Friday 20 January 2017

Education System: School in Forest

In Derridean discourse, it is believed that *Language bears within itself the necessity of its own critique*. The element to undermine the proposition or hypothesis lies within itself.

जो भी हम कहना चाहे
बर्बाद करे अल्फाज़ हमारे  (Irshad kaamil)

_When I pronounce the word Future,the first syllable already belongs to the past._
_When I pronounce the word Silence,I destroy it._
_When I pronounce the word Nothing,I make something no non-being can hold_
( Wislawa Szymborska)

When Chetan Bhagat makes his God say *medium amount* of Intelligence and *a bit* of Imagination, he is actually deconstructing himself.
उसके शव्द उसको बार्बाद कर रहे है।
How? Well, a good literature is not possible without proper use of intelligence and imagination. Intelligence helps to rationalize the events and imagination helps in connecting events with the philosophical thought.
The popular literature is not 'real literature' because it lacks depth of intellectual analysis. Its flight of Imagination is also without wings of philosophy.
Thus only these two adjectives for intelligence n imagination are enough for the critique popular literature. Anyhow, the popular literature has all capacities to transcend these boundaries. It all depends on how deeply the writer can penetrate while dealing with shallowness of its content. Thus, in Chetan Bhagat's use of these words undermines entire popular literature or a sort of 'dramadies' written by similar writers.

Well, we are here to look critically at a popular meme on education system.
Below is given a popular meme on a satire on education system. It is very interesting to see how it criticizes the 'standardization' of education system. To a greater extent it is very difficult to disagree with the statement of satire made by this popular meme.

Well, can we find anything in this image to deconstruct it?

If language bears within itself the necessity of its own critique, how can we find the aporia / loose stone in this meme to deconstruct its very existence. On what grounds can we undermine the signifier so us to make Sign have different signified? 

One of the ways of doing so is to deconstruct the metaphor. The literal reading of metaphor can help in presenting a critique of its sign. In this meme, the animals are used metaphorically. The animals suggest humans with varied capabilities. One animar is good in the skill which it is meant to perform and is utterly incapable of performing other skills. Similarly, it attempts to suggest that humans cannot do everything. All humans are born with a gift to do one or the other things.
That's fine. But this 'maxim' that humans cannot do everything is not aptly used in this meme. Rather, it is fact that humans can do whatever they want to. Though humans are animals, yet humans are intelligent animal. Only human beings have intelligence as well as imagination. This makes human beings capable to have philosophy as well as historical sense. These capacities makes humans far better than other animals. Especially, when it comes to education, there is no parallel between humans and animals. Yes, training is a different things. We can train animals into doing several things and can use them in Circus or domesticate to use them for agrarian works. But we cannot educate animals . We cannot teach language to animals. We cannot teach language to philosophise or have historical sense. Thus, this meme do not convey the right message. It may be good for the satire on 'standardization of tests' but not at all on 'education system'.

Do you have any other points to deconstruct this metaphor?

Sunday 15 January 2017

Can teacher's leave workplace on time?

Can teacher's leave workplace on time?

If teachers like other work professionals leave workplace on time, is it good for them? Can they do so? Can't say if this was really said by workaholic Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam, but this cannot be applicable on genuine workers in any profession, and never on teachers.

  • 'Love your job, but never love your company . . .' - This cannot be applicable to teachers. Teachers do not work with things, files, personnel. They work with real human beings who are 'students' of varied age group - kids, teens, young adult or just adults. They are 'company' of teachers. Teachers love their company and this company never stops loving them. So, it is irrelevant if teachers are advised to believe in these words.
  •  If 'classroom' is the 'office' for teachers, teachers can leave classroom, but classroom always remains in the mind of the teacher. You can remove teacher out of classroom, but you cannot remove classroom (along with students) our of teacher's mind.
  • It is true that work is never - ending process. The process is to be enjoyed. But to say that 'it can never be completed' is not fair. If the prime work of teacher is to complete syllabus, it can be and should be completed in due time.
  • The students are not clients. They are a part of family - an extended family. True teachers think of character and career of students first and then their own children.
  • If teacher fails, the society has to pay heavy price. Neither family nor friends can repair the loss incurred by society because of failure of a teacher.
  • Teaching does not make life meaningless. Giving meaning to student's life is never meaningless. There can never be anything more to life than the class of smart students. There is no better place to socialize (students are real human beings to socialize), entertain (teaching is half theatre), relax (nothing relaxes better than having somebody to listen) and exercise (most calories burn in teaching) than classroom.
  • There can be no better lie than point no. 5. Those teachers who are administrators also, have to stay late to do admin work as during regular hours, they are in classroom. All office work in pending which has to be completed after all students have left the institute. And teachers carry lots of works of assessment etc for home work. So they do work late nights in preparing some activities, tasks, projects and are busy evaluating students' outcome.
  • Teachers are not machines. They are real human beings, who work with real human beings. So, their work can never be reduced to machine. Teaching is not mechanical job. The teachers may be teaching same topics, year after year, but it always changes the level of teaching, keeping learners in mind. Machines cannot do so.
  • Working late is not the proof of having meaning less life. The teachers who have found real meaning of teaching, work late hours, not only at workplace but at home also.
  • If you are teacher who work hard (or smart or what so ever people want to say) and get this advice from anybody, forward this blog to Mr/Ms. Adviser.  

