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Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

by J.K. Rowling

Good vs. Evil Quotes

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #7

"But you should know that Hogwarts can expel students, and the Ministry of Magic – yes, there is a Ministry – will punish lawbreakers still more severely. All new wizards must accept that, in entering our world, they abide by our laws." (13.153)

What can law do when evil is at work? What examples of the law do we see in this story, and what is the purpose of laws? Dumbledore is able to be a great wizard while working within the rules and regulations of the society in which he lives. Why is Voldemort unable to do this?

Quote #8

"I know Dumbledore's tried appealing directly to Scrimgeour about Stan…I mean, anybody who has actually interviewed him agrees that he's about as much a Death Eater as this Satsuma…but top levels want to look as though they're making some progress, and 'three arrests' sounds better than 'three mistaken arrests and releases'…but again, this is all top secret…." (16.61)

What exactly is the Ministry of Magic doing to combat Voldemort? Why do they want to "appear" to have everything under control? Why can't they identify the right people to arrest? It would seem that they don't have a clue about what this war is about, which is strange and unsettling, considering it is the most powerful place of leadership in the Wizarding community. If Scrimgeour doesn't know what's going on, then who does? And, when Dumbledore dies at the end of the story, is there anyone left, besides Harry, who understands Voldemort?

Quote #9

"He is not very happy with me either. We must try not to sink beneath our anguish, Harry, but battle on." (17.74)

Dumbledore comments on Scrimgeour. You know things aren't good when the Minister of Magic doesn't know how to talk or listen to the two greatest wizards in the world. What do we learn about Scrimgeour in this moment? What kind of leader is he? How is he helping to win or lose this war?

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