As the precocious, young witch in the magical world of Harry Potter, it doesn’t seem fitting to include Hermione Granger in my Women Who Wow Wednesday series. However, once we see what she accomplishes when she flees the troll in the film Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, we can safely cast aside all those biases.
J.K. Rowling, author of the best-selling Harry Potter series, once said Hermione Granger “is an exaggeration of how I was when I was younger.” Described as a little know-it-all in her younger days, Rowling’s own rags-to-riches story inspires. In a short five-year period, Rowling went from state welfare to becoming a multi-millionaire. Forbes honored Rowling in 2004 as the first author to achieve a billionaire status. With over 400 million books sold, $160 Million in charitable donations, Rowling certainly has come a long way from those days when “she was a broke single mother, in poor accommodations, at a time of high unemployment.”
Although not poor, Hermione was born a Muggle, which translates to someone who has magical abilities but without magical blood. Her parents are dentists. When she arrives at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, she demonstrates her arrogance to her peers by criticizing other students’ incantations. Ron Weasley’s levitation charm immediately falls into her crosshairs. The other students, including Harry Potter, do not take kindly to her know-it-all attitude.
It isn’t until a troll traps Hermione in a washroom that her true nature comes alive. Cowering in a corner as the troll delivers one blow after another to stalls and basins, Ron and Harry appear without a clue of what to do. The troll grabs Harry by the leg and swings, missing him several times. Ron needs to do something. His levitation charm comes to mind. Still unsure how to cast it, Hermione directs Ron, “swish and flick.” And that’s what he does with his wand, swish and flick, “Wingardium Leviosa.” The club the troll uses to destroy suddenly levitates to the ceiling. It floats there for a while until it comes crashing on to the troll’s pea-brain head.
When Professors Severus Snape and Minerva McGonagall show up horrified at the sight of the troll on the floor and the catastrophic condition of the washroom, they’re ready to place blame. Hermione jumps in to take full responsibility for all damages. That is, she utters a small fib to cover for her friends, Ron and Harry. From that moment forward, Ron, Harry, and Hermione remain inseparable.
While Hermione may not appear as a gun-toting super girl, her numerous swish and flick episodes make her a feared opponent. Even to a whimpering Draco Malfoy, who she once held against a tree with her wand pointed directly at his face. Hermione does not tolerate bullying.
From her strong friendships with Ron and Harry to her casting of protective spells, Hermione proves what a defender of good truly is.
What do you like about Hermione? If you’ve read Harry Potter, do you see a difference in character between the Hermione of the books to the movies?
23 thoughts on “Hermione Granger”
i love hermione!!!! and harry potter. i don’t often tell people, but i loved those books even more than lord of the rings. fighting words to some people 😉
I should ask your opinion about The Hunger Games. Harry Potter, LOTR or The Hunger Games? That ought to stimulate so discussion! 😉
Great post…I like her almost as much as Emma Watson 🙂 I loved how it was Hermione who conspired with Dumbledore to use time travel (and thus save the day) in The Prisoner of Azkaban. Too bad she didn’t get even more of the spotlight, but I guess the series was titled “Harry Potter.” 🙂
Hermione is a great character. She practically steals the spotlight from Harry. And I did read the books and watch the movies – my son aged along with Harry – and I find them very congruent.
Hermione was a great choice! She’s one of my favourite Potter characters, alongside Luna 🙂
One of the great things about J.K’s world is that magic is a gender leveller — you don’t need physical strength to engage in a duel — which gave her characters like Hermione, Tonks, and Fleur, who were able to “hold their own” with the boys. To be honest, I wish Rowlog would have made more of the opportunity. Nevertheless, Hermione is wonderful because (as others have mentioned) her knowledge operates in the same capacity as a strong physique in the muggle world — it gives her power and makes her equal in a male dominated world.
Something I’d like to point out, though, is that Hermione is studious rather than genius, and I much prefer that. She doesn’t automatically know everything because she’s just naturally brilliant, she goes to the library and reads tonnes of books. I think that’s a better message.
