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J.K. Rowling’s Allegorical Depiction Of Despise And Humility Toward Fame

2546 words - 10 pages

“Fame is a fickle friend, Harry”, a quote by J.K. Rowling in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. In this quote, Rowling is eluding to the idea that fame is volatile, that it can change for the worse in a second. She recognizes this and is humble about her fame, using it in a way that betters the community instead of herself. Throughout her works, she presents a set of morals about fame endowed in the beloved character Harry Potter, while also creating a sense of despise toward fame itself. The set of morals presented is a set that is representative of her, reflecting what she learned to value as she emerged from a destitute single mother to one of the richest and renowned people in the world. The characteristics of Harry and her other characters, along with the aura of fame inherent in her books, is parallel to Rowling’s own traits. This will be exemplified by instances in the books as well as events of her own life, thus proving that she writes allegorically in a way depicting her own sense of humility and despise toward fame.
In order to prove that Rowling does in fact create a set of works corresponding to her own beliefs in the sense of modesty as well as uncomfortableness with fame, first there must be a critical conversation presented to display that there is discussion amongst professionals surrounding the idea that Rowling has done this. Next, research will be presented showing the nature of humility that she has toward fame. Proceeding, a literary analysis of her works, which will consist of the Harry Potter series and The Cuckoo’s Calling which can then be used to exemplify the parallelism between herself and her works.
Critics of Rowling’s The Cuckoo’s Calling appear to be wrapped up in the idea that she wrote the book originally under a pseudonym. There were only a few reviews on it before her secret was revealed, while all critics thereafter have mixed critical receptions about the book. However, the very idea that the book was written under a pseudonym represents the idea that Rowling doesn’t want to use her fame to make her new series succeed (Stewart). Every critic on the book mentions this and focuses on the fact that she this in an attempt to mask her identity, most likely to avoid previous bias attached to her fame.
A critic from The Slate Book Review writes, “If a character expresses disdain for journalists, that’s code for readers to like him. The only thing more soulless than the desire for lucre, Rowling implies, is the grist that feeds these vultures: the desire for fame” (Waldman). They recognize the idea that she writes about fame in a distasteful way and it appears to be a prominent feature to be able to relate to the author and read the book in the intended way.
From The Guardian, another critic writes that Lula is "one of the most photographed women in the world" and may, Diana-like, have been hounded to death by the pressure of celebrity and attention”. They continue by stating that Rowling has an “animus...

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