Saturday 14 January 2017

Post-truth: The Word of the Year 2016

On Defining Post-Truth

  • After much discussion, debate, and research, the Oxford Dictionaries Word of the Year 2016 is post-truth – an adjective defined as ‘relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief’. (Source: Oxford Dictionary)

Why was this chosen? (Click to read)

A brief history of post-truth (Click to read)

How should we read Post-truth?

  • The compound word post-truth exemplifies an expansion in the meaning of the prefix post- that has become increasingly prominent in recent years. Rather than simply referring to the time after a specified situation or event – as in post-war or post-match – the prefix in post-truth has a meaning more like ‘belonging to a time in which the specified concept has become unimportant or irrelevant’. This nuance seems to have originated in the mid-20th century, in formations such as post-national (1945) and post-racial (1971). (English Language and Usage)
  • In many election campaigns, misinformation and disinformation have victory over information. Facts are no longer considered important in campaigns characterised by post-truth situation. People, manipulated by emotional appeals, treat misinformation and disinformation as information. Recall two recent events — the Brexit and the Trump campaigns. In both the campaigns, emotional appeals and feelings, and not facts (truth), were the factors for Britain leaving the European Union and the triumph of Trump.
  • Evidence-based facts and analysis that Brexit will not be beneficial to the country did not convince fifty-two per cent of the voters in the UK. As Sir John Major has said, the voters were bamboozled by ‘a whole galaxy of inaccurate and frankly untrue information’. It was a post-truth campaign. Take the recent US Presidential campaign by Donald Trump. Though about seventy percent of the statements he made during the election campaign were rated false (by PolitiFact), which was nearly three times the falsity score of Hillary Clinton, Trump was considered more honest and trustworthy than Clinton.
  • It is a classical example of post-truth politics. The nouns that collocate with post-truth are: politicians, era, age, politics, journalism, journalists, brigade, presidency, etc. Examples: post-truth politicians, post-truth era, post-truth journalists, and post-truth brigade. Here are examples of how the word is used in sentences: Mr Trump has been described as the leading exponent of post-truth politics — a reliance on assertions that “feel true” but have no basis in fact.
  • Post-truth politicians along with post-truth journalists and post-truth campaigners are responsible for creating post-truth voters. In the post-truth age, using euphemisms is a trend to convey that someone is a liar. He misinformed the public. (Albert p'Rayan)

Here are some interesting observations by Kathleen Higgins: (Source:

  • Post-truth refers to blatant lies being routine across society, and it means that politicians can lie without condemnation. This is different from the cliché that all politicians lie and make promises they have no intention of keeping — this still expects honesty to be the default position. In a post-truth world, this expectation no longer holds.
    This can explain the current political situation in the United States and elsewhere. Public tolerance of inaccurate and undefended allegations, non sequiturs in response to hard questions and outright denials of facts is shockingly high.
  • More radical forms of relativism are often denounced as under­mining basic values. Friedrich Nietzsche, the nineteenth-century phil­osopher who is often invoked to justify post-truth, was such a relativist, and he does suggest at times that deception is rife and should not be cat­egorically rejected. His point is to complicate our view of human behaviour and to object to moral certainties that encourage black-and-white judgements about what’s good and what’s evil. Thus he denies that there are moral facts, saying that we have only “moral interpretations”, and in doing so denies that moral assertions are unconditionally true. But this does not mean there is no truth. Even when he claims that our truths amount to our “irrefutable errors”, he is pointing to the exaggerated clarity of abstractions by comparison with empirical reality.
  • In fact — contrary to how he is often presented — Nietzsche held intellectual honesty at a premium. His most strenuous rejections of ‘truth’ are mostly directed not at truth, but at what has been asserted as true. Yes, Nietzsche was an elitist who was sceptical of democracy, and so his work does not necessarily fault leaders for talking down to the public. But it also points out the inconsistency of religious teachers who assume they have the right to lie.
  • Scientists and philosophers should be shocked by the idea of post-truth, and they should speak up when scientific findings are ignored by those in power or treated as mere matters of faith. Scientists must keep reminding society of the importance of the social mission of science — to provide the best information possible as the basis for public policy. And they should publicly affirm the intellectual virtues that they so effectively model: critical thinking, sustained inquiry and revision of beliefs on the basis of evidence. Another line from Nietzsche is especially pertinent now: “Three cheers for physics! — and even more for the motive that spurs us toward physics — our honesty!”

The students of Nirma University, Ahmedabad, Gujarat were agitating regarding weekend holidays.
The news paper reported it like this:
The news reads: "The students of Nirma Univeristy are agitating as they are given holidays on 2nd and 4th saturdays which is normal practice in Public Universities and govt institutions.

As soon as this was posted on Instagram, the comment from one of the students was posted. Read it:

  • Humour helps understand difficult concept:

Thursday 12 January 2017

Can technology replace teacher?

Can technology replace teacher?

Is teacher replaceable by technology?

The answer to these questions is another question. The question is why do we ask such questions? Has anything as such happened where humans are replaced by technology?

