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Thread: Ridding the Dementors

  1. #11
    Seventh Year Ravenclaw
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    clabbert2101's Avatar
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    May 2006
    Quote Originally Posted by Tim the Enchanter
    But if Dementors feed on happy emotions, and force people to relive terrible memories, wouldn't Dementors be more likely to multiply in areas with lots of emotion and excitement, not "despair and degradation"?
    I've always been puzzled by the idea of Dementors 'feeding' on happy memories in the first place. If that was true, how could Patronuses, conjured of happy memories, drive them off?

    I've always thought it more likely Dementors feed on the despair people, drawing out their worst memories and forcing people to relive them until they simply can't remember what it's like to be happy. I know that's not quite how the process is described in the books, but the effect is the same, and I think it might just be two different ways of explaining the same thing.

    If that's the case, then an excess of 'despair and degradation' would be beneficial to the Dementors, and by simply hanging around they would increase their own 'food' source.


  2. #12
    Hmm, yet another debate to be added to this newly revived thread. Does anyone know for certain whther it is happy memories or sad ones that Dementors feed on?

  3. #13
    Fifth Year Slytherin
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    Annalise28's Avatar
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    Sep 2009
    Procrastination Central.
    Hmm, yet another debate to be added to this newly revived thread. Does anyone know for certain whther it is happy memories or sad ones that Dementors feed on?
    I am not certain but I remember Lupin telling Harry that the reason the Dementor's attacked him so strongly and the reason he fainted was because he had so much despair in his life.

    So, does that mean: he had so many bad memories that the Dementor's acted upon him stronger than others, or: he fainted because he had so much despair in his life?

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  4. #14
    Finest Firewhisky
    I think it's explicitly stated than a Dementor feeds on happy memories, leaving you with your despair. Sirius says that one thing that kept him sane in Azkaban was the thought he knew he was innocent, and "That wasn't a happy thought, so the Dementors couldn't suck it out of me". The dementors don't deliberately attack Harry because he has worse memories, it's just that those memories make the dementor's effects more pronounced.

    In the movies, this is made much clearer, and Lupin says a shield - form Patronus works by getting the Dementor to feed off of it and not the caster.

    I think a fully-formed Patronus can drive down a Dementor by overwhelming it with emotion. Like how a person needs plenty of water to survive, but can still drown.

    Also, about killing them, I think a Dementor can starve, which is why they are so hungry. There are things in the HP universe which can live forever, most notably pheonixes.

    My two knuts.

  5. #15
    I don't know how much I want to take what happens in the movies as canon. I always got the impression that channeling strong happy memories could fight a dementor off, but weak, distant happy memories become Dementor food. In my mind, Dementors draw out the misery so the victim focuses on that and lets their happy memories go. If a victim can choose to grab onto their happy memories, owning those memories and defining themselves by them, they can chase attacking Dementors away. Looking at it from this way, Dementors would be drawn to people in fear and despair.

    I like Inverarity's conception of Dementors as the embodiment of that fear and despair, rather than as a biological species. I could easily see them multiplying in situations of great trouble.

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