How J.K. Rowling Is J.K. Ruining Harry Potter For Fans
Start writing a post

How J.K. Rowling Is J.K. Ruining Harry Potter For Fans

Last week, J.K. Rowling posted a series of tweets that were heavily criticized by the trans community and their allies.


I always find it interesting when authors can write these intricate, fleshed out stories with well developed characters and complex world building, but can't manage to write a 260 character tweet without sounding ignorant.

The disappointment that fans have had towards the author of the Harry Potter series isn't anything new. Rowling has become infamous to trying to revise characters by claiming they had always been some kind of minority in a disingenuous attempt to gain diversity points. Rowling's main cast of the Potter series is largely white, with the only characters of color being in the background and heavily based on stereotypes. They are also mostly, if not all, able bodied and heterosexual.

While, yes, representation is important and the lack of diversity in the Harry Potter series is disappointing, by revising characters years after the series has ended to make the series look less exclusionary she is trivializing the issue to make herself look better. If she wanted to have one of her main characters be gay, she should have portrayed him that way in the original series,

J.K. Rowling has only dug herself further into this hole since she first began to receive some of this criticism. Last week, on June 6th, the Harry Potter author posted a series of tweets that were incredibly insensitive towards the trans community.

It began with her response to the title of a news article, "Creating a More Equal Post Covid-19 World For People Who Menstruate" to which Rowling quote-replied, " 'People who menstruate' I'm sure there used to be a word for those people. Someone help me out. Wumben? Wimpund? Woomud?"

The article using "people who menstruate" rather than "women" is an effort to include trans men and non-binary people who still experience menstruation, but do not identify as women. Trans men are men, and just because they may have periods, does not make them a woman. Moreover, trans women don't experience periods, and that doesn't make them less of women. There are also plenty of cis-gender women who don't experience menstruation.The author of that article understood all of this, even if J.K. Rowling doesn't.

It could be assumed that Rowling is just ignorant, and wasn't aware that the article was trying to be inclusive of trans men. However, her tweets that followed prove that she is all to aware of the intent, and even goes on to express the importance of sex, implying that trans inclusion is a threat to feminism.

Rowling is completely missing the point. No one who wrote that article or disagreed with her original tweet is trying to invalidate women or biological sex. She, on the other hand, is continuously invalidating the trans community.

No one is trying to erase sex, we are simply saying that sex does not equate to gender. Therefore, gender does not equate to specific biological functions such as menstruation. This is not erasing the experience or hardship women face in any way. Additionally, the way Rowling phrases that last tweet, "I'd march with you if you were discriminated against on the basis of being trans," is poorly done. The if implies that trans people don't experience discrimination everyday-- much more, honestly, than she will experience as a straight, cis, rich, white woman.

Her promise is also empty. Just days ago, the Trump administration removed protections from the trans community that stopped the discrimination against LGBTQ people in terms of medical treatment and health care. Rowling was silent. So where is this promised advocacy? Where is this "love" and "kinship" she speaks of?

Trans women are women, and must be included in feminism. If your feminism only applies to cis women, it is not feminism. This is a concept that Rowling has yet to understand.

The Harry Potter series has become much larger than just the woman who first created the story. These books and movies were obviously wildly successful, and they were successful for a reason. People found comfort and solace in the pages of those books, in those characters and in that universe. Knowing that the author who wrote those words is less than accepting of communities many readers are part of or care about can be a devastating realization.

But if you're someone who's fallen in love with this universe, but is hurt by Rowling's words, know that this story is much bigger than just one woman.

Several Harry Potter actors even came forward to express that they did not agree with Rowling's statements. Daniel Radcliffe himself posted a statement on The Trevor Project blog just two days after J.K Rowling's tweets.

Radcliffe wrote:

To all the people who now feel that their experience of the books has been tarnished or diminished, I am deeply sorry for the pain these comments have caused you. I really hope that you don't entirely lose what was valuable in these stories to you. If these books taught you that love is the strongest force in the universe, capable of overcoming anything; if they taught you that strength is found in diversity, and that dogmatic ideas of pureness lead to the oppression of vulnerable groups; if you believe that a particular character is trans, nonbinary, or gender fluid, or that they are gay or bisexual; if you found anything in these stories that resonated with you and helped you at any time in your life — then that is between you and the book that you read, and it is sacred. And in my opinion nobody can touch that. It means to you what it means to you and I hope that these comments will not taint that too much.''

The rest of the golden trio, Rupert Grint and Emma Watson, both spoke out in support of the trans community following Rowling's statements as well. Grint told The Sunday Times that he fully supports the trans community. He said, "Trans women are women. Trans men are men. We should all be entitled to live with love and without judgment."

Emma Watson posted her statement on social media, saying, "Trans people are who they say they are, and deserve to live their lives without being constantly questioned or told they aren't who they say they are."