Well, may be there is something of this sort in our subconscious memory that humans are replaceable by technology and tools. Perhaps, collectively we all have memorised that there are very significant spaces which are encroached by technology and tools.
What is it? Where are these spaces? Are these spaces really existent?
Well, there are such spaces in urban and rural spaces where technology and tools have replaced human beings.
It is factories in urban spaces and agriculture in rural spaces.
The integration of technology in factories has minimised use of humans to almost one tenth.
The technological innovation in agricultural equipment has not only reduced human beings but have changed the skills of people working in agrarian societies.  They have readily accepted the change and adapted new skills necessary to work in rural spaces / agrarian society.
In both these spaces, people have forgot old traditional knowledge and skills and have learned new knowledges and skills.
Moreover, what is interesting is the in both the spaces outcome has not only increased but have become qualitatively better.
Is it this in our memory that makes us feel panic about technology as teachers?
Have we turned technophobic because of this in our collective unconsciousness?
Are we more afraid of technology because it's intervention has bettered the outcome?
May be yes.
We question this because of collective memory.
We deny to accept that teachers can be replaced because we fear that it may give us incredible challenge. It may force us to increase and improvise on our teaching skills and knowledge of pedagogy. If we do not do so our unhoned skills and old knowledge will make us obsolete. We as teachers will soon be outdated and updated technology will replace such outdated teachers.
Teachers will have to remember and understand that Google is not their friend. It is an enemy. One shudder know the language and capacities of  an enemy. Today's teachers shall know the language and capacities of Google. And then master all Google can do . . .  And then go beyond what Google can do.
Google can give information. What Google cannot do is connect dots in such a way that innovation and creativity can be perceived.
Teachers should not be mere information giver. They shall be connectors of dots in this networked era.
Google is just a tip of iceberg so far as technology integration in real world is concerned
Lest much more advanced technology is surely going to replace teachers as it has replaced humans, unhoned skills and old knowledge in factories and agrarian society.


There are some interesting comments on this in Comments on this Facebook post:

Tuesday 10 January 2017

Hollywood, Foreigners, and the Press


(If you cannot view the video, click here to open in YouTube: )

Thank you, Meryl Streep for reminding that American multiculturalism is not only Salad Bowl but a Melting Pot where people around the globe has melted in one, global culture. It should have been an illustrious example for the world to follow in the 21st Century. . . and this is the right time to remind that we, as human beings, are regressing and disconnecting in the highly connected, networked world. We cannot allow a few groups of fanatics to make all of us fanatics. A few violent groups should not be victorious to make all think and speak the language of violence.
Whether the disabled reporter was mocked or not; what is important in the speech is a reminder about multi-nationality and multi-cultural identity of Hollywood.
 Thank you for this bold and brave pronouncement against Power. Your resistance will inspire and give confidence to many to who stood for the better world then what is unfolding in our times. 
Read full transcript here:
"Thank you very much. Thank you very much. Thank you. Please sit down. Please sit down. Thank you. I love you all. You'll have to forgive me. I've lost my voice in screaming and lamentation this weekend. And I have lost my mind sometime earlier this year. So I have to read.
Thank you, Hollywood foreign press. Just to pick up on what Hugh Laurie said. You and all of us in this room, really, belong to the most vilified segments in American society right now. Think about it. Hollywood, foreigners, and the press. But who are we? And, you know, what is Hollywood anyway? It's just a bunch of people from other places.
I was born and raised and created in the public schools of New Jersey. Viola [Davis] was born in a sharecropper's cabin in South Carolina, and grew up in Central Falls, Rhode Island. Sarah Paulson was raised by a single mom in Brooklyn. Sarah Jessica Parker was one of seven or eight kids from Ohio. Amy Adams was born in Italy. Natalie Portman was born in Jerusalem. Where are their birth certificates? And the beautiful Ruth Negga was born in Ethiopia, raised in -- no, in Ireland, I do believe. And she's here nominated for playing a small town girl from Virginia. Ryan Gosling, like all the nicest people, is Canadian. And Dev Patel was born in Kenya, raised in London, is here for playing an Indian raised in Tasmania.
Hollywood is crawling with outsiders and foreigners. If you kick 'em all out, you'll have nothing to watch but football and mixed martial arts, which are not the arts. They gave me three seconds to say this. An actor's only job is to enter the lives of people who are different from us and let you feel what that feels like. And there were many, many, many powerful performances this year that did exactly that, breathtaking, passionate work.
There was one performance this year that stunned me. It sank its hooks in my heart. Not because it was good. There was nothing good about it. But it was effective and it did its job. It made its intended audience laugh and show their teeth. It was that moment when the person asking to sit in the most respected seat in our country imitated a disabled reporter, someone he outranked in privilege, power, and the capacity to fight back. It kind of broke my heart when I saw it. I still can't get it out of my head because it wasn't in a movie. It was real life.
And this instinct to humiliate, when it's modeled by someone in the public platform, by someone powerful, it filters down into everybody's life, because it kind of gives permission for other people to do the same thing. Disrespect invites disrespect. Violence incites violence. When the powerful use their position to bully others, we all lose.
This brings me to the press. We need the principled press to hold power to account, to call them on the carpet for every outrage.That's why our founders enshrined the press and its freedoms in our constitution. So I only ask the famously well-heeled Hollywood Foreign Press and all of us in our community to join me in supporting the committee to protect journalists. Because we're going to need them going forward. And they'll need us to safeguard the truth.
One more thing. Once when I was standing around on the set one day whining about something, we were going to work through supper, or the long hours or whatever, Tommy Lee Jones said to me, isn't it such a privilege, Meryl, just to be an actor. Yeah, it is. And we have to remind each other of the privilege and the responsibility of the act of empathy. We should all be very proud of the work Hollywood honors here tonight.
As my friend, the dear departed Princess Leia, said to me once, take your broken heart, make it into art. Thank you."

