Well, the worst happened. About a week ago He Who Must Not Be Named was voted into the White House running on a platform of fear, racism, xenophobia, sexism, homophobia, ignorance, and the list goes on. It feels a bit like a fantasy-based young adult novel, but sadly it’s real.
I admit that I’m a Harry Potter nerd and I’ve read the series several times. I’m actually taking a break from re-reading them again until Lucy and Aki are old enough for us to read them together. So I was excited to read the play that was published recently, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, and that is currently running in London. But reading this book as the election was happening made clear the unfortunate parallel between the Dark Lord and Donald Trump. Apparently I’m not the only one- the internet is full of side by side images of the two of them.
Anyhow, one thing that made me happy in this week full of unhappiness was learning that in the play Hermione Granger is played by a black woman. It made me think of this fan art and this Huffington Post article from a few years back.
Maybe it seems like a leap, but reimagining the popular narrative is hugely meaningful to me as an artist, as a person of color, and as a parent. Maybe it’s imagination that can help us SEE the water we’re swimming in… in other words, the white supremacist patriarchal culture that surrounds us so completely that most Americans don’t even recognize that it’s there.