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Thread: Severus Snape - Part III

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  1. #1
    Honigkuchenpferd Hufflepuff
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    Severus Snape - Part III

    The old thread got filled up with an awesome discussion, so here we go with a new thread. Keep discussing the good old Potions Master.

    For reference:

    Severus Snape

    Severus Snape - Part II
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  2. #2
    Vorona
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    In my opinion, it would be silly for Rowling, as a writer, to put in all kinds of scenes about Snape's complex relationship to Muggles and Muggleborns in a series that is about Harry Potter's defeat of the Dark Lord. Even if some of us (or perhaps just me) think the series would have been better if it was about Snape rather than Harry, it isn't. She doesn't have the pages to give Snape the amount of depth needed.

    I'm not discounting the fact that he obviously didn't have a problem with the anti-Muggle opinion of the other Slytherins. What I am discounting is the notion that he hated Muggles or Muggleborns. That he hated certain Muggles or Muggleborns, sure. But he also hated Purebloods like James Potter and Sirius Black. He hated lots of people. I'm not convinced, by the evidence we have, the he hated Muggles or Muggleborns on the whole. Again, hatred is a really strong emotion, and Snape's actions about Muggles/Muggleborns seem to be more dismissive/apathetic than hate-filled.

    Because Jo did not fill us in on his emotional state, it's clear to me that the evidence is not conclusive, but merely suggestive. Where one takes it (hatred or apathy) is up to individual readers.

    As for Snape/Hermione -- I don't remember Krum being described as handsome. Famous, yes, but I was under the opinion that he was kind of ugly. And rather Snape-like as well (particularly the hooked nose). She ended up attracted to him because he was intelligent and interested in studying, not because he was famous or attractive. But I agree that I don't see many reasons for teacher!Snape to be attracted sexually to student!Hermione. She is really annoying as a student.

    As for what to call the ship, I just go with Hermione/Snape or SS/HG. I don't think all ships need a single name.

  3. #3
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    Again, hatred is a really strong emotion, and Snape's actions about Muggles/Muggleborns seem to be more dismissive/apathetic than hate-filled.
    And yet, Snape, who is a very intelligent person, joined a sect whose whole existence is geared towards the non-existence of Muggle-borns and the subjugation of Muggles. And he didn't join one that would destroy pure-bloods like James and Sirius who he had far more valid reasons to hate.

    Although Voldemort may not have revealed the true extent of his policies, Sirius says his parents and others would have been in favour of his 'ideals'. I refuse to believe that Snape would have been so naive as to think it was a lovely little gang that sat around drinking tea and eating cucumber sandwiches whilst discussing 'what on earth to do with those pesky oiks that call themselves wizards when they're plainly not of our class, old bean.'

    I don't think Krum is descibed as ugly. Flat-footed, and with a beaky nose. But the term 'brooding' is used about him, and from the posters at the Tri-Wizard tournament, he's clearly some kind of stud. It may just be because he's famous, but that also sets a pattern for Hermione. She is very, very, occasionally dazzled by someone (coughLockhart as Ron says) ... and not for their intelligence. I can't see her lusting after Snape when she's a pupil, but in an AU world I could see her being attracted to him through his mind and also the fact that she'd probably want to redeem him.

    In my opinion, it would be silly for Rowling, as a writer, to put in all kinds of scenes about Snape's complex relationship to Muggles and Muggleborns in a series that is about Harry Potter's defeat of the Dark Lord.
    Yes, but if she wanted to imply that Snape secretly harboured feelings of great love towards Muggles, then she could have added an extra hundred words in The Princes Tale - she didn't. Perhaps that's a grave mistake on her part, but perhaps the story of his reversal from Death Eater to Phoenix convert is far greater because of the long road he travelled. If he'd always thought sympathetically about Muggles and Muggle-borns he would not have become a Death Eater, would he?

    Even if some of us (or perhaps just me) think the series would have been better if it was about Snape rather than Harry, it isn't. She doesn't have the pages to give Snape the amount of depth needed.
    I doubt it's just you, but a series of seven books about Severus Snape and his obsessive love wouldn't have appealed to children very much who tend to think of love and kissing as 'really icky.'

    I doubt we'll ever agree. I think Snape is a fabulous character, and his depth is through his redemption, but I can't get past the fact that he was a) a Death Eater by his own volition and b) he was so nasty to poor old Neville.

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  4. #4
    Vorona
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    You may be right in that we'll probably never agree. But I think you're misunderstanding something I'm trying to say here. I am NOT saying that Snape harboured any love (great or otherwise) for OR "always thought sympathetically" about Muggles/Muggleborns. I'm simply saying that he's not very passionate about the issue. He doesn't really give a d***.