Thursday 1 December 2016


Learning #snooker at Sir Bhavsinhji Tennis Club, Bhavnagar

Apart from Snooker, also tried these features of Google Plus Photo editing tools. This vidoe and the collage of image is created on Google Plus Photo App. Withing no time, one can create, add background music and upload video on YouTube.

Friday 4 November 2016

Harry Potter Film Series: Mini Reviews

Mini Reviews of Harry Potter Film Series

1) Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone

 Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (released in some countries as Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone) is a 2001 British-American fantasy film directed by Chris Columbus and distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures. It is based on the novel of the same name by J. K. Rowling. The film, the first instalment in the Harry Potter film series, was written by Steve Kloves and produced by David Heyman. The story follows Harry Potter's first year at Hogwarts as he discovers that he is a famous wizard and begins his magical education. (Wikipedia).

Mini Review: 

In a 2000 interview with the BBC, J.K. Rowling described Lord Voldemort as a self-hating #bully:"Well I think it is often the case that the biggest bullies take what they know to be their own defects, as they see it, and they put them right on someone else and then they try and destroy the other and that's what Voldemort does."


  • Children's literature looks better with gothic element. Owl, cat, night, uncanny old Dumbledore and monstrous Hagrid makes for an ideal gothic environment at the beginning of the film.
  • Putting little child (Harry) in the custody of maternal aunt-uncle by the trio of Dumbledore, Mcgonagall and Hagrid reminds of the birth of Jesus Christ and three Magi.
  • Magic can be seen as metaphor for knowledge.
  • However gifted one may be, struggle, pain, agony, sorrow, anxiety can never be avoided by magical wand. They are to be faced and won over.
  • Feminist reading may create doubt at the positive connotation of the term 'Wizard' and derogatory and negative connotation for 'Witch'.
  • Similarly, even though Hermione Granger is intelligent, saves day for the male counterparts, yet she remains 'bookish' and not having 'practical and worldly sense'. She herself says: "Books, cleverness. . . that's okay. There are more important things. Friendship, bravery". She seems to be incapable of sacrifice of Ron and bravery of Harry. She is good in the class and library work but not on the field - cannot perform well with broom and during Quidditch, she is mere spectator. This portrayal is highly problematic for feminist readers.
  •  The Sorting Hat finds Harry talented, good mind, and thirsty to prove himself. However, Snape snaps at him - 'Fame isn't everything'. One needs to prove one's worth. Harry reads newspaper while others read letters from family members.
  • Magical objects in this film - Stone (can make elixir of life to make one immortal), Cloak of invisibility, Mirror (one can see one's deepest desires, dreams and wants. Happiest one will see himself.
  • Political / Foucauldian discourse: There is no good or evil. There is only power: Voldemort.
  • Purity of Blood: "It is in your blood" - this is what makes Harry youngest seeker in the game of Quidditch. Well, that's not enough as Harry has to struggle to prove his worth. Harry makes 'choices'. He controls his destiny. That's why even Sorting Had cannot put him in Slytherin House and he, by sheer will-power, gets sorted for Gryffindor House. This 'making choices' and will-power is more important than blood.
  • Foreshadowing: Voldemort, in shape of smoke, passes through the heart of Harry Potter.
  • Moral Lessons: Only those who want but do not want to use for their personal benefit gets the stone (power, gift, geniusness); LOVE is one of the most powerful force in the universe. If this love is displayed along with 'sacrifice', it has power to make one immortal or save life from utmost dangers. Harry's mother Lily sacrificed herself for the sake of love for Harry. Ron is ready to sacrifice himself in the game of chess for good of others. At the end of the day, what makes one win is the combination of cool use of intellect (Hermione), ready to sacrifice everything (Ron), stand up against friends (Neville) and pure nerve & outstanding courage (Harry).

2) Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets movie.jpg
By Source, Fair use, Link

 Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets is a 2002 British-American fantasy film directed by Chris Columbus and distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures. It is based on the novel of the same name by J. K. Rowling. The film, which is the second instalment in the Harry Potter film series, was written by Steve Kloves and produced by David Heyman. The story follows Harry Potter's second year at Hogwarts as the Heir of Salazar Slytherin opens the Chamber of Secrets, unleashing a monster that petrifies the school's denizens. (Wikipedia)

Mini Review:

#ChildrensLiterature is accused of being replete with racism,xenophobia and conventional cultural overtones. J.K. Rowling plays safe and thus portrays her protagonists belonging to lowly births (Harry Potter is #HalfBloodHermione is #MudBlood) and villains and side-kicks wither of #PureBlood or shown craving for world order based on the #MasterRace(The master race was a concept in Nazi ideology in which the Nordic race—a branch of what in late-nineteenth and early-twentieth century taxonomy was called the Aryan race—represented an ideal and pure race.


