History BrokenAesop / Literature

19th Jun '17 5:33:25 AM JustTroper
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** Next, Rowling [[WordOfGod claimed]] that she intended Dumbledore to be gay, and it was supposed to "teach children tolerance". However, nearly all heterosexual romances in the series (even Snape's unrequited love for Lily Evans) played a positive role, and Dumbledore's allegedly homosexual feelings for Grindelwald were decidedly calamitous, resulting in the rise of the magical variant of fascism, many deaths (including the death of Ariana), and, to some extent, even WW2. Some religious conservatives even praised this plot point, seeing it as confirmation for their idea that "homosexuality is evil".
8th May '17 12:34:23 PM PrincessGwen
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* The original ''Literature/BeautyAndTheBeast'' story by Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve actually contains this. After the Beast's curse is broken and he has returned to human form, his mother returns home and is indignant that he married Beauty and refuses to acknowledge her, because Beauty is not royalty or nobility. The woman who cursed the Beast sees this and tells the mother what a horrible person she is for being so narrow-minded and refusing to see Beauty as the one who broke the curse on her son... and ''then'' reveals out of nowhere that [[AssPull Beauty is actually of royal birth, who was placed to be raised by a merchant and is actually]] [[HalfHumanHybrid part-fairy]], making the mother's refusal pointless and ruin the idea that love is more important than one's birth.

