Wednesday, April 9, 2014
H is for Hermione Granger!
End of the semester is hitting me hard, friends, so this is going to be a relatively short post. Luckily, everyone is familiar with my heroine of the day, so I hope you'll forgive me!
Hermione. She is the type of female character I so desperately crave more of. The type I want to start seeing in leading roles instead of supporting roles. The type I badly wish was the norm. She is the type of character I want my future daughter to grow up with. YA authors, pay attention won't you?
Hermione is amazingly intelligent and remarkably dedicated. Her good grades come from more than just her brilliant mind, they come from her persistence and dedication to her work, something that she transfers into everything she does. Hermione sticks around no matter how difficult times get; no matter how dangerous or frustrating or seemingly impossible, she refuses to give up on what she knows is the right path.
She teaches us that we can be intelligent and strong and loyal and fearless all at once. She reminds up that these characteristics are not gender specific, as so many stories want to portray them to be.
On top of all of that, her story is not centered around a boy, and unfortunately that is a radical concept in YA lit. Yes she is Harry's best friend. Yes she has a few minor romances and eventually ends up falling in love with Ron. But these pieces of her story do not define her; they are simply that: pieces. Her story is so much bigger, so much more complex, so much more real than the hundreds of stories in which the main female character's entire story revolves around a boy she's completely in love with. Hermione is her own character. She has her own life with its own unique struggles. She has her own flaws to overcome. And she has so so much to contribute to the world she has found herself in.
If fifteen years or so from now my daughter wants to grow up to be just like Hermione, I would be happy with that. I can only hope that between now and then characters like her become more common. I'm tired of watching the world be saved by men in every book I open; I'm bored of female characters whose life changes forever when they meet a mysterious new boy; give me more Hermione Grangers. We are long overdue; we deserve more characters like her.