spite of the lengthy discussions by Harry Potter fans about the possible death
of certain characters in the Deathly Hallows while J.K. Rowling was in the
process of writing it; there has not been much analysis about this topic. It is
obvious that death is one of the main issues in the books and the way it is
underlined throughout the series opens up the ground for the discussion on one
of the most taboo themes in Western culture amongst children, although children
stories have always embroidered death into their plots – even as a
character-showing the fascination that humans of all ages have with the unknown
stage of non-living.
presentation was triggered by the comment from a thirteen year old boy in my
family who reported that the last book helped him deal with the painful sudden
death of his own mother only weeks after the publication of the book. It was
not the first time our dialogue about Harry Potter would direct my research and
since his previous comment had led down the route of translation and humour
with successful results I decided to embark in this new adventure and see where
it would take me for this conference.
task for this presentation will be to examine death in the books, its imagery, its
language and the types of death to which children are exposed and the different
options and role models offered for coping with the numerous and many times
brutal deaths. I will be searching for connections to other well-known children
books and attempting to map a portion of Death’s territory in the imagination
of contemporary children.