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* The original ''Literature/BeautyAndTheBeast'' story by Suzanne Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve actually contains this. After the Beast's curse is broken and he has returned to human form, his mother returns home and is indignant that he married Beauty and refuses to acknowledge her, because Beauty is not royalty or nobility. The woman who cursed the Beast sees this and tells the mother what a horrible person she is for being so narrow-minded and refusing to see Beauty as the one who broke the curse on her son... and ''then'' reveals out of nowhere that [[AssPull Beauty is actually of royal birth, who was placed to be raised by a merchant and is actually]] [[HalfHumanHybrid part-fairy]], making the mother's refusal pointless and ruin the idea that love is more important than one's birth.
16th Apr '17 11:04:05 PM BattleMaster
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* The Creator/RobertHeinlein novel ''Literature/FarnhamsFreehold'': it's supposed to be an anti-racism novel, but given that Heinlein was an upper-class white man from pre-Civil Rights Era California, he really didn't have a great handle on what race issues actually were so he just flipped things around so that the protagonists ended up in a society where black people (who were [[IAmAHumanitarian also cannibals]]) were now the masters of enslaved white people, so the Aesop came across as something along the lines of "given half a chance, black people will turn around and be even worse to white people than white people currently are to them." Or as one review put it, it was "an anti-racism novel only a Klansman could love."
1st Apr '17 4:46:34 AM Gess
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* ''Literature/HarryPotter'': The series is largely centered around the message of unity and tolerance. Specifically, unity and tolerance between pure-blood and half-blood wizards. Discrimination and segregation between them are always depicted as wrong. It also has the bad guys seeking to kill or enslave non-wizard people (aka Muggles) as an analogue to Nazism. This would all be fine and dandy, if it weren't for the fact that wizards ―even the good ones― are highly guilty of separatism and segregation by hiding themselves and their society from Muggles and rejecting their culture (the reason wizards are still stuck with medieval technology is that they're largely ignorant of modern technology and science due to their rejection of anything "Muggle"), and the books never portray this behavior as being wrong. Okay, being fair, many wizards believe in Muggles' rights, and some have an interest in Muggle culture, and they have a study called Muggle Studies dedicated to it. But in those cases, this is done in an incredibly condescending manner, almost as if dealing with an animal species, and it's never done with the objective of integration. In other words, being a promoter of Muggle rights practically makes you the wizard of equivalent a PETA activist. Consider how Ron's father's job is specifically to study Muggle culture but still has to ask Harry what the point of a rubber duck is and that the existence of wizards with fully Muggle parents means that they don't even need to leave their veil to get most of the info they could ever need to see how seriously they honestly take it.
** [[WordOfGod Rowling]] tried to justify this by stating that wizards are afraid of Muggles, and if Muggles found out about magic it probably would cause more trouble. So segregation is unavoidable in the Potterverse. Which... only enforces the broken nature of the Aesop.
** If anything, the actions of the characters clearly show why Muggles and Wizards can't live happily. To wizards, things like Confounding driving test instructors and magicking exploding toilets and [[LaserGuidedAmnesia memory wipes]] are harmless little pranks or day-to-day minutiae -- things that Muggles can't foresee or defend themselves from. And almost all of the Muggles that encounter magic in the series react to it with violence and hostility -- the Dursleys fear of magic makes them abuse Harry, Tom Riddle's father abandoned his pregnant wife when he found out she was a witch [[spoiler: that had been drugging him with love potions and raping him until she believed that he really loved her back, at which point she stopped drugging him and he got the Hell away from his rapist]], [[spoiler: three Muggle boys abused Ariana Dumbledore so viciously that her brain was permanently affected.]] By this track record, the two races are dangerous to one another and shouldn't mix.
*** The reluctance of wizards to reveal themselves may be understandable in the backstory and the first books, but by the end of the saga said bad guys, a cabal of evil wizards intent on not simply segregating non-wizards, but to torment and terrorize them, does become a legitimate threat and then take over. That is ''still'' not treated as a reason enough for the good guys to at least warn the non-wiz population of danger and give them a fighting chance. Hell, the ''giants'', a race explicitly called AlwaysChaoticEvil, is found worthy of an invitation to the alliance. But non-wizards? Not even once suggested.
*** It's also worth noting that at the beginning of the sixth book, the new Prime Minister of the United Kingdom is sitting in his office when Rufus Scrimgeour, the current Minister of Magic, appears from the fireplace and starts telling him all about the wizarding world. It's apparently tradition that the Prime Minister is the only human (beyond Muggle parents with magical children, like the Grangers) who's allowed to know about the magical world--the barrier is protected by the idea that [[YouHaveToBelieveMe no human would believe it if the Minister tried to share the information]], which is already a problem--which would imply some kind of cooperation between the two realms...except for the fact that the Minister of Magic's advice essentially amounts to "Hey, some crazy stuff is probably about to happen in your world, and it's the fault of wizards, so you'd better start cooking up some convincing lies about it while we take care of it for you." It's implied that wizards are ''so'' superior to Muggles that there's no way any of their paltry inventions could possibly help fight off Dark wizard attacks. Apparently being a wizard or witch grants you complete immunity to things like, oh, ''bullets.'' Granted, wizards can heal most injuries instantaneously, but they also need to use their wands to perform spells--if you aimed a few Uzis at a wizard army's hands, you could at least incapacitate them for a while. Even more egregious is the fact that while there are enchantments designed to preserve TheMasquerade, such as Muggle-Repelling or Memory Charms, the evil wizards in question ''want'' Muggles to live in terror, so they probably wouldn't be using them in the first place.
** As if that wasn't [[{{Egregious}} egregious]] enough, the series has House Elves, a race that is treated as slave servants of wizards. Their enslavement is never depicted as wrong, and the one person who is against it, Hermione, is treated as an annoying tree-hugging hippy. The closest the series goes to decrying the treatment of House Elves is saying that [[FamilyUnfriendlyAesop it's wrong to enslave them if you're an abusive master, not that it's wrong to enslave them]]. It also makes an argument that Elves [[HappinessInSlavery enjoy serving wizards and abhor the attempts to free them]], ignoring the fact that they're also conditioned to severely and bodily punish themselves for failing a task, which clearly indicates that they are not in control of their own minds, and strongly implies that their "enjoyment" of servitude is just as forced.

