The opening paragraph of Chamber of Secrets chapter 15, entitled “Aragog,” is describing some very contrasting atmospheres. Outside on the grounds of Hogwarts, summer is approaching. The weather is perfect, but inside of the castle things for Harry have never been going more wrong. The students go fearfully through the corridors, and any happiness feels forced. I really liked that the chapter started off by describing this picture of contrasting points of view of the same place, so I decided to seek out more examples of that in the rest of the chapter.
The first thing that had very contrasting points of view is the way people felt about Dumbledore being suspended. The Headmaster was always viewed differently by people, to some he was a beacon of hope, to others he was the person running the school and it’s ideals into the ground. For example, Ron, (at the end of the last chapter, granted), has lost all hope of any Muggle-born students surviving further attacks. Madam Pomfrey shares this view, not letting anyone into the hospital wing, lest they try to finish off the petrified victims. Someone who isn’t so bothered by the Headmaster’s absence is Draco Malfoy. He is overjoyed that his father was the one to oust Dumbledore, and suggests that his favorite teacher, Snape, take over the job of Headmaster.
In the Herbology class that takes place in this chapter I found 2 situations that had different opinions. Ernie MacMillan owns up to his mistake and apologizes for accusing Harry of being the Heir of Slytherin (which I think is pretty big of a 12 year old to do, btw). Harry accepts his apology right away, but Ron isn’t so quick to accept Ernie’s change of heart. Then, Harry spots a trail of spider’s leading to the Forbidden Forest. Harry is determined to follow them later that night, and Ron only reluctantly agrees.
The last thing I found that had vastly different views of the same thing was the namesake of the chapter, Aragog. Hagrid wanted to help and led Harry and Ron to the Forbidden Forest where his old pet acromantula now lives. Hagrid is able to come and go as he pleases to the hollow of giant talking spiders, and believes that Harry and Ron will also be safe there. But, when Harry and Ron journey there, they barely come out alive. The opinion Hagrid has of Aragog is very different from the one Harry and Ron go away with. I think Ron sums it up best when he says, “That’s exactly Hagrid’s problem!…He always thinks monsters aren’t as bad as they’re made out…”.
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