Harry Potter is a fascinating tale of sorcerers, wands, broomsticks, dragons, and magic. The story begins with a young boy named Harry Potter who lives at number four Privit Drive, Surray, England. His journey begins after the death of his parents at the hands of the evil Lord Voldemort. Harry learns of his past and his future as a wizard from Hagrid, the keeper of keys and grounds at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. He travels to Hogwarts where he learns spells and enchantments, makes new friends, finds enemies, and discovers fantastic secretes. J.K. Rowling weaves a web of impeccable storytelling with this critically acclaimed novel. In the tale of Harry Potter imagery, symbolism, and motif take central focus.
Symbolism is one of the key literary aids in telling the story of Harry Potter. Platform nine and three quarters, the train station from which Harry's adventures begin, could be attributed to Harry symbolically and literally “leaving a troublesome world behind and venturing forth into a fantastic new one.” (Anson “The Trouble With Harry”). The platform is symbolic of a transition, a deliverance from evil and suffering into peace, excitement, happiness, and new horizons. The platform is shrouded in mystery. When Harry first arrives at the train station, he asks a nearby conductor where he can find the oddly numbered platform. The conductor thinks Harry is making a joke, because one knows where it is unless they are a wizard. “But Hagrid, there's no such thing, is there?” (Rowling 89). It is lucky for Harry that he stumbles upon another wizard family on their way to the platform. They show him where the secret platform is hidden.
The broomstick, used as transportation by witches and wizards, could also be considered symbolic. “This was wonderful, natural, to fly.” (Rowling 183). After countless years of being put down by his only living relatives that took him in when his parents died, Harry finally discovers something at which he excels. Flying is his natural talent, and symbolic of his first triumph. The first time Harry takes flight is to defend a fellow student being bullied by Harry's enemy, Draco Malfoy. Malfoy steals a treasured possession from Harry's fellow student, and threatens to throw it on the roof of the castle where it would more than likely be lost forever. Harry intercepts the treasured possession midair after a fifty foot dive. A teacher sees this event occur, and recommends that Harry should join the school's Quidditch team, a team that plays games involving broomsticks, quaffles, and bludgers. It is symbolic that Harry's aid of a fellow student in distress secures him a position on the sporting team. “Broomsticks are cool, I mean who wouldn't want to fly.” (Howe “Sorcerer's Stone”). Flying is an act many of us have dreamed of. It seems only fitting that Harry should be compensated with the wonderful experience of flight after suffering such a depressing childhood.
The Wand, used by every witch and...