Why Draco Malfoy is at the Heart of 'Harry Potter'

Josh Larsen

Jessi Gering
July 20, 2011

In The Half-Blood Prince, it seems like Snape and Dumbledore play their parts and make their sacrifices as much to save Draco as they do to save Harry. Although Harry is very special, the story emphasizes that to a certain wise head-master, the life of every student is infinitely precious.

I thought it was cool in The Deathly Hallows that when given the chance to save Draco or leave him to his deserved death, Harry chooses compassion and the chance for reconciliation as well. Another sign of Dumbledore's influence as a mentor, I think.

July 20, 2011

I love it, love it, love it!  This is exactly how I viewed Draco's role in the stories as well as the fact that in Deathly Hallows part one, he choooses to save Harry for reasons unknown to us.  But you can see him struggling with Voldemort's ways and it is obvious when he makes his choice as to which "side" he is on, it is not necessarily Voldemort's but his parent's.  Sometimes people just leave the fight altogether instead of choosing one side or the other, showing the true nature of apathy.  I have always touted the uderlying Christian messages in these books and films, whether they were intended by the author or not.  Thank you for bringing to light the nature of this character's role in the grand scheme of these wonderful stories!

July 20, 2011

My son and I have shared the Harry Potter series from Book 1 (he just turned 19) until seeing the 8th movie tonight.  When Snape killed Dumbledore at the end of Book 6 (?) we were both sure that Snape had done so at Dumbledore's request and specifically in order to prevent Draco from damaging his soul by committing murder.  That Harry and his pals kept saving Draco (and his pals') *donkeys* was an aspect of the books that made me love them all the more.  These actions showed a strength of character that belied the immature bickering that went on in their adolescent world.  Even Voldemort was given multiple opportunities to repent of his choices and in the end, his destruction was of his own making, not Harry's.  Rowling may not be in the same class as Tolkein or Lewis but she's on my "keeper" list never-the-less.

Tim H.
July 21, 2011

These are interesting comments, as they highlight both the benefits and difficulties of "discernment"--that is, the effort to reclaim, or at least glimpse the divine in, texts that are clearly secular in source and scope. While the concepts of forgiveness and restorative justice are in play throughout the entire Harry Potter series (both written and visualized), the close of the Dumbledore/King's Cross scene presents a textual crux. In both book and movie, the scene ends with Harry asking his mentor whether or not the just experienced episode was real or just "in his head." Dumbledore's response, a qualified affirmative of both, highlights a problematic divergence for those who would track Christian themes under the textual surface of the narrative. Most Christians believe in the physical reality of the afterlife--a reality outside the individual mind that both radiates from and revolves around God--but Dumbledore's responses to Harry's questions suggest at least the possibility that reality is not only what we make it, but also that it is fundamentally isolated to our own experience. As such, the final scenes of the Harry Potter narrative simultaneously reflect multiple worldviews.

July 22, 2011

I love the idea of villains being blessed too. I think Draco and his parents demonstrate how fear and pride makes it uncomfortable to commit and easy to compromise. The members of the Order of the Phoenix and Dumbledore's Army are all-in against Voldemort. Bellatrix is all-in for him. But the Malfoy parents do what they think will benefit them. After Voldemort is defeated the Malfoys walk away with their wounded pride and lost status, Draco in tow.

I don't think I see God's coming kingdom in the platform scene so much as His present kingdom that is still reconciling to Him.On the platform Harry and Draco exchange nods that seem less than warm.Harry's son expresses prejudices again Slytherin. I hope in God's coming kingdom enemies embrace as brothers with no baggage, fully reconciled, imparting the same grace and forgiveness toward past wrongs as God imparts. At least, as a recovering villain, that's what I'm hoping for.

Billy Riddle
July 24, 2011

Shows that no matter how far we go down a dark path in life, that no one is beyond redemption nor hope.

Ashley Allen
August 11, 2011

Despite not being a Christian, I loved this article. There's definitely a lot more than meets the eye, and I LOVED this interpretation.

August 11, 2011

I hadn't had a chance to read this post. I saw the movie but didn't notice Malfoy or at least it didn't register. Thanks for having a sharp eye and noting it here as you did. I've watched all the films now with my kids (most of them have read all the books and are learning the struggle between print and cinema). I thought this last film was by far the best, a really wonderful film I thought. Lots of good comments here too! pvk

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