    To be honest, I think we may be more in agreement than we think. For one thing, I completely agree that Snape's progression is much more fascinating if he starts out pretty evil, and then comes to the good side. I also agree that it would be absurd to suggest that he actually cared about or wanted to protect Muggles/Muggleborns at that point in his life. You're absolutely right: Rowling would have had to include something in order to support that view. But that's not what I'm saying here.

    I'm saying he didn't hate them. To me, I think he was merely indifferent, which I actually think is worse than outright hatred, because it's much more calculating and cruel. I think he probably joined the Death Eaters NOT because he bought into the whole Muggle/Muggleborn agenda, but because he saw it as a path to power and forbidden knowledge. I think he was deeply fascinated with the Dark Arts, and he also knew that he would only ever be "merely tolerated" in favor of people like Sirius and James if he went with the side of good. He was out for power and knowledge, and there happened to be a Dark group with a charismatic leader looking for new members. It probably seemed like a dream come true to him. Yeah, they were persecuting Muggles and Muggleborns, but he wasn't going to let that get in his way of his goals. If torturing them helped him achieve his ends, so be it. That's not hatred, though; that's opportunism. And Snape is nothing if not opportunistic. Heck, maybe he even had twinges of guilt . . . or maybe he didn't. We don't get to see that. Don't forget that he's a Slytherin. A Gryffindor or Hufflepuff might join the Death Eaters out of hatred or agreement with a cause (i.e. the right thing to do, in their minds); a Slytherin would do it to further their own ends, and the rest of the world be d***ed.

    And that's why I think he might have been itching to leave later on: they *weren't* giving him any actual power and he *wasn't* invited to learn any new forbidden arts. Lily's death just suddenly made everything clear and important. I think before her death, he cared about nothing but himself, not even the Death Eaters' anti-Muggle agenda. That's the change I see in him, and I think it's more powerful than the hatred reading.

  5. #5
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    Do you think Snape would have electricity in his home on Spinner's end? We know it was a home in a Muggle neighborhood and his Muggle father owned it, so it probably had electricity at one point. But do you think he would keep it even after he inheritied the house?

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  6. #6
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    It's actually possible that it doesn't (or didn't) have electricity.

    That's probably unlikely but from the description the house appears to be a mill terrace (Lancashire? or is that only in my imagination). A street of houses built by a mill owner for their employees. That would make it about a century old (possibly older) so it would have been built without electricity (and probably originally had an outside ash closet toilet).

    That gives you a lot of freedom. Was it "modernised" or not? Most old properties like that where taken over by councils as rented social housing and they were modernised in the 50's and 60's. But some were in private ownership and remained unmodernised.

    Somehow I find the idea of Snape in a tin bath in the living room amusing, so unmodernised might be interesting.

    If it has electricity I can't see Snape removing it. But I can't see him using it, either.

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  7. #7
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    Do you think Snape spent winter hols at Hogwarts while he was a student? If he did, do you think Lily would have stayed with him?
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  8. #8
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    I think Snape would much prefer to be at Hogwarts because he hated being at home so much. Lily ... hmmm .... i think she'd feel a big pull to return home and would maybe only stay in later years or of her parents are going away. She seems to have loving parents (if not a loving sister) so I can see her going home most years.

    Snape, therefore, it all depends on how much he wants to be with Lily, or away from his parents. His home life is only made bearable by Lily. His life at Hogwarts is much much more to his liking. If Lily was going to be spending all her time with her parents, then he might decide to stay at Hogwarts.

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  9. #9
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    I don't know ... I think Lily would have returned home regardless, though I'm sure it wouldn't have been an easy thing for her to do, since she seems to at least have had loving parents who I'm sure she would have wanted to go home to, while Snape - it seems to have been really terrible for him at home, and I don't think even Lily would have been enough to get him back there over Christmas, especially since she would be spending so much time with her family anyway.

    If your story (assuming you're writing one) depends on Lily staying, she probably would have stayed if, like Carole said, her parents were going away, or possibly a huge conflict with her sister. She strikes me as someone who would want to avoid drama and conflict, so if her and her sister had had a large fight, that coupled with Snape staying may have made her stay back with him. Likewise, something bad at Hogwarts may have made Snape return home over Christmas despite what was waiting for him back at home.

    This ended up being more Lily-oriented than Snape! Oh well, what can you do...
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  10. #10
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    Thank you for both your help, though I think I'm taking this story in another direction and my new question is:

    Do you think Snape attended Muggle school before Hogwarts?

    Reasoning: Well, he's a half-blood, his dad was a Muggle. Maybe he would have insisted that his son attend "normal" school for awhile. Also, I'm not sure what British laws are on how mandatory education is.
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