Harry Potter Essay

2599 Words 11 Pages
Harry Potter

A young, scrawny boy who wears horn-rimmed glasses and has a scar on his forehead has catapulted into the hearts of millions of readers, young and old alike. This same boy has generated nationwide controversy over censorship versus freedom of speech. In particular, the community of Zeeland, Michigan has banned reading aloud from Harry Potter and required written parental permission to check the book out from the school library. Although the Zeeland community as well as other segments of the population claim that the Harry Potter books should be censored because they believe wizardry is a dark and malignant reality, Harry Potter should be made available to all children because he reinforces a sense of good
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China, not known for its liberal policy on literature, has allowed 600,000 boxed sets of the first three books in the series to be printed. This is the largest amount of any fiction ever released by the People's Literature Publishing House since the Communist party came into power in 1949 (Gray 116). Clearly, Harry Potter is a universal phenomenon.

Despite this unprecedented wave of popularity, the Harry Potter books have topped the list of the most challenged books for the second year in a row, according to the American Library Association and the Office of Intellectual Freedom ("ALA" 2). Parents are fearful of the alleged occult or satanic theme and the emphasis on witchcraft. The Holy Family Catholic School in Rockford, Illinois banned Harry Potter because of the positive light in which witchcraft is portrayed, as did the Rockford Christian School, which is Protestant ("Censorship Watch" 17). These adults believe that witchcraft is a real and dangerous menace, much as the misguided people of Salem did. These people provide proof for their belief in witchcraft in part because anyone interested in witchcraft may evidently log on to the internet and make an inquiry of AskJeeves.com (Komschlies 113). It is questionable, however, that the ability to learn about witchcraft on the internet validates the reality of brewing potions or flying on broomsticks, which is a part of the Hogwart's

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