Synopses & Reviews
A philosophical exploration of the entire seven-book Harry Potter
Harry Potter has been heralded as one of the most popular book series of all time and the philosophical nature of Harry, Hermione, and Ron's quest to rid the world of its ultimate evil is one of the many things that make this series special. The Ultimate Harry Potter and Philosophy covers all seven titles in J.K. Rowling's groundbreaking series and takes fans back to Godric's Hollow to discuss life after death, to consider what moral reasoning drove Harry to choose death, and to debate whether Sirius Black is a man or a dog.
With publication timed to coincide with the release of the movie Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Part 1), this book will be the definitive guide for all fans looking to appreciate the series on a deeper level.
- Covers a range of intriguing topics such as the redemption of Severus Snape, the power of love, and destiny in the wizarding world
- Gives you a new perspective on Harry Potter characters, plot lines, and themes
- Makes a perfect companion to the Harry Potter books and movies
Packed with interesting ideas and insights, The Ultimate Harry Potter and Philosophy is an ideal companion for anyone interested in unraveling the subtext and exploring the greater issues at work in the story.
Is it always wrong to use a love potion?
Is death something to be feared . . . or "mastered"?
What can Severus Snape teach us about the possibility of redemption?
Is love the most powerful magic of all?
J. K. Rowling's wildly popular Harry Potter books may appear to be simple children's tales on the surface, but like Hogwarts, they conceal many hidden chambers, trapdoors, and perplexing secrets. Drawing on all seven books in the Harry Potter series, The Ultimate Harry Potter and Philosophy offers a powerful brew of insights about good and evil, love, death, power, sacrifice, and hope. Is it true, as Dumbledore says, that our choices reveal far more about us than our abilities do? Is there an afterlife, and what might it be like? Here's a Pensieve for your thoughts. So take a healthy slug of Baruffio's Brain Elixir and join Bassham's Army of talented philosophers in exploring the mind-stretching deeper questions of the Potter books and films.
To learn more about the Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture series, visit www.andphilosophy.com
BLACKWELL PHILOSOPHY AND POP CULTURE SERIES
This book has not been approved, licensed, or sponsored by any entity or person involved in creating or producing Harry Potter, the book series, or films.
Exploring J.R.R. Tolkien's "The Hobbit" is an insightful companion volume to the original work, designed to bring a thorough and unique new reading of The Hobbit to a general audience. Corey Olsen, host of the popular podcast "The Tolkien Professor," takes readers on a compelling, in-depth tour of Tolkien's novel, illuminating the secrets and stories behind the characters within the enchanting prelude to The Lord of the Rings.
"An admirable and thought-provoking consideration of the underlying themes of The Hobbit, following the there-and-back-again progress from its famous first line on through to Bilbo's return home at the story's end." -- Douglas A. Anderson, author of The Annotated Hobbit The Hobbit
is one of the most widely read and best-loved books of the twentieth century. Now Corey Olsen takes readers deep within the text to uncover its secrets and delights.
Exploring J.R.R. Tolkiens “The Hobbit” is a fun, thoughtful, and insightful companion volume designed to bring a thorough and original new reading of this great work to a general audience. Professor Corey Olsen takes readers on an in-depth journey through The Hobbit chapter by chapter, revealing the stories within the story: the dark desires of dwarves and the sublime laughter of elves, the nature of evil and its hopelessness, the mystery of divine providence and human choice, and, most of all, the transformation within the life of Bilbo Baggins. Exploring J.R.R. Tolkiens “The Hobbit” is a book that will make The Hobbit come alive for readers as never before.
About the Author
is chair of the Philosophy Department and a professor of philosophy at King's College in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. He is coeditor of the forthcoming The Hobbit and Philosophy
and has coedited The Lord of the Rings and Philosophy, The Chronicles of Narnia and Philosophy,
and Basketball and Philosophy.
WILLIAM IRWIN is a professor of philosophy at King's College in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. He originated the philosophy and popular culture genre of books as coeditor of the bestselling The Simpsons and Philosophy and has overseen recent titles, including Batman and Philosophy, House and Philosophy, and Alice in Wonderland and Philosophy.
Table of Contents
Foreword by Tom Morris.
Acknowledgments: Some House Points I'd Like to Make.
Introduction: Harry Potter and the Enchantment of Philosophy.
PART ONE The Horcrux of the Matter: Destiny, Identity, and the Soul.
1 The Soul in Harry Potter (Scott Sehon).
2 Sirius Black: Man or Dog? (Eric Saidel).
3 Destiny in the Wizarding World (Jeremy Pierce).
PART TWO The Most Powerful Magic of All.
4 Choosing Love: The Redemption of Severus Snape (Catherine Jack Deavel and David Paul Deavel).
5 Love Potion No. 9¾ (Gregory Bassham).
6 Harry Potter, Radical Feminism, and the Power of Love (Anne Collins Smith).
PART THREE Potterwatch: Freedom and Politics.
7 Patriotism, House Loyalty, and the Obligations of Belonging (Andrew P. Mills).
8 Dumbledore's Politics (Beth Admiraal and Regan Lance Reitsma).
9 Dumbledore, Plato, and the Lust for Power (David Lay Williams and Alan J. Kellner).
PART FOUR The Room of Requirement: A Potter Potpourri.
10 Is Dumbledore Gay? Who's to Say? (Tamar Szabó Gendler).
11 Choices vs. Abilities: Dumbledore on Self-Understanding (Gregory Bassham).
12 The Magic of Personal Transformation (S. Joel Garver).
13 Just in Your Head? J. K. Rowling on Separating Reality from Illusion (John Granger with Gregory Bassham).
14 A Pensieve for Your Thoughts? Harry Potter and the Magic of Memory (Amy Kind).
15 A Hogwarts Education: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (Gregory Bassham).
PART FIVE Beyond the Veil: Death, Hope, and Meaning.
16 The Real Secret of the Phoenix: Moral Regeneration through Death (Charles Talia).
17 Beyond Godric's Hollow: Life after Death and the Search for Meaning (Jonathan L. Walls and Jerry L. Walls).
18 Why Harry and Socrates Decide to Die: Virtue and the Common Good (Michael W. Austin).
Contributors: The Hogwarts (for Muggles) Faculty.
The Marauder's Index.