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Suffering Proves You Are Still A Man

Suffering Proves You Are Still A Man

“Harry, suffering like this proves you are still a man!  This pain is part of being human–”

“THEN–I–DON’T–WANT–TO–BE–HUMAN!” Harry roared, and he seized one of the delicate silver instruments from the spindle-legged table beside him and flung it across the room.

discussing whether Harry's pain is his greatest strength (OP37)

Commentary

To be completely fair, there are very few things that Dumbledore could have said to Harry in this instant that would have been of consolation to him.  All around, though, this was an interesting play.  It sticks with Harry for many years, which suggests that he has thought about it in times of great personal pain.

DUMBLEDORE: ...To suffer is as human as to breathe.

HARRY: You said that to me once before.

(CC4)

Dumbledore seems to be trying to reassure Harry that his suffering is natural, when all Harry wants is to escape from it.  He doesn't want to think about how it is an inevitability.  I also read this reassurance as one intended to set Harry apart from Voldemort, who is not so human and does not have the capacity to feel what Harry is feeling.  Harry doesn't want to be like Voldemort, but he absolutely does not want to feel this pain, and this comment from Dumbledore is troubling.

--AK

Pensieve (Comments)

Tags: anger catharsis grief human humanity mourning pain rage roaring screaming shouting suffering yelling

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