Hi i’m Serenity’s younger sister and she thought i’d appreciate your post, which I did, but as a big Harry Potter fan i’d like to correct you on just one thing in your post. While your definition of a Muggle is almost accurate, Hermione Granger is not just called a “Muggle”, her proper classification under the definition under the term Muggle is Muggle born, or the slang term used by the pure-blood wizard families is “Mudblood” meaning dirty blood or non-magic parents, which one doesn’t expect to hear in civilized conversation. And of course I mean no disrespect and was glad you did a great job re-counting the Troll scene. 🙂
Hi Amy, thanks for jumping in with the extra info! Yup, I knew about Hermione being a Mudblood. Draco reminds us whenever we forget. I wrote the post from Hermione’s perspective. So I’d thought probably the best way to describe her being a Mudblood without ever uttering the word would be to describe the profession of her parents instead: “Her parents are dentists.” Any reputable wizard wouldn’t get caught in an ordinary profession such as dentistry! 😉
Anyway, thanks again so much for your comment. Great having others chime in to my posts. Oh, and no disrespect taken!
Hermione definitely belongs in the category of Women Who Wow. Especially since she’s got a large cat. 🙂
I prefer Hermione in the books. She’s a bit more of a bluestocking, a trifle geekier, such as when she tries to mount that campaign to free the House Elves. That she needed to use magic to make herself prettier for her date with Viktor Krum made her more sympathetic and real. She’s courageous and brilliant and talented, but she’s also very human.
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I remember Hermione being quite annoying when I started reading the books to my children at bedtime. By the time we reached Goblet of Fire, they were reading the books themselves thank goodness- they were getting thicker and less focussed by then. In the films, Hermione comes out as the dominant character and those two teenage boys would have been useless without her.
like Kaela(above) I have not read the books or seen the movies. I was going to write “I’m the last person out there” like this but then I saw Kaela’s post, ha! Feeling left out I made sure to keep up with Hunger Games, ha! Thanks for the great read, Jack.
I have never read the books or seen the movies. *sigh* Better get on that.
That goes in the file, lol 😉
I began reading “Harry Potter” books to my kids at bed time. I would use a british accent, and this was well before the movies came out. I had a voice for each character, so to the kids, it was like being there.
funny enough, i didn’t know how to pronounce “Hermoine”. I pronounced it “Her-mee-own”. After watching the first movie the kids and i laughed our muggle bums off listening to the correct pronunciation of her name.
At any rate, my kids grew up before we finished the series and they lost interest. i, on the otherhand, cared so much about these hogwarts students. i kept on. Ms. Granger to me was such a great character because she was a strong female model. Smart, pretty, and could be vulnerable when appropriate.
Here I thought I was the only one with the character voices during bedtime. Not necessarily for Harry Potter but for other stories I would read them with British, Irish, Texan, Australian, German and Italian accents. I never could get a Middle Eastern accent down right, so I gave up on that one–for now. Anyway, I do agree with the pronunciation of Hermoine’s name…I had trouble with that too!
Hermione is such a strong female role model in my humble opinion. I am a Potter fanatic so I know the books and films inside out. I much prefer the book version of her. She’s actually very ‘normal’ and plain looking, intelligent, fiercely loyal and very funny. I like Emma Watson in the role, but I didn’t always see aspects of the book Hermione brought to life. She’s almost too perfect in the films.
Another great choice. I haven’t read the books (shock horror) so I can’t compare, but I love her feisty ‘get on with it’ attitude.
I love the character of Hermione for her brains and her wit! She pulls herself together and stays strong for the group. I think its the one character that stays relatively the same between the book and the movie. But if you asked me the differences, its been too long since I’ve read the books to give a good answer.
HAHAHAHA! xD Dangerous question Jack 😀
I heart Hermione. I just love the way she comes in to her own as the series progresses. At the beginning, she’s only concerned about how she can show up her classmates and score high marks; by the end she’s realized that her fierce intelligence is literally a weapon – and that she’s capable of saving the lives of the people she loves. You go Hermione!
Therein lies the rub. She’s imbued in the world of magic, yet her strongest character trait is her razor-sharp intelligence. As the saying goes, knowledge is power.
I actually never read beyond the first book due to my friends telling me all about the series as they read it. So, I only really know the movie Hermione. Honestly, I thought she was the one that dig most of the legwork throughout the series. It always felt like Harry Potter’s world was one where knowledge was more important than power and she always knew more about what was going on than the boys.