Potter Fails to Cast Spell over Richard Dawkins

No surprises here: from the Telegraph, an article titled “Harry Potter Fails to Cast Spell over Professor Richard Dawkins.” I’ve just flown in from my Midwest tour and I’ll write more when my arms aren’t so tired.

I think we can file Professor Dawkins’ ideas about children’s literature under the “if the Fool does not laugh, it is not the Way” heading.


  1. Dawkins admits he is unencumbered by evidence of reading the books, so I’ll subject his opinion to as much credence as he places in his “scientific observation” in practice. None.

    Really, they couldn’t write stuff this good if they paid the Saturday Night Live writers double-dog-dare-ya overtime.

    If all scientists are as observant as this chap, science just bought the farm.

  2. Arabella Figg says

    Uh…doesn’t “Professor” Dawkins sabotage his thesis by claiming his “abusive” childhood fairytales possibly had “a sort of insidious affect on rationality”? Therefore, is his mind able to set forth an objective and reasoned argument?

    Gee, I didn’t know Pullman was “scientific.” I thought he wrote fantasy.

    Even a cat is never “too young to know what its views are about the cosmos or morality”…

  3. I guess we shouldn’t be surprised: When one doesn’t believe in a Creator, Creativity and Imagination lose value…

  4. Arabella Figg says

    Dawkins shows himself to be a very angry person. Such anger can be fed by many things, such as disappointment or trauma in childhood; possibly he was brought up in a very strict, fear-based religious home; he certainly appears to have been quite disillusioned regarding “fairy tales can come true, it can happen to you…” Such strong feelings don’t come out of nowhere, nor do they come out of philosophical reason and curiosity. His embracing Pullman, while not having read Harry Potter, illustrates that.

    Not the good person to pursue a case for “evidence.” People with crusading agendas don’t have open minds and “see or not see” as they will. I pray for this man who, out of his own damage, may do very much damage to many little ones.

    In the meantime, little Flako tried to climb the shower curtain and shockingly brought down both curtain and bar (true story of former kitten)…

  5. I believe cbaker1 hit the nail on the head with Dawkins views on fantasy literature.

    Take a look at this quote from J R R Tolkien in his work, On Fairy Stories, “Fantasy remains a human right: we make in our measure and in our derivative mode, because we are made: and not only made, but made in the image and likeness of a Maker”.

    Without any belief in a Creator (God), you disavow any ability understand or create in the fairy/fantasy realm of literature. As C S Lewis would have commented, you have cut-off your “imaginative welcome”.

  6. Arabella Figg says

    Good point, David. If you cannot imagine beyond yourself, you cannot imagine beyond…yourself.

  7. Arabella Figg says

    I didn’t know where to put this. But I thought you all might be amused (or bemused) by the following “life seemingly imitates art” announcement. From Time magazine, 11.19.08, “The Fifty Best Inventions of the Year”:

    #28 The Invisibility Cloak.
    “Scientists at UC Berkeley have taken a major step toward making Harry Potter’s disguise of choice a reality. They’ve engineered two new materials–one using a fishnet of metal layers, the other using tiny silver wires–that neither absorb nor reflect light, causing it instead to bend backward. The principle at work is refraction, which is what makes a straw appear bent in a glass of water.”

    Now, if they can just figure out Disapparating, our carbon footprints will seriously decrease in size.

    Fullatricks thinks a fleece blanket is an Invisibility Cloak; however, I see a lump…

  8. Arabella Figg says

    From yesterday’s (12-1-08) Sally Forth comic strip. I thought it beautifully conveyed the attitude of atheistic HP critics.

    Panel 1 (title panel): Sally’s Holiday Guide. #1 We get a GPS unit for long car trips.

    Panel 2: The Forths, driving along, hear this from the unit: “You are lost. You have rejected any and all philosophies and faiths and so are now adrift and alienated in a world you alone define but cannot comprehend.”

    Says Sally: “Our unit’s stuck on ‘Existential Mode’ again.”

    Kitties exist, therefore they are…

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