azn_jack_fiend: (Default)
[personal profile] azn_jack_fiend
I just figured out why I never got interested in Harry Potter!  About ten minutes ago, actually.

All right. My family was very anglophile and we lived in the UK for a bit. But my parents were also super major hippies and we sort of roamed around, all over, for many years coachsurfing and living on farms. And I was raised on stories of what horrible horrible hellholes English boarding schools are. My mother told me they were full of awful loneliness and brutal bullying and rape (my parents were always very frank about that sort of stuff). I know this may sound completely incredible, but ever since I was very young, my mother told me over and over again that I should be lucky that I wasn't born into an upper-class English family, because if I was, I would be kicked out of the house at the age of 8 and only allowed home on holidays, and what a horrible cruel anti-child social practice this was and she would never, ever do that to me even if she had the money. To this day I don't know why she was so obsessive on that point; she had a more-or-less privileged childhood in the US but certainly didn't go to a boarding school.

I think for many people, the setting of HP is really what sucked them in. I can empathize with that, coming from the perspective of a childhood Tolkien reader. But the first time I saw the HP books appear, I must have had a kneejerk EWW ENGLISH BOARDING SCHOOL DNW. And besides the setting, nothing else grabbed me afterward.
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azn_jack_fiend

August 2011

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