Thursday, December 1, 2016

Thought Provoking Law Quote: Hermione Granger

The popular Harry Potter book series featured the exploits of a group of teenage wizards as they navigate the travails of life, friendship, evil forces, and magical education at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. An ongoing theme throughout the series focuses on the forces of dark magic and the danger presented to society by a particularly powerful dark wizard known as Voldemort. Harry and his friends, including the very bright Hermione Granger, have discovered that Voldemort’s presence was once again threatening danger to society and they had reported it to the appropriate governmental authorities. However, in order to avoid a public panic, the government has not merely ignored their entreaties to take action, but has engaged in an aggressive campaign to discredit the young wizards and their statements. In this setting, the following exchange takes place between Hermione Granger and Minister of Magic Rufus Scrimgeour:

"'Are you planning to follow a career in Magical Law, Miss Granger?’ asked Scrimgeour. ‘No, I am not,’ retorted Hermione. ‘I’m hoping to do some good in the world!'"

From her point of reference in the eternal struggle between good and evil, Hermione conceptualized law as an impediment to the accomplishment of good.  In her eyes, law was bad and to “do good” one had to do something other than law.  Considering law through Hermione’s eyes introduces us to the complexity of the question, “What is law?”

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