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* ''Literature/HarryPotter'': ''Literature/HarryPotter''
**
The series is largely centered around the message of unity and tolerance. Specifically, unity and tolerance between pure-blood and half-blood wizards. Discrimination and segregation between them are always depicted as wrong. It also has the bad guys seeking to kill or enslave non-wizard people (aka Muggles) as an analogue to Nazism. This would all be fine and dandy, if it weren't for the fact that wizards ―even the good ones― are highly guilty of separatism and segregation by hiding themselves and their society from Muggles and rejecting their culture (the reason wizards are still stuck with medieval technology is that they're largely ignorant of modern technology and science due to their rejection of anything "Muggle"), and the books never portray this behavior as being wrong. Okay, being fair, many wizards believe in Muggles' rights, and some have an interest in Muggle culture, and they have a study called Muggle Studies dedicated to it. But in those cases, this is done in an incredibly condescending manner, almost as if dealing with an animal species, and it's never done with the objective of integration. In other words, being a promoter of Muggle rights practically makes you the wizard of equivalent a PETA activist. Consider how Ron's father's job is specifically to study Muggle culture but still has to ask Harry what the point of a rubber duck is and that the existence of wizards with fully Muggle parents means that they don't even need to leave their veil to get most of the info they could ever need to see how seriously they honestly take it.
** *** [[WordOfGod Rowling]] tried to justify this by stating that wizards are afraid of Muggles, and if Muggles found out about magic it probably would cause more trouble. So segregation is unavoidable in the Potterverse. Which... only enforces the broken nature of the Aesop.
** *** If anything, the actions of the characters clearly show why Muggles and Wizards can't live happily. To wizards, things like Confounding driving test instructors and magicking exploding toilets and [[LaserGuidedAmnesia memory wipes]] are harmless little pranks or day-to-day minutiae -- things that Muggles can't foresee or defend themselves from. And almost all of the Muggles that encounter magic in the series react to it with violence and hostility -- the Dursleys fear of magic makes them abuse Harry, Tom Riddle's father abandoned his pregnant wife when he found out she was a witch [[spoiler: that had been drugging him with love potions and raping him until she believed that he really loved her back, at which point she stopped drugging him and he got the Hell away from his rapist]], [[spoiler: three Muggle boys abused Ariana Dumbledore so viciously that her brain was permanently affected.]] By this track record, the two races are dangerous to one another and shouldn't mix.
*** The reluctance of wizards to reveal themselves may be understandable in the backstory and the first books, but Even worse, by the end of the saga said the bad guys, a fascist cabal of evil wizards intent on not simply segregating non-wizards, but to torment and terrorize them, does wizards, become a legitimate nation-wide threat and then take over. over the country, unleashing a campaign of terror against Muggle-born and Muggles. That is ''still'' not treated as a good enough reason enough for the good guys to at least warn the non-wiz population of about danger and give them a fighting chance. Hell, Notably, the ''giants'', giants, a race explicitly called AlwaysChaoticEvil, is found worthy of an invitation to the alliance. But non-wizards? Not even once suggested.
*** It's also worth noting that at the beginning of the sixth book, the new Prime Minister of the United Kingdom is sitting in his office when Rufus Scrimgeour, the current Minister of Magic, appears from the fireplace and starts telling him all about the wizarding world. It's apparently tradition that the Prime Minister is
suggested. In fact, the only human (beyond Muggle parents with magical children, like the Grangers) who's allowed to know about the magical world--the barrier is protected by the idea that [[YouHaveToBelieveMe no human would believe it if the Minister tried to share the information]], which is already a problem--which would imply some kind of cooperation between the two realms...except for the fact that ever present is the Minister of Magic's advice essentially amounts Magic occasionally bringning the non-wiz Prime Minister up to date, and even ''that'' is done in a perfunctory and condescending way, basically boiling down to "Hey, some crazy stuff is probably about to happen in your world, and it's the fault of wizards, so you'd better start cooking up some convincing lies about it while we take care of it for you." It's implied that wizards are ''so'' superior to Muggles that there's no way any of their paltry inventions could possibly help fight off Dark wizard attacks. Apparently being a wizard or witch grants you complete immunity to things like, oh, ''bullets.'' Granted, wizards can heal most injuries instantaneously, but they also need to use their wands to perform spells--if you aimed a few Uzis at a wizard army's hands, you could at least incapacitate them for a while. Even more egregious is the fact that while there are enchantments designed to preserve TheMasquerade, such as Muggle-Repelling or Memory Charms, the evil wizards in question ''want'' Muggles to live in terror, so they probably wouldn't be using them in the first place.
** As if that wasn't [[{{Egregious}} egregious]] enough, Next, the series has House Elves, a race that is treated as slave servants of wizards. Their enslavement is never depicted as wrong, and the one person who is against it, Hermione, is treated as an annoying tree-hugging hippy. The closest the series goes to decrying the treatment of House Elves is saying that [[FamilyUnfriendlyAesop it's wrong to enslave them if you're an abusive master, not that it's wrong to enslave them]]. It also makes an argument that Elves [[HappinessInSlavery enjoy serving wizards and abhor the attempts to free them]], ignoring the fact that they're also conditioned to severely and bodily punish themselves for failing a task, which clearly indicates that they are not in control of their own minds, and strongly implies that their "enjoyment" of servitude is just as forced.



