Tuesday, October 23, 2007

JK Rowling sends Dumbledore out of the closet

Most fans applaud Rowling's outing of Dumbledore | Lifestyle | Living | Reuters

When I saw the news, rather, when this news was thrust in front of me, I felt weird. This is probably one of the most bizarre moments I've come across. Media channels across the world are giving so much attention to the sexual orientation of a fictional character. I'd seen Jay Leno joke about Teletubbies being gay and all that - but if Rowling has to say this with a straight face, I suppose it speaks much of the times we live in.

I'm personally indifferent to these things. What a person does in his/her privacy is none of my business - is how I look at it. But in popular discourse (movies, sitcoms and the like) homosexuals are seen as different people, or people with some disability or something like that. I don't know if I've come across any gay person knowingly during my life in the US or in India for that matter) but that's probably because I was/am too indifferent (or clueless - depending on how you look at it) towards this "special characteristic". Most people are just people to me.

Rather than wonder about why Rowling did it, we have to look at the media response to this comment. What if Rowling had said instead, that Dumbledore had had a love affair with Minerva McGonagall? Would it have been as news worthy?

I have a theory on why Rowling said whatever she said. She probably watched Gandalf - the originally famous wizard on the Lord of the Rings, admirably played in the movie trilogy by Ian McKellen - who is known to be gay. And so, when she wrote her seventh book, she unconsciously or consciously modeled Dumbledore after the real life Gandalf. Anyway, that is just my theory!

There have been people who have liked this statement from Rowling. And some who have not. I think that the statement was completely unnecessary. If she hadn't made that statement, I wouldn't have to write this post!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

True. People just like gossip. Who they gossip about does not matter.