Also.Also.Also: It’s True, Hermione Granger is Black and Other Stories to Make Your Day

The first thing you need to know today is that ‘Harry Potter and the Cursed Child’ has cast a black Hermione (Noma Dumezweni!!) and we’re doing backflips and high kicks, along with JK Rowling, who tweeted “Canon: brown eyes, frizzy hair and very clever. White skin was never specified. Rowling loves black Hermione.” Aaaaaaaah! Cheers your butterbeers, babes.



The second thing you need to know is that my stepdad can’t find any of their ornaments, so we just have this giant tree all lit up and one single Polar Express bell tied to it. Will we find the ornaments before Christmas? I’ll keep you posted.

Queer as in F*ck You

+ If You’re Gay and Looking for Love, These are the Best Cities to Live In according to Match.

Doll Parts

+ Pussy Riot to Open “Women Only” Museum in Montenegro. “Institution will be run by women, feature only art created by women.”

+ These Women Say They Were Kicked Out of Sports Because of Their Gender by Eve Simmons.

+ Growing Up as a Feminist in an Immigrant Family by TK Matunda.

+ Princess Leia’s Feminist Agenda: Yeah, She Had One by Suzi Parker.

Saw This, Thought of You

+ Still relevant! Franchesca Ramsey with Five Comebacks for Your Racist Relative During the Holidays.

+ Krista Burton is here with a life skill: How to Graciously Accept a Disappointing Present.

+ A Self-Care Guide to Counter Trump Fatigue by Zahra Noorbakhsh.

+ Drink Pairings for Uncomfortable Family Conversations from Winona Dimeo-Ediger.

+ From Bee Larvae to Toilet Rats, National Geographic’s Favorite Videos of 2015. Neat things to look at!

+ 9 Star Wars Vehicles from a Galaxy Not So Far, Far Away.

+ Something to talk about over holiday dinners, maybe: What’s Best, Worst and Most Weird About American Food.

+ At the Corner of the Real and Imagined: On Literary Geography by Rebecca Turkewitz.

+ New Violent Femmes album is coming. I feel a way about this. Like imagine a Lucky Charms cereal where the oat pieces are ☹ and the marshmallow charms are ❓, then pour a bowl of that for yourself, using wine instead of milk. I’m that bowl of Emoji Charms re: a new Violent Femmes album. I’m that way about several things, really.

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lnj has written 310 articles for us.




    Thank you for bringing so much joy into my life this Monday afternoon, Laneia!

  2. Also also also the one bell tree sounds like a Christmas story.

    And, I’m sitting finishing sewing my wife’s present, listening to Christmas music, and this year EVERY time I hear the words “Christmas Carol”, I think of Care Blanchett and get the hugest grin on my face.

      • Hahaha!

        I have to tell you, we went to see Carol twice already, and the second time I had my wife meet me there in her faux fur coat and dark cat-eye glasses (I wore a 50’s dress and bolero-style top).

        And that thing that topped it all? The very first time I met her, that’s what she was wearing, 15 years ago. How could I resist?

  3. I hope Pussy Riot’s women only museum includes trans women (or at least doesn’t explicitly exclude them) because I like them and would like to continue to do so.

  4. Thanks for sharing this – Hermione just became even more awesome! I also really liked the re-tweeted fan art that the article included of a black or brown Hermione… How powerful the imagination can be to fill in the gaps between words, to make space to live!

  5. I think my little nerd heart is going to explode from star wars ladies being amazing AND black Hermione??? Like, good star wars news AND good HP news?? I don’t even know how to process all of this, I’ve happy cried about more nerd shit lately than I know how to handle.

  6. That’s great that we are getting a black Hermione NOW but JK has got to stop declaring shit canon way after the books and films have been released. Dumbledore being gay for example. I watched 8 movies where Hermione was white as snow and she did have some say in how those films were cast. Wouldn’t it have been cool if young girls grew up watching those films with a main character who was a POC?

    • Why couldn’t Rita Skeeter include a line in her book saying Dumbledore was gay? Would that be so bad?

      • Something tells me she didn’t decide Dumbledore was “canon” until well after the books were published and she got a Twitter account where she actually has to deal with the public responding to her. I hate when writers do this. It’s not “canon” if it’s not in your source material. Telling us after the fact doesn’t accomplish a whole lot of anything so stop trying to act like you are so progressive after the fact.

        • Actually!! I read that in one of the earlier films there was a part in the script where Dumbledore was supposed to tell Harry an anecdote about a “young witch” he was crushing on back in the day, but JK shut it down by revealing to the writer or maybe the actor that he couldn’t say that because he was gay. And I do think it’s supposed to be obvious from reading the books, since he’s described as wearing a “flamboyant” purple suit when he goes to visit Tom Riddle at the orphanage, along with some other bits of subtext. But I do agree with you that representation should extend beyond vague subtextual hints.

          • It almost seems like the easiest way out, as if she purposely wrote the story vaguely so as to appeal to as wide an audience as possible.

        • Because writers can’t revisit or reinterpret their source material after having years to strengthen their knowledge and experience in particular fields and gaining other perspectives?

          When the books were first out it was still super risky to declare any character in a YA novel as gay, esp if it’s not meant to be a Very Special Episode Book. For all we know, she had that in mind but wasn’t allowed to write that in by her editors or couldn’t find a way to shoehorn the reference into the already-overloaded-with-plot story.

          It’s her source material, she gets to adapt it however the hell she wants.

          • If she did think DB was gay then I wish she had even more subtext that was more obvious for queer people to pick up on. Ddoor flagging, anyone?

            There is no excuse for the casting of the films to have been so white washed. It feels like she is trying to fix it now that she has found out what people want, but I certainly hope she doesn’t stop at just casting a black Hermione.

            I really enjoyed Harry Potter but I don’t understand why people are so protective of J.K Rowling? Surely, encouraging her to cast and write POC or LGBT into her stories is a valuable thing for her to hear – especially as someone who is so influential to young folk – rather than protecting her feelings and saying everything is perfect and keep doing what you’re doing?

          • If that were really the case JK and she was limited or told not make a character gay(or black) she would have said that by now. She has done many many interviews about Harry Potter and continues to post about the books on her Twitter and seems to have no problem putting people in their place about certain characters. It is one thing to revisit or reinterpret the source material, like she’s doing now with HP and the Cursed Child. It’s another to claim this information was ALWAYS canon when that material has existed for years without her legions of young fans being privy to this information. I’m just saying it would have been great for kids to have grown up all along knowing that these beloved characters were something other than white and/or straight.

    • 1. Discover the secret to resurrection, bring back Louisa May Alcott
      2. Sign her up for Twitter
      3. She declares that Jo March Lesbian is canon

      • I meant to write my comment as a separate reply to the article, not as a reply to this thread. It wasn’t directed at anyone here. Silly middle of the night autostraddling self.

  7. It’s great that Hermione is Black. Now if the whole cast, including the Harry and Ron actors, looked under 25, that would be nice… unless this is supposed to be Wizard Mid-Life Crisis.

    • It’s set 19 years after the last book, so there’s no reason that the actors should look under 25!

  8. i LOVE that all the cities to find love for men in the guide are like, “looking to party? looking for an awesome city where something’s going on all the time? move here!” and the cities for women looking to find the love of other women are like, “hey, we’ve got good school systems, the cost of living isn’t too bad here, you can have a big yard for your dogs/cat encasement. move here!”

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