*** Rowling hastily tried to remedy the issue of Slyterin's isolation in the last book by introducing (for the first time in the entire saga, and even then only in the backstory) an inter-house couple. A pair, whose relationship was concieved and developed before they was sorted, and it quickly deteriorated and broke up largely because of the poisonous influence of House Slytherin on the boy.



** Rowling hastily tried to remedy the issue of Slyterin's isolation in the last book by introducing (for the first time in the entire saga, and even then only in the backstory) an inter-house pair. The attempt promptly crashes and burns when you reailse that the relationship was concieved and developed before the couple was sorted, and it quickly deteriorated and broke up largely because of the poisonous influence of House Slytherin on the boy.
21st Mar '17 12:16:59 PM JJHIL325
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*** The idea that Slytherin prizes a wicked lust for power is further put to rest by the character of its former Head of House, Horace Slughorn. He's ambitious, yes, but both for himself and his prized students, the idea being that he will recognize and nurture talent, and they will in turn remember him when they become successful. Furthermore Slughorn, despite being a Slytherin, wants nothing to do with their bigotry (he considers Hermione and Lily Evans among his prized students despite their impure blood) and is [[MyGodWhatHaveIDone absolutely horrified]] [[MyGreatestFailure by his part in Voldemort's rise to power]] [[spoiler: by telling another promising young student, Tom Riddle, about Horcruxes.]]

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*** The idea that Slytherin prizes a wicked lust for power is further put to rest by the character of its former Head of House, Horace Slughorn. He's ambitious, yes, but both for himself and his prized students, the idea being that he will recognize and nurture talent, and they will in turn remember him when they become successful. Furthermore Slughorn, despite being a Slytherin, wants nothing to do with their bigotry (he considers Hermione and Lily Evans among his prized students despite their impure blood) being Muggle-borns) and is [[MyGodWhatHaveIDone absolutely horrified]] [[MyGreatestFailure by his part in Voldemort's rise to power]] [[spoiler: by telling another promising young student, Tom Riddle, about Horcruxes.]]
21st Mar '17 12:14:36 PM JJHIL325
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** In general the novel's overall AmbitionIsEvil aesop suffers from InformedAttribute:
*** The point about AmbitionIsEvil leading to bad fates for Dumbledore, Snape, Voldemort and others, and happy fates for the HumbleHero Harry Potter falls flat since TheHero's success comes down to having a lot of convenient PlotCoupon handed down to him, alongside huge doses of luck and PlotArmor. In addition, Harry Potter is the inheritor of wealth and fame thanks to the actions of his parents and ancestors, so he doesn't really have a lot to be ambitious about unlike Dumbledore, Riddle and Snape (products of troubled low-income homes).
*** Slytherin's house is meant to show the bad side of ambition, except Slytherin is the house of tradition and wizarding elites, who want to preserve order and prevent genuinely ambitious people such as Hermione (driven by committment to excellence, and social and institutional reform) from rising further. Only Voldemort and Snape qualify as ambitious Slytherins and neither of them are part of the traditional wizarding elite. A better aesop would be to say that Slytherin is the house of tradition and opposes innovation since those are the attributes its members and house have far more frequently displayed in the books and backstory.
*** The idea that Slytherin prizes a wicked lust for power is further put to rest by the character of its former Head of House, Horace Slughorn. He's ambitious, yes, but both for himself and his prized students, the idea being that he will recognize and nurture talent, and they will in turn remember him when they become successful. Furthermore Slughorn, despite being a Slytherin, wants nothing to do with their bigotry (he considers Hermione and Lily Evans among his prized students despite their impure blood) and is [[MyGodWhatHaveIDone absolutely horrified]] [[MyGreatestFailure by his part in Voldemort's rise to power]] [[spoiler: by telling another promising young student, Tom Riddle, about Horcruxes.]]
19th Mar '17 7:52:48 AM DrOO7
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* The ''Series/RizzoliAndIsles'' series runs on this. One of it's protagonists, Jane Rizzoli, relentlessly complains about how she's dismissed or ignored because of her plain looks, especially in favor of an attractive woman--but she takes an instant dislike to every beautiful woman that she meets, automatically assumes that she's a bitch or an idiot, and treats her as such. She also has nothing but contempt for the men who fall in love with these women, believing them to be shallow, but she spends all of the first book lusting after her handsome partner and in the next book, falls for (and eventually marries) an equally handsome FBI agent.