  • The gothic characteristics of children's literature is maintained. Especially in Diagon Alley, when Harry mistakenly enters frightening alley, the people are frightening in looks, stare and behaviour.
  • Feminist critics may find more to criticise. Hermione is more capable in 'knowing' things and is capable to repair Harry's specs which can be read as 'she being his eyes/vision, without her, he in not capable to accomplish great deeds. However, she is also abused by Draco for being Mudblood / Dirty blood. Even the moanings of Myrtle and her infatuations for Harry may not go well with feminist critics. Most of the children's literature are boy-centric.
  • The concept of Purity of Blood gets stronger is very vocally voiced by Lucius Malfoy and Draco Malfoy, Weasleys do not discriminate. Ron's father Mr. Weasley is in trouble in Ministry for his liberal outlook. They are insulted by Malfoys for being liberal towards entry of Mudbloods in the school. This voice for purity of wizardry blood started with Salazar Slytherin and is carried forward by Voldemort and Malfoys. The main theme of this book / film is also to 'purge Hogwarts of muggle bloods'. As soon as the Chamber of Secrets is opened, the muggle bloods will be killed and only pure blood wizards will study in the school.
  • Voldemort is present in this book/film as 'memory / past' and his device is Diary. TOM MARVOLO RIDDLE is I AM LORD VOLDEMORT.
  • The power-politics operates in form of suspension of Albus Dumbledore and Hagrid sent to the prison of Azkaban.
  • The archetype of princess-abducted-by-monster-saved-by-Prince-Charming is narrated in Ginny's abduction and Harry's adventure to save her.
  • Harry and Voldemort are alter-ego, aks of each other. In determination, resourcefulness, disrespect for rules - they are similar.Voldemort's power is transferred to Harry when he gave scar to him. Though their abilities are similar, they are not similar as their choices are different.
  • Moral lesson: 
    • "Fame is fickle. Celebrity is as celebrity does" - Gilderoy Lockhart - Prof of Defence against Dark Arts.
    • "Help will be given to those who ask for it" - Dumbledore.
    • "Loyalty helps" - Phoenix 'Fawkes' comes to help Harry as he is loyal to Dumbledore.
    • "It is not our abilities, it is our choices that makes us what we are". Dumbledore to Harry.

3) Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban is a 2004 British fantasy filmdirected by Alfonso Cuarón and distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures. It is based on the novel of the same name by J. K. Rowling. The film, which is the third instalment in the Harry Potter film series, was written by Steve Kloves and produced by Chris Columbus (director of the first two instalments), David Heyman, and Mark Radcliffe. The story follows Harry Potter's third year at Hogwarts as he is informed that a prisoner named Sirius Black has escaped from Azkaban intending to kill him. (Wikipedia)

Mini Review:

If this film has @JKRowling's didacticism ("#Happiness can be found, even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light" . . . And . . . "It is only we who can help us, there is nothing/nobody outside of this world who can help us") at its best, at the same time, it is darker than earlier films. Even Harry Potter's dark side, first time, is visible: "I hope Sirius Black finds me, when he does, I am going to kill him".
Well, it's fine to show the struggle between the good and and the evil. It works in children's literature. In 'real' literature , the struggle is Not with evil power but with the power which turns the victim into evil.


  • The major task was to clear Sirius Blake from being a murderer who has broke Azkaban Prison is on hunt to kill Harry. In fact he was a good friend and godfather of Harry.
  • This book / film is darker as compared to previous ones. Harry also is vengeful to kill Sirius without knowing the fact. It seems as if the darkness of Voldemort's power in his body forces him to be evil.
  • The way news-paper Daily Prophet keeps on spreading rumors about Sirius Blake, it becomes an example of how media is unreliable in our times.
  • Dementors are curious creatures - they are non-forgiving and can't distinguish between good and evil or protected and hunted. They suck soul and makes people energy-less to die helplessly. They are frightened by or overcome by powerful positive memory of something extremely good. Our pain, sorrow, anxiety becomes their power.
  • Pro. Lupin in new teacher of Defence against Dark Arts - he remembers Harry's mother having ability to see beauty, good and positive in all, whereas his father has excellent magical skills and also talent for trouble. Harry has both these characteristics.
  • Some interesting objects - Marauder's Map, Boggarts, Hippogriff (flying horse), Animagus and Werewolf.
  • For feminist critics, this book / novel offers something worth appreciating. Ron is in bed and Hermione is in control of situation. With the help of time-turner, she leads Harry (who follows) in revisiting and amending past actions.She know that one should be cautious and careful while meddling with time. She convinces Harry that it was not his father's charm/spell but his spell that saves Sirius from Dementors. 
  • Moral Lesson:
    • "Happiness can be found in darkest of time, if we remember to turn on the light" - Dumbledore.
    • "A child's voice, however, true, is meaningless to those who have stopped listening" - DUmbledore.
    • "It is wisest to retrace steps (go back, go back in memory, check your steps, observe your past actions), when in doubt" - Dumbledore
    • "No divine, no dead ones, no loved ones comes to save us. It is we who save us". The patronus of Doe is just an illusion of Harry. In fact, he has performed the spell to expel dementors.

4) Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire is a 2005 British fantasy film directed by Mike Newell and distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures.[2] It is based on the novel of the same name by J. K. Rowling. The film, which is the fourth instalment in the Harry Potter film series, was written by Steve Kloves and produced by David Heyman. The story follows Harry Potter's fourth year at Hogwarts as he is chosen by the Goblet of Fire to compete in the Triwizard Tournament. (Wikipedia)

Mini Review:

In Harry Potter series, Lord Voldemort and his followers are prejudiced against #Muggles and in 'Goblet of Fire' Hermione Granger forms a group to liberate Hogwarts' house-elves who have "been indentured servants so long they lack desire for anything else". This is not major part of this book / film. 
When asked why she explored this theme, Rowling replied, "Because bigotry is probably the thing I detest most. All forms of intolerance, the whole idea of that which is different from me is necessarily evil. I really like to explore the idea that difference is equal and good."
Bigot = somebody with strong opinions, especially on politics, religion, or ethnicity, who refuses to accept different views.
This book / film is mostly about TriWizard tournament.


  • This book / film deals with an interesting transition from children's literature to young adult literature.
  • This book / film sees the rise of the Dark Lord with the help of Bone of Father, unwillingly taken; Flesh of the Servant, willingly sacrifices, and Blood of an Enemy, forcibly taken.
  • Three events are played in Triwizard tournament. 
    • (1) Save the golden egg from dragon 
    • (2) Save friends from beneath the Black Lake
    • (3) Search for the Cup in the Maze
  • The growing up of all characters form childhood to teenage is captured in form of love interest and jealousy. The Yule Ball is specially for teenage sentiments.
  • The range of characters include people from black community, Patil sisters from India, Cho from China.
  • For the feminist critic, the entire concept of Ball and the way pairing happened may give some points of contention. Especially, there is more stress on the physical beauty of girls and macho-image of boys. The dark skinned girls are the last ones to be taken by boys and that too do not carry any sense of pride. The gender and racism underplays very strongly in this sequence.
  • In media studies, Rita Skeeter is introduced as a sort of Page 3 journalism - it loves to publish sensational news about people's affairs and similar fake stories.
  • Moral Lessons:
    • Harry;s priorities are to help people in need rather than to win competition.
    • Even if other students insult Harry as he competes with same school guy Cedric, he is ready to help him in the hours of need.
    • Harry also saves Fleur Delacour's 's sister from Black Lake and brings bad dead body of Cedric from the graveyard of Voldemort.
    • His outstanding moral fiber makes him stand second in second round of competition. He is certified as kind, honest, brave and true by Dumbledore.
    • No spell can reawaken the dead. Do not think that parents came to save you in the fight with Voldemort. It was in inner voice which he thought mother told to 'let go', father told to get hold of port-key and Cedric to take his dead body back to his father.
    • Difficult time comes ahead and it will be challenging to make choices between what is easy and what is right.

5) Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix is a 2007 British fantasy film directed by David Yates and distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures. It is based on the novel of the same name by J. K. Rowling. The film, which is the fifth instalment in the Harry Potter film series, was written by Michael Goldenberg (making this the only film in the series not to be scripted by Steve Kloves) and produced by David Heyman and David Barron. The story follows Harry Potter's fifth year at Hogwarts as the Ministry of Magic is in denial of Lord Voldemort's return.(Wikipedia)

Mini Review:

Dolores Umbridge is newly appointed Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher, as a part of larger schema - from the corrupt Ministry of Magic. She comes up with new rules to 'prohibit' demonstrations and teach theoretically only. New syllabus, new books are introduced. She implements medieval discipline and punishment. The students resist. She considers resistance as disloyalty. Harry Potter openly speaks up the truth. He is forced to write on his hand that "I must not tell lies".
How interesting! Unbelievable parallels!
"There is, in fact, no need to drag politics into literary theory . . . it has been there from the beginning" ― Terry Eagleton, Literary theory: An Introduction.


  • This part is very meaningful from the perspective of power-politics. Dumbledore is charged with conspiracy and sedition.
  • One of the techniques used to make us feel pity for protagonist Harry is his orphanage and mother's Muggle-blood. We have seen many 'using' their lowly birth to pity self and so to generate sympathy for themselves.
  • The hearing of Harry's expulsion from school as he used magic in muggle-world is highly charged with political signs. The time of preponed, Dumbledore was not informed about timings, newspaper Daily Prophet used to malign Harry's reputation, use of rules / laws to harass those not in power.
  • Dumbledore is able to prove that Harry's use of magic in real world is pardonable under the rule of 'life-threatening' situation. Dementors' attack was life threatening.
  • 'Truth will be out'. Only truth prevails. These are the moralities of the muggles. Those who are wizards they believe that someone will have to 'act' so that truth can be out or prevail. It is not going to prevail without human efforts.
  • Dolores Umbridge is used by J.K. Rowling to attack all those regressive reformists in education system. Even if Harry is right about Voldemort, she punishes him to write 'I will not tell lies'. She discourages progress. She is for preservation of past. She believes in prohibitions, decency in cloths and behaviour. She is for theoretical exams rather than practical. It is through her that Ministry interferes Hogwarts schooling system. 
  • Harry Potter displays modesty. He told others that he is not chosen one but luck favoured him in moments of crisis and there were people who helped him.
  • Room of Requirement can be seen as metaphor of we get in the real world what we dearly want.
  • Legilimency and OcclumencyLegilimency is the act of magically navigating through the many layers of a person's mind and correctly interpreting one's findings. The opposite of Legilimency is Occlumency, which is used to shield one's mind from the invasion and influence of a Legilimens.
  • He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss also gazes into you - (Nietzsche). Harry fears becoming like Voldemort.
  • When Harry fears that he is becoming / behaving like Voldemort, Sirius Blake: "There are people who are good and those who are Death Eaters. What matter is what we choose to act on. Even those who are good are both good and bad inside / within.
  • Dolores replaces art, memory, history from the wall and the wall is full with 'rules'.
  • Prophecy (glass-globe) - It can be retrieved only by those for whom it is. "Neither cna live while other survives" - is the prophecy.
  • Harry has something which (with all similarities) Voldemort does not have - "Friends". 
  • Moral Lessons:
    • Fear makes us do terrible things.
    • Working hard is important. But there’s something that matters even more. Believing in yourself. (All wizards need to believe in themselves to make spell work and that's true of all humans.)
    • It does not matter whether we are good or bad. All are good as well as bad. What matters is what we choose to be / choose to act on.
    • Things we loose have a way of coming back to us (Self-help).

6) Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince is a 2009 British-American fantasy film directed by David Yates and distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures. It is based on the novel of the same name by J. K. Rowling. The film, which is the sixth instalment in the Harry Potter film series, was written by Steve Kloves and produced by David Heyman and David Barron. The story follows Harry Potter's sixth year at Hogwarts as he becomes obsessed with a mysterious textbook, falls in love, and attempts to retrieve a memory that holds the key to Lord Voldemort's downfall. (Wikipedia)

Mini Review:

#Memory is tempered. It is tempered by the person whose memory it is.
But why would he temper his memory?
I suspect he's ashamed of it.
This memory is everything. Without it we are blind. Without it, we leave the fate of our world to chance. (Dialogue between Prof. Albus Dumbledore and Harry Potter.)


  • This book / film, prepares for the Deathly Hallows. There are lot many loose threads.
  • If half-blood is to be read as children of those parents who are not pure-blood. One of the parents is either muggle-born, then the children can be derogatorily called half-blood. Severus Snape, Voldemort and Harry Potter can claim to be titular Half-Blood Prince. However, the book which bears the name of Half-Blood Prince belongs to Severus Snape.
  •  Draco, like his father, becomes Death Eaters i.e. member of Voldemort team.
  • Memory, revisiting memory, preserving memory - one of the task of this part is to get secret from the memory of Slughorn, the prof of the Defence against the Dark Art.
  • Feminist critic may object to 'skin' reference for the beauty of Hermione and other girls.
  • The girls are reduced to 'love-object'. The role of Hermione and other girls are almost insignificant in something serious done by Harry. Petty rivalry among girls for boys.
  • Love - interest, envy, jealousy for partner.
  • Horcrux is introduced in this book. It is from the memory of Slughorn that Harry comes to know about Tom Riddle's desire to learn about Horcrux.
  • Dumbledore sacrifices his life. Snape kills him.
  • Moral Lessons:
    • Those who are ashamed of memory, temper their memories. Memory is everything. Without memory we are blind. Without memory we leave the fate of our world to chance.
    • There can be no light without dark. Slughorn.


Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1 is a 2010 British-American fantasy film directed by David Yates and distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures. It is the first of two cinematic parts based on the novel by J. K. Rowling. The film, which is the seventh and penultimate instalment in the Harry Potter film series, was written by Steve Kloves and produced by David HeymanDavid Barron, and Rowling. (Wikipedia)

Mini Review:

As soon as the new ministry of Magic (under the influence of Lord Voldemort) takes charge, they start persecuting #MudBloods. 'Mudbloods and the Dangers They Pose to a Peaceful Pure-Blood Society' is a pamphlet that was printed and distributed enmasse and contained propaganda against Muggle-borns, disparagingly referred to as "Mudbloods". The pamphlets were pink, with the title in orange letters. Beneath the title was a picture of "a red rose with a simpering face in the middle of its petals, being strangled by a green weed with fangs and a scowl". Evidently, this was the metaphor the Death Eater-controlled Ministry wanted to make regarding Muggle-borns being allowed into the wizarding world, which they believed should be reserved for pure-bloods. Presumably, the pamphlet also perpetrated the bigoted belief that Muggle-borns are inferior to those with wizarding heritage.


