Monday, February 6, 2012

The Sneaky Uncertainty of Voldemort.

Through out the Harry Potter series, Voldemort always seems to have this very mysterious quality about him that makes him terrifying. No one ever knows how power he is. Is he alive, is he dead? Is he even human? This is especially relevant in "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows" because Voldemort becomes so powerful, but no one knows exactly how powerful because he works through various people rather then just going out and just shouting "hey world, I'm back, I'm in charge of the ministry of magic and if you aren't pure blood you are going to die." Obviously I'm kidding, but really, if he wanted to he could tell everyone he was in charge and no one could do anything about it because he has the ministry under his control.

Instead of openly killing all the muggles and muggle-borns, the ministry passes laws putting anyone who is muggle born through a trial which will most likely have them end up in Askaban. There is no real proof that Voldemort is behind this, though as the reader it seems safe to assume. That however is the problem, you are assuming, not certain. In life, when something is not certain the imagination is left to wander and wonder. Much more powerful then solid facts even if the facts work against you. Solid facts you can hold on to and figure things out with. Uncertainty is no help. The wizards aren't sure who is on Voldemort's side and who they can trust so no one can help them. Then, there is whispered gossip about Voldemort. I think that gossip is just uncertainty in a more real form. A form that can be passed on and changed causing misinformation. Like when you are little and play "telephone." You start with one word but end with another. I think Voldemort knows this and won't go out and say what the word is but passes it around knowing that it will change and become more deadly.


  1. I agree with you! Voldemort doesn't have to spread "rumors" or be the cause of every bad thing that occurs in the book. He thrives best living on people's fear. He doesn't have to do much to scare people. This shows that he is truly evil.

  2. I agree with you. Voldemort was terrifying in the sense of a psychopath. The fact that he could turn on anyone, at any moment makes his seem absolutely cruel. Nice job.

  3. I actually have been pretty curious. Do you think voldemort is supposed to symbolize evil itself or is there human in him? After all, he was a child once.

    1. I believe that once when the Dark Lord was younger he had the potential to become a wizard who would be on the side of "good". However, since he was raised in a orphanage which was probably neglectful (It's been proven that orphanages can cause delayed development in children) and already had the odds of being "good" against him (he was born of a loveless union) it was all to easy for him to stray down the wrong path with no one to show him the right things. I've actually always felt sorry for Tom Riddle because of this, instead of blindly hating him.
      I think Voldemort is the example of a young boy who had enormous potential that was wasted by the seduction of immortality and power.

    2. I agree with Micah! I do understand why Voldemort was angry, and honestly, I don't blame him for being angry. I certainly would have been angry if I had grown up in a loveless-as Micah describes-environment.

    3. Well Harry didn't exactly grow up in a loving home either and he obviously turned out quite different. I also think Dumbledore tried to help Tom Riddle so, he was helped. I know this sounds awful, but maybe some people are just born with more "evil" inside them others. In a different situation Voldemort may have been different, but I think some people just respond to a bad situation worse than others.

    4. Well I believe that the young Voldemort's situation may have been worse than Harry's. As I mentioned earlier, it's the theory of many Harry Potter fantics (including myself) that the fact that he was conceived as a result of a consummation that had no real love, but love that was made of a potion definitely had a hand in creating his loveless personality. So already, from birth he has a strike against him for being on the "good" side.

      Also, people react differently to abuse or neglect, so while Harry may have just taken it and not have put up a fuss, I would imagine that Tom Riddle would loathe every single moment of it with his entire being (and rightly so, might I add) and plan how to exact revenge. And seeing as how, he's more powerful than Harry his actions would have greater repercussions. So if Harry tried to get vengeance on the Dursley family, it probably wouldn't have had the same ramifications as Tom's hypothetical retaliation plan. Tom didn't want to be hurt, so he would hurt people back before they could again. (Remember these are just my personal theories, not anything stated in the text. But it is based on what I've read in the books).

      What we see of a young Tom in the Half-Blood Prince is a lonely, power-hungry little boy who already displays slight psychopathic tendencies (although not nearly as much as the 16-year old and adult versions of himself). However, he was still young and moldable and could be persuaded to not continue with his destructive walk into hell. But no one came to the rescue. He had no one to show him the light, so to speak and Tom had to rely on himself. He saw the easiest way of doing so would be by using the Dark Arts and therefore sought to educate himself on the topic.

      And why you may argue that Dumbledore "tried to show him the light, etc..." I think that's sadly not the case. "Dumbledore never seemed to like me as much as the other teachers did..." (COS, p. 312). Now is it just me, but wouldn't it be smarter to try and stop someone from delving into the Dark Arts if you suspect them of be seduced by the knowledge and power it has to offer? Especially if that child is powerful and has the ability to do a lot of damage with the Dark Arts. That would be the wiser alternative, than just letting the boy become more and more corrupted! Professor Dumbledore could've at least tried to get the boy to find peace and happiness with the world. Instead, he judged him based on ONE encounter where the pair exchanged just a few words. What's that old saying? Oh yeah, DON'T JUDGE A BOOK BY IT'S COVER. For all you knew, there was a sweet little boy who just wanted to be happy, locked away inside Tom's cold exterior and didn't know how to come out, but Dumbledore never took the chance to find out.

      While the actions Tom and his future self would do are not entirely justifiable, I think I can understand why he made the choices he did and empathize with him.

    5. First of all, nice essay Micah (no seriously, it's amazingly well written and informed, especially considering you're not in the Harry Potter Book Club).

      And I totally agree, people react to things in different ways. Everyone is different, in their personalities, their upbringings, their friends, etc. Your environment and the way you are naturally have a great affect on how you take news compared to different people. While, of course, Voldemort's actions are not condoned by the fact that he had a bad childhood, they are an explanation behind who he is as a person and the way he handles situations.

      Also, Tom Riddle was raised without parents, in a loveless orphanage. Petunia and Vernon might have neglected him and treated him poorly, but I do believe that they always loved him - they're his blood family after all.