Let me clarify that this is not about a feud between the Harry Potter author and stars, it is not them turning on her, this is the Harry Potter actors supporting the trans community, as they should. Many people in the trans community have supported them all as well as Rowling for years, and it only seems fair that they do the same.

I personally found Radcliffe's statement especially touching, it is evident that he truly cares for not only his fans but trans people in their entirety. By making this statement, he is allowing those who love Harry Potter to continue doing so because, well, you can't argue with Harry Potter himself.

In addition to the actors speaking out, several other Young Adult authors expressed their support for trans people after Rowling's tweets.

Leigh Bardugo, the author of the Grishaverse triology as well a the Six of Crows duology tweeted:

In her replies, she received some criticism from her followers. After trying to engage in a thoughtful and civil conversation, someone replied with something blatantly transphobic. This user happened to have the name of one of Bardugo's main characters, Kaz Brekker in their username. Bardgugo replied, saying:

Additionally, Rick Riordan, the author of the Percy Jackson series tweeted a thread of trans and nonbinary authors, while also quoting several fans' tweets and showing his support for the trans community.

Cassandra Clare, author of the Shadowhunters Chronicles books posted her support for the trans community along with fan art of one of her trans characters, Diana Wrayburn.

Becky Albertalli, the author of several LGBTQ YA novels and most notably Simon vs the Homosapien agenda, posted that she donated $134.99 to the Black Trans Fund-- the exact cost of a Harry Potter box set.

If you are looking for a way to support black trans and non-binary authors now, a new book titled Felix Ever After was released by Kacen Callendar, who has won the Stonewall and Lamda awards. This book has already received significant praise.

Despite the initial hurt that many felt by Rowling's comments, the out pour of support from other authors and the Harry Potter cast, especially during pride month, was especially uplifting.

Don't let Rowling's comments diminish the magic of Harry Potter for you. Remember, trans rights are human rights.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

Women are known to lug around heavy purses with unnecessary items inside. How many of these useful items do you keep in your own bag? We need to be prepared with a list of things to have with us whenever we leave the house again.

Keep Reading... Show less

I personally love using song lyrics as my Instagram captions, especially from songs that I love or that mean a lot to me, and I happen to love Harry Styles and all of his songs! So I made a list of lyrics from each of his songs that you could use in your next Instagram caption.

Keep Reading... Show less

Everyone's been here. And, truthfully, it sucks. But in order to move on and get past something you need to allow yourself to feel it for what it is--all of the heartbreak and pain--and then you can start to take steps move on.

Keep Reading... Show less

11 Christmas Movies You'll Remember If You Were A 2000s Kid

Because I'm still reminiscing about simpler times.


The Christmas season is coming to an end, but it's not too late to get some last-minute movies in! Unfortunately, this year didn't look like a typical Christmas. While we can't have any big Christmas parties or family gatherings, we can still celebrate at home! Christmas is the best time for nostalgia, and we could all use some warm and fuzzy feelings as we wrap up a tough year and enter a new one that hasn't been proven any calmer, either.

As a kid who grew up in the 2000s, I can think of some of my favorite staple Christmas movies. If you're looking for recommendations or just a walk down memory lane, check out the list below.

Keep Reading... Show less

9 Reasons 'The Wilds' Should Be Your Next Binge Watch

The Wilds is the Best New Show on Amazon Prime


As we enter the new year, you might be looking for a great show to kick-off 2021. Look no further, I have the perfect recommendation. "The Wilds" was released on Amazon Prime last month and has been gaining traction steadily since then. This series of 10 one-hour episodes tells the stories of eight girls who find themselves on a deserted island after their plane crashed while they are on their way to a resort. Unlike other survival shows, there's a bit more to the story than what first meets the eye. This show is unique in characters, storytelling methods, and plot.

If you aren't convinced yet, allow me to provide you with a list of further persuasion.

Keep Reading... Show less

5 Therapeutic Ways To Be Adventurous During The Pandemic

Add some music to reduce the COVID-anxiety a bit and perceive your surroundings as the elaborate setting of a land far, far away from home


Even if we are not traveling abroad at the moment, we can still travel locally while maintaining social distancing and preventative guidelines. Sometimes, the little things in life seem the most fascinating and joyous to us compared to the flamboyant luxuries that we perhaps have a wishful desire for.

So, as a potential remedy for our travel necessity, I have listed 5 alternative ways in which you can relish your traveling desires during this pandemic.

Keep Reading... Show less

10 Things TikTok Made Me Buy, And Now My Life Is So Much Better

Where would I be without my Revlon hair dryer or CeraVe skin products?! Thanks, TikTok.


TikTok is a great way to see what products are trending. People are sharing tips and tricks about items that they use to make their life happier, healthier, or just easier.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments