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Review: J.K. Rowling’s new piece gives fascinating background to Harry Potter character

J.K. Rowling attends the opening of The Anne Rowling Regenerative Neurology Clinic on Oct. 8, 2013 at Edinburgh University in Edinburgh, U.K. Credit: Courtesy of TNS

J.K. Rowling attends the opening of The Anne Rowling Regenerative Neurology Clinic on Oct. 8, 2013 at Edinburgh University in Edinburgh, U.K.
Credit: Courtesy of TNS

It might have been a series of simple children’s book, but its conflicts between “purebloods” and “mudbloods” were also filled with allegories of racism and the causes of such bigotry.

Now years after the War for Hogwarts was won, author J.K. Rowling has released a story that brings those issues back to the surface, and reexamines the motives of one of Harry Potter’s most detestable villains.

For all of you who have read “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix,” the new writing pertains to the background of Dolores Umbridge and can be viewed on Pottermore.

We all know her as the infamous High Inquisitor of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, but we never knew the reasons behind her sadistic motives. Rowling’s new writing, “Dolores Jane Umbridge,” answers many mysterious questions pertaining to Umbridge’s background. We learn of her low-life father, Muggle mother and an estranged brother (a Squib ­— born to magical parents but doesn’t have magical powers), all of which led to her narrow-mindedness of the world.

Her parents’ unhappy marriage and both her father and Dolores’ dislike of being ‘half-blood’ led her to disown her family. We find out how she obtained a job at the Ministry of Magic and the manipulative ways in which she uses people of authority in her favor.

Does Umbridge receive punishment for her cruel forms of torture at Hogwarts and the Ministry? Why does she wear all that pink? Where did J.K. Rowling form her idea for Umbridge? Questions like this and more have been answered.

While this background of Dolores might only be a few pages, it gives the reader a deeper insight into her mind and why she views the world in the way that she does. The article does not go into deep detail about her past, but it doesn’t need to because its purpose was to give a background on Dolores that is sufficient to answer any questions.

Rowling does a fine job of emphasizing the point that, despite Dolores’ upbringing and her cruel nature, she is still a clever and talented witch.

Readers who enjoy Rowling’s writing and creative characters will most definitely appreciate the details that have been put in about Umbridge’s past and the lines connecting all the events at Hogwarts associated with her to the events of her past.

The story content was clearly well-thought out and developed to explain many of the events that took place in “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix” — and a few events in the other books, as well. Dolores Umbridge’s past is fascinating and provides fans a glimpse into one of the many interesting characters in the Harry Potter series — and a glimpse into the imaginative mind of J.K. Rowling.

3 comments

  1. Wonerful, can hardly wait.

  2. great i love harry potter

  3. That is cool that the author explores some secondary character. It makes the universe of Harry Potter more consistent like Tolkien did with Lords of the Rings.

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