  • Three objects i.e. Elder Wand, Resurrection Stone and Cloak of Invisibility are Deathly Hallows. The one who owns it is the Master of Death.
  • Harry’s task: To find the ‘Locket – Horcrux’ and destroy it with Gryffindor Sword. To know about Deathly Hallows.
  • Ministry announces about the darker times. The Mudbloods are in panic. They are attacked by Death Eaters.
  • Voldemort is personally present as Lord Voldemort. Convenes meeting of Death Eaters. Actively searches for Elder Wand. Finds it from the grave of Dumbledore wherein it was buried with him.
  • Dumbledore's legacy - Deluminator to Ron, Book of Tales to Hermione and Snitch with stone to Harry.
  • The Snatchers: Scabior - arrests, roundup muggleborn and blood traitors who as per new law are defined as 'outlaws'.
  • The Ministry of Magic imposes new rules. What was done by Dolorus in school - is implemented in society. What begins with the change in text books, ends with the amendments in Constitution. 
  • Horcrux: Slytherin’s Locket. Destroyed by Ron with the help of Gryffindor Sword found by Harry from the frozen pond with the help of Doe’s Patronus
  • Ministry’s discrimination for Mud-bloods implies the dangers of Master Race – Pure Blood people and their discrimination of ‘Others’ irrespective of ‘acts / karma’ of people. Perseverance and skill (Harry rewarded with Snitch for this)
  • Hermione is actively involved in the search for the locker-horcrux. She helps in hide-outs and understanding the story of Three Brothers and Death.
  • She is yet again used as bone of contention between two friends – an archetype of femme fatal.
  • Her body is objectified in dream sequence of Ron while destroying Locket-Horcrux. She is sleeping while the boys perform imp task of destroying.
  • Evil breeds evil. Locket feels the beholder with negativity.
  • Freedom is valuable (Dobby dies happily as friend rather than elf-slave)
  • We have nothing to fear if we have nothing to hide.
Close-up of the statue showing Muggles in their "rightful" place


Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2

A girl and two boys, standing outside of a building with high turrets.
By Source, Fair use, Link
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 is a 2011 British fantasy film directed by David Yates and distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures.[4] It is the second of two cinematic parts based on the novel Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J. K. Rowling.[5] The film, which is the eighth and final installment in the Harry Potter film series, was written by Steve Klovesand produced by David HeymanDavid Barron, and Rowling. It is the sequel to Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1. The story continues to follow Harry Potter's quest to find and destroy Lord Voldemort's Horcruxes in order to stop him once and for all.

Mini Review:

#SelfHelp culture of our days serves as a tool of social control: it soothes political unrest . . . one blames oneself for not getting better off is society and remains in one's own pursuit of self-invention, blaming oneself for the failure rather than the systems.
The Harry Potter saga approves of this cultural phenomenon of late 20th century which continues in our days. It ends with some cliche positive attitude lessons.
"Help will always be given to those who ask for it"
This is rephrased: "Help will always be given to those who deserve it" - making it more politically correct for majoritarianism.


  • Harry’s task:To destroy Horcruxes like Cup, Diadem, Nagini. He realises that he is also horcrux and will have to face death.
  • Wandlore - Mr. Ollivander.
  • Voldemort is personally present and leads the death eaters in the War.
  • Horcrux: Cup is destroyed by Hermione with the fang. Diadem of destroyed by Harry with the help of Basilisk’s Fang and kicked by Ron into Fire. Nagini is killed by Neville Longbottom Harry is killed / fainted by Voldemort. (Other Horcruxes destroyed in other books - Diary by Harry, Locket by Ron & Ring by Dumbledore)
  • Help will be given to those who deserve. Do not pity the dead. Pity the living. And above all, those who live without love. Quality of one’s convictions determine, not the followers. 
  • The real battle in within – with oneself. Some battles are fought all alone. Death is beautiful, not painful. Words have magic. They are the curse, they the remedy.
  • Hermione plays significant role in the beginning – finds a way out of deep vault with the help dragon. She destroys Cup-horcrux.
  • Invincibility vs humane quality. Invincibility breeds ego; humanity led to ego-less-ness. Purging of the evil within in the most important and equally difficult because ‘evil grows and homes that dark corner where ‘we do not know what we do not know’.
  • Help will always given to those who are for it.
  • Words re not in my humble opinion our most inexhaustible source of magic. Words are capable of both - inflicting injury and remedying it.
  • Help will always be granted to those who deserve it.
  • Do not pity the dead. Pity the living . . . and all those who lived without love.
  • Harry is one of the Horcruxes -  what does it signify?
  • Evil breeds evil. Too much of looking into the dark makes darkness enter into your soul. Friedrich Nietzsche has rightly observed - Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And if you gaze long enough into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you. Well, the darkness has entered into Harry, symbolically speaking. One has to face death to purge this dark evil. Death is the ultimate thing that purges from all evils. (Symbolic submerged into water is also a sort of death or fire is also considered to have purging powers. We have rituals around water and fire). One may reawaken or rise or resurrect if evil has entered in pursuit of good i.e. selfless love for friends & family, society, human beings at large, irrespective of enemies. If craving for death of others signify evil, then helping others redeems. Harry, in his brief sleep-talk with Dumbledore, is not shouting for revenge. He is calm and sombre. That is sign of his purging from evil and becoming good.
  •  Confronting reality through Fantasy: Last conversation between Dumbledore and Harry: Is this all real? Or is it just happening inside my head? Of course it's happening inside your head, Harry. Why should that mean that it's not real?