HealerOne »
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