MuggleNet Academia: Medieval Motifs

Lakehead University Professor Rhonda Dubec joins, Keith Hawk, myself and two MuggleNet staffers to discuss the Medieval Motifs in Harry Potter, a class that she teaches live in Thunder Bay, Ontario, and online via her university’s distance education program. We all agreed during this animated conversation that we wish very much that the course were available to those South of the Border — as I think you will, too! Tune in and let me know what you think.


  1. Louise M. Freeman says

    Great show… thanks for the shout-out for the Divergent stuff.

  2. Margot Robinson says

    If Dr Dubec ever writes a book about this topic, I would be happy to buy it. This was a look at the subject matter in a way that I didn’t know about.

  3. Beverly Bradley says

    Loved listening to this discussion/presentation. I second the idea of offering this course on Coursera, iTunesU, or however, to go “south of the border.” On a side note, there was a discussion between Prof. Dubec and Aaron about Referentiality and Music. That sent me down the rabbit hole of Google and immediately found an article on “The Development of Referential Meaning in Music” by Laurel J. Trainor and Sandra E. Trehub. I may be mistaken, but perhaps this is a helpful response to Prof. Dubec comment re wanting help in looking up references to Referentiality and Music.

  4. Beverly Bradley says

    John, Your question to Prof. Dubec at 1:07 in the podcast harkens back to your Book Binders article in Touchstone, “What I Learned about the Great Books & Harry Potter,” to wit, “a shared text and a profound one operating on many levels.” Great podcast!

  5. Loved this podcast! It took me back to my Middle Ages courses in college.

  6. waynestauffer says

    Agreed, as an English Lit major, this was riht up my alley. Thank you Dr. Dubec.

  7. waynestauffer says

    *right* up my alley

  8. An especially rich episode. Many thanks to all involved. Dr. Dubec made an excellent guest. In lieu of expanding Dr. Dubec’s course duties, would maybe a list of works she’s relied on in her own studies or found especially beneficial be possible? Thanks again to all involved.

  9. Straight from Dr Dubec, Michael! Enjoy!

    A. Some Specific Resources: A Basic Starter Pack
    1. The Language of Flowers: What They Mean (L-Z; follow links for flowers earlier in the alphabet)

    2. The Meaning of Shapes: Developing Visual Grammar

    3. A (Short) Glossary of Traditional Symbols in Western Literature

    3. Harry Potter and the Tarot Cards

    5. Patristic Exegesis (Four Levels of Meaning)

    6. The Medieval Bestiary: Digital Text Library

    7. Chart of Correspondences (with the Stages of Alchemical Transformation)

    8. Magick Correspondences; Big Elemental Correspondences Chart (with the Elements)

    B. General (Large) Resources (book-length works)
    1. A Dictionary of Literary Symbols by Michael Ferber

    2. Medieval Art: A Topical Dictionary by Leslie Ross

    3. A Dictionary of Symbols by J. E. Cirlot

    4. Online Dictionary of Symbolism

    5. Dictionary of Biblical Imagery: An Encyclopedic Exploration of the Images, Symbols, Motifs, Metaphors, Figures of Speech, and Literary Patterns of the Bible (General Editors are Leland Ryken, James C. Wilhoit, and Tremoer Longman III)

  10. Thanks a ton!

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