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* The ''Series/RizzoliAndIsles'' series runs on this. One of it's protagonists, Jane Rizzoli, relentlessly complains about how she's dismissed or ignored because of her plain looks, especially in favor of an attractive woman--but woman. Fair enough. . .except she takes does ''the exact same thing'' by taking an instant dislike to every beautiful woman that she meets, automatically assumes assuming that she's a bitch or an idiot, and treats treating her as such. She also has nothing but contempt for the men who fall in love with these women, believing them to be shallow, but shallow. Aside from being a grossly unfair and stereotypical assumption, she herself spends all of the first book lusting after her handsome partner and in the next book, falls for (and eventually marries) an equally handsome FBI agent. Apparently it's only shallow when beautiful people fall in love with beautiful people. When unattractive people do, it's just fine.
18th Mar '17 1:55:29 PM Ferot_Dreadnaught
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* Several times in the ''Literature/NancyDrew Files'' series, Nancy is blasted for her snooping not just by the people she's investigating, but by her friends and her father. Problem is, Nancy always turns out to be right about the people she was suspicious of (while not guilty, they were involved somehow). Especially glaring in one book when boyfriend Ned gets so angry at her about her suspicions of his best friend that he breaks up with her, but in the next book, he asks her to help his new girlfriend. Apparently, Nancy's meddling is only bad when it affects him. When he needs her help, it's perfectly fine--she herself points out his hypocrisy.
18th Mar '17 1:48:27 PM DrOO7
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* Several times in the ''Literature/NancyDrew Files'' series, Nancy is blasted for her snooping not just by the people she's investigating, but by her friends and her father. Problem is, not only does Nancy turn out to be right about the people she was suspicious of (while not guilty, they were involved somehow), in one book, boyfriend Ned gets so angry at her that he breaks up with her, but in the next book, he asks her to help his new girlfriend. Apparently, Nancy's meddling is only bad when it affects him. When he needs her help, it's perfectly fine--she herself points out his hypocrisy.

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* Several times in the ''Literature/NancyDrew Files'' series, Nancy is blasted for her snooping not just by the people she's investigating, but by her friends and her father. Problem is, not only does is, Nancy turn always turns out to be right about the people she was suspicious of (while not guilty, they were involved somehow), somehow). Especially glaring in one book, book when boyfriend Ned gets so angry at her about her suspicions of his best friend that he breaks up with her, but in the next book, he asks her to help his new girlfriend. Apparently, Nancy's meddling is only bad when it affects him. When he needs her help, it's perfectly fine--she herself points out his hypocrisy.


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* The ''Series/RizzoliAndIsles'' series runs on this. One of it's protagonists, Jane Rizzoli, relentlessly complains about how she's dismissed or ignored because of her plain looks, especially in favor of an attractive woman--but she takes an instant dislike to every beautiful woman that she meets, automatically assumes that she's a bitch or an idiot, and treats her as such. She also has nothing but contempt for the men who fall in love with these women, believing them to be shallow, but she spends all of the first book lusting after her handsome partner and in the next book, falls for (and eventually marries) an equally handsome FBI agent.
26th Feb '17 2:05:10 PM MagBas
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* The old children's story ''Littlest Rabbit''. The titular character is teased and abused by bullies due to being small. But then he grows into a big, strong rabbit and beats the stuffing out of the bullies. [[SarcasmMode Yeah, great moral there]].

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* The old children's story ''Littlest Rabbit''. The titular character is teased and abused by bullies due to being small. But then he grows into a big, strong rabbit and beats the stuffing out of the bullies. [[SarcasmMode Yeah, great moral there]].
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