I love this post more than I love most things.
I like it for a lot of reasons, and very particularly for the Work Is Awesome And Is Undervalued In Comparison To Flashy Talent (because heck yes, this is a thing that should stop now), but I also quite frankly like it because it's a post about Choice.
I haven't read Harry Potter yet (I'm working on it!) but I've watched the movies. I've been distressed and disturbed by the direct family connections between who goes into what house and the almost predestined seeming system: go into the one house, you will be evil; go into another, you'll be a protagonist; go into the others, you'll be invisible. This made me sad, on a lot of levels, and whether the predestination was coming from Nature or Nurture, I didn't like it.
But if the children are sorted by choice, by their values, I like it more. It strips away that predestination and grants agency.
Though it makes me think, and I love that Will's post made me think this at all, and it's this: I'm not the person I was when I was a child. When I was a child, I was a very odd combination of personality impulses that I either inherited biologically or glommed off my parents through familiarity but (more to the point), my philosophy about life and work and the future and that which was important was totally different. And "totally different" in a "totally WRONG" way, by which I mean to say, I'm kind of ashamed of some of the things I thought and believed way back then.
I want the Harry Potter verse to grant agency to the children. I'm just curious as to how that insularity for those formative years works. It took me two decades to wake up one morning and realize the ultra-conservative Christian world I inhabited didn't fit me any more and never would again, and I didn't even have to deal with the trauma of tossing out all my clothes for a new color scheme.
So what I'm saying is: childhood is hard and Will deserves all the Tumblr fame ever.
RECOMMENDS! What have you been thinking about these days?