Hermione Granger is one of the Harry Potter’s best friends in the Harry Potter book and movie series. Hermione is a muggle born wizard (has non-magical parents) and is an extremely intelligent and resourceful young heroin. She is portrayed as an independent and strong young woman throughout the series. Hermione is often the character who saves the day using her knowledge and ingenuity. At the start of the series she is unfazed by other peoples opinion about her and she is dedicated to her studies. With that being said as time goes on throughout the series Hermione is portrayed differently. On occasion she is portrayed as over emotional, weak, a sexual object, and foolish. This portrayal is very conflicting with her overall character’s personality and development. In my opinion Hermione is a great role model for all young girl. She shows that young women can be smart, strong, independant, and clever (also beautiful). With this in mind I will be looking at two scenes from the Harry potter series that analyzes Hermione with a feminist criticism view. Barry states “The representation of women in literature, then, was felt to be one of the most important forms of ‘socialisation’, since it provided the role models which indicated to women, and men, what constituted
acceptable versions of the ‘feminine’ and legitimate feminine goals and aspirations” in his novelBeginning Theory.
In the fourth movie/book there is a Yule Ball that takes place at Hermione’s School, Hogwarts. The Yule Ball has students from three different schools that are all partaking in the Triwizard tournament. At this ball Hermione is shown entering from a grand stair case. She pauses at the top of the stair case and as she cascades down the stairs everyone in the entire ball room turns to look at her. Harry and his other friend Ron turn to look Hermione and their jaws practically drop to the floor. For the first time Ron and Harry see Hermione dresses up and decked out with make up. During this time both boys see Hermione in a different light, rather than seeing her as their smart and intelligent friend they see her as a sexual being. In the perspective of the viewer/ reader the past reputation of Hermione fades and she suddenly becomes a sex object for men to look at. In this scene Hermione is seen as what is traditionally portrayed as an acceptable version of a woman. She is viewed as beautiful and sexual rather than smart and clever (smart and clever describe her character much better).
In the 6th book/movie Hermione cries over her friend Ron after seeing another girl kiss him. In the past Hermione has not been overly emotional and has shown little to no romantic interest in Ron. However all of a sudden Hermione is overcome with emotions after watching another girl kiss the guy she is apparently interested in. Traditionally women are shown as more emotional than men, they are often shown as overly emotional. In this scene Hermione falls victim to that stereotype. Hermione has experienced loss, tremendous fear, and trauma and has shown limited emotions in all those occasions. However a boy apparently can causes her to burst out in tears. A typically strong independent woman is disrespected by being shown as weak and too emotional.