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The Decibel

Harry Potter and the controversial author


The world of Harry Potter – which now extends from books to movies, theme parks, spin-offs, merchandise, and a vast amount of fan-generated content called “fanfic”– has been beloved since the first book was published more than 20 years ago.

But in recent years, this world’s creator, author J.K. Rowling, has been making statements against trans activists, and sometimes raising the possibility of violence from someone who identifies as trans.

Culture critic and founder of Friday Things Stacy Lee Kong explains how “Potterheads” have reacted to Rowling’s controversial comments, how the books’ legacy endures, and how HBO Max dealt with it in their special, Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts.