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Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6



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  #61  
Old November 3rd, 2011, 6:28 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by BrianTung View Post
Ehh, I'm not sure I agree with that. I agree that he was responsible for putting some family at risk even if no one had been killed, but that doesn't mean he wasn't also responsible for their actual deaths.
The reason I feel the way I do about the Potters is because there was a way they could defeat their deaths at Voldemort's hands. If they had chosen to go under the Fidelus with Dumbledore as SK or with James himself. they would have been alive. Had their Fidelus been secure, they would lived, unless they chose to fight for the Order again, and happened to die in the line of duty. So, I think, mainly because Snape's information allows the mistake he made to be undone completely. That is, in keeping the Potter family from dying.

That they died, after they were warned of being specific targets I feel was not because of Snape and most importantly not because they could not have been kept safe. I think that's what takes away the responsibility of their deaths from Snape's shoulders; not that he thought so. Snape never thought so; I think he always held himself responsible in every way. But I cannot help feel that the Potters deaths were not Snape's responsibility, mainly because there was a way they could have lived safely.

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Intent follows the bullet (or the wand, I guess). Trying to prevent their deaths after Voldemort had locked and loaded is a mitigating factor, but it doesn't entirely absolve Snape of responsibility.
I think in this case they could have moved away in such a manner that the bullet did not hit them. They had that chance. That the chance did not work out I feel is not because of Snape.

I guess I see it this way. Snape made the mistake. He realised what his mistake would result in. So he came to Dumbledore and Dumbledore offered a way out for the Potters to overcome Snape's terrible mistake, so that the mistake became not a mistake at all. Should Snape be blamed when his mistake could be completely undone, in fact should have been? I just don't think so.

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Originally Posted by FurryDice View Post
Closing the stable door after the horse has bolted. Snape had already done the damage. Nothing could undo the damage he had done. The Potters were always going to be targets after that, even if they hadn't died that Halloween.

Snape passed on the prophecy which made the Potters number one on Voldemort's kill-list. IMO, that puts a share of the responsibility for their deaths on Snape's shoulders.
Answered in Brian Tung's post.

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And take risk that the owl would be intercepted? In any case, Voldemort's plan was for Snape to be at Hogwarts - Snape tells Bellatrix he was at Hogwarts on the Dark Lord's orders.
But this implies Snape came to Dumbledore on the hill to get the job on Voldemort's behalf, which means he never changed; I disagree. I think when Snape came to Dumbledore, he had nothing in his head about Hogwarts jobs or what Voldemort had ordered him to do. I think he came there to save Lily (for his sake) and her family (for her sake).

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Plenty of people fought for the Order and against Voldemort without having first served and helped Voldemort. Most of them had personal reasons for fighting Voldemort, but they did not need personal reasons not to be members of something completely evil.
I agree. Plenty of people fought for the Order without having been DEs. My point however, was not that. It was that most people took a stance because it was personal for them. It was those people for whom it was not very personal, were the ones who were able to move away from their initial stance. Regulus joined the DEs; but for him it was not as personal as it was for Bellatrix for example, so he was able to change his stance, when he realised that Voldemort and his DEs were not what he stood for; when he realised he had discovered values, people and priorities more important what Voldemort represented. Unfortunately it needed him to make a mistake before he could understand that he was not this DE person at all, in the same manner, I think Snape too, joined Voldemort, but he was able to change when he realised that his value system was different from what Voldemort represented and so he walked away.

Of course he could have spared himself a whole lot of heartache and pain and everything if only he had not made the mistake in the first place, but that he did does not mean IMO that he had no value system to speak of at all, when he spent the rest of his life fighting against the system that he willingly joined in the first place.


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  #62  
Old November 3rd, 2011, 6:44 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by The_Green_Woods View Post
The reason I feel the way I do about the Potters is because there was a way they could defeat their deaths at Voldemort's hands. If they had chosen to go under the Fidelus with Dumbledore as SK or with James himself. they would have been alive. Had their Fidelus been secure, they would lived, unless they chose to fight for the Order again, and happened to die in the line of duty. So, I think, mainly because Snape's information allows the mistake he made to be undone completely. That is, in keeping the Potter family from dying.
I disagree that Snape's mistake was undone. Nothing can undo what Snape did. It was a case of closing the stable door after the horse had bolted, IMO.
Even if the Potters had not been betrayed then, they would live the rest of their lives as targets at the top of Voldemort's hit-list, because he believed their child was the threat mentioned in the prophecy that Snape brought to him.
Snape put a family in danger, and it turned out to be the Potters. There was no undoing that. The Potters were not to blame for their own deaths; Voldemort, Pettigrew and Snape were responsible, IMO.

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That they died, after they were warned of being specific targets I feel was not because of Snape and most importantly not because they could not have been kept safe. I think that's what takes away the responsibility of their deaths from Snape's shoulders; not that he thought so. Snape never thought so; I think he always held himself responsible in every way. But I cannot help feel that the Potters deaths were not Snape's responsibility, mainly because there was a way they could have lived safely.
The Potters were never safe once Voldemort chose to go after their baby. I don't think anything removes the responsibility of his actions and their consequences from Snape.

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I think in this case they could have moved away in such a manner that the bullet did not hit them. They had that chance. That the chance did not work out I feel is not because of Snape.
That the bullet was coming directly for them in the first place is because of Snape.

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I guess I see it this way. Snape made the mistake. He realised what his mistake would result in. So he came to Dumbledore and Dumbledore offered a way out for the Potters to overcome Snape's terrible mistake, so that the mistake became not a mistake at all. Should Snape be blamed when his mistake could be completely undone, in fact should have been? I just don't think so.

I don't see it. Passing information that will get people killed is a mistake, and there's nothing that I can see that would make it not a mistake.



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But this implies Snape came to Dumbledore on the hill to get the job on Voldemort's behalf, which means he never changed; I disagree. I think when Snape came to Dumbledore, he had nothing in his head about Hogwarts jobs or what Voldemort had ordered him to do. I think he came there to save Lily (for his sake) and her family (for her sake).
Snape says himself in Spinner's End that he was at Hogwarts on the Dark Lord's orders the night he fell. It's something Bellatrix could easily check if Snape was lying. And Voldemort would not have been too pleased if Snape had started working at Hogwarts without his permission. I think that Snape changed, but it's also canon that Voldemort sent him to spy on Dumbledore, that Voldemort wanted him to spin a story for Dumbledore and to get a job at Hogwarts.



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I agree. Plenty of people fought for the Order without having been DEs. My point however, was not that. It was that most people took a stance because it was personal for them.
Taking a stance because it's personal is a far cry from being a terrorist, putting people in danger, until it becomes personal and your own actions come back to bite you, as they did for Snape. I think there's a big difference.

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Unfortunately it needed him to make a mistake before he could understand that he was not this DE person at all, in the same manner, I think Snape too, joined Voldemort, but he was able to change when he realised that his value system was different from what Voldemort represented and so he walked away.
I think Snape needed to change his value system. IMO, he shared the "values" of the DEs when he joined them and worked for Voldemort. I think he needed to completely re-examine his values.


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  #63  
Old November 3rd, 2011, 7:23 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by FurryDice View Post

IMO, being a Death Eater, at all is evil.
I have to disagree. The Purebloodists felt they had a gift and that it was being tainted and diluted by intermingling with non-magic beings. Their idea was to maintain a pureblood standard. Not a nice thing, but keeping Muggleborns from practicing magic and keeping Muggles "in their place," while pompous, prejudice, and nasty, is not, in itself "evil." The means that some individuals, who were DEs, went to carry this out was evil. The fact that Voldemort encouraged that was evil. But, I still do not see Severus as into all of the torture and murder, and still back that up with Bella's statements at Spinner's End. You can dismiss them by saying how radical she was. But, to me, they are valid comments on Severus' lack of participation in most of the activities and his avoidance of participating in them.

Again, this is a matter of opinion, but Bella's statements are cannon, so I guess that makes them a matter of interpretation. We just see them differently.

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IMO, it was evil because it put a family in danger. That was what the DEs were doing - destroying lives. Snape was a part of that. I agree, he didn't think about who it would endanger - he simply didn't give a toss who he hurt, IMO - it would take a complete imbecile not to realise that Voldemort would want to kill a prophecied threat and Snape was most certainly not an imbecile.
Once again, our perception/opinion of what is "evil" differs.

Severus was careless and uncaring. Both of those are very human failings, and, as we know, Severus had more than his share of human failings. But, his intent in carrying the prophecy was, IMO, not to put someone in danger, but to offer it in place of the failure to get the job he was sent to get. No, he didn't "give a toss," as you put it. But, again, while that is uncaring and not a good thing, I still don't see it as evil. Evil is someone who ponders over what mayhem the information he has will cause and revels in that. I do not see Severus as doing that.

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His concern for Lily dying was because it would hurt him. It did hurt him when she died. His prime concern was about himself, not Lily - Lily shouldn't die because she mattered to Snape. Lily's family didn't matter a jot - hence, Lily and her feelings didn't come into it. His objection was not to something evil happening, his objection was to something evil hurting Severus Snape.

It was selfish, because he was playing god - deciding that people only deserved to live because they mattered to him. It was about needing a personal reason not to be an accomplice to the most evil wizard of their time. He needed a personal reason not to help to destroy lives.
And, again, I'll disagree. IMO, his concern was for Lily dying. As I said, it would make no difference to him if she was dead or alive as far as his own feelings. He'd lost her forever. He had no contact with her. What difference would it make to him if she were dead or alive? As a matter of fact, if she were dead, at least she wouldn't be with James Potter. So, if he cared only for his own feelings, separating her from James might have been rewarding.

He wanted her to live for her, IMO, not for him. He wasn't going to get anything out of it. She certainly wasn't going to come thank him for saving her life. So, I don't see his selfishness as a part of it. And, I've already conceded that his failure to include James and Harry in the initial request was wrong. He should have asked for the whole family. But, again, it is a human failing to concentrate on the one you love and to overlook others when that loved one is in danger.

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I don't think there's anything human in being a Death Eater. I don't think there's anything human in thinking it's acceptable to murder people. Perhaps it is human, but it is something from the very pit and depths of humanity, IMO.

Snape's conscience about a family in general is not just about the Potters - he had no objection to people being murdered because of his information until it came back to bite him. He was playing god with people's lives, as Death Eaters do.
IMO, this might have been a fact, had he really analyzed the prophecy before giving it to Voldemort. But, I don't think he understood it anymore than Voldemort did, since they only had a portion of it. Yes, Severus was uncaring. Did he know that Voldemort was going after someone? Yes, more than likely. But, did he think he'd really succeed with just the bit of information in the prophecy? It could have been anyone born at the end of July...that's a lot of people. The prophecy doesn't speak of a child, in particular. I don't really think that Severus gave the prophecy that much thought before transmitting it to Voldemort. So, no, I do not see him as "playing god." We don't know how bad he felt that someone was going to be murdered so that he might save himself by offering the prophecy in place of success at obtaining a position at Hogwarts. We're not told this, or with what relish he delivered the prophecy. Was he really happy to sic Voldy on some poor family, or was it a "them or me" proposition?

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One should not need to be "invited" not to be a terrorist. Also, people aren't exactly going to be falling over themselves to trust someone who uses blood epithets at a time when a war is targetting and murdering people because of their blood. People didn't know who to trust during the war, and I'd imagine most of them would have the good sense to cross those who called others "mudblood" off their safe-list.
I wonder how many young Slytherins, similar to Severus, got lured into joining the DEs without full knowledge of their true nature? I wonder how many, given a choice to leave, would have done so if they could have without forfeiting their lives? Evidentally Voldemort wasn't above "inviting" people like Slughorn and the likes to join the DEs, knowing that he more than likely would lean to the good side. No, the good guys didn't know who they could trust, and many obviously trusted the wrong people. But, I think judging someone because they used a term like "mudblood" at a time of great stress and frustration is totally unfair. A certain Gryffindor probably never used that word, but ended up being one of Voldemort's most loyal followers. So, just the use of the word is not a real true test of character, IMO.


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I fail to see any reason whatsoever why a Death Eater would not carry such crucial information to his master. Snape would have given that information to Voldemort whether or not he got the job. He was listening at the keyhole for information.
What information? Was Dumbledore finished with this candidate? Was it soon to be his turn? What questions were being asked that might help him answer better and get the job? We don't know what Severus was really listening for, just that he was listening. Maybe he'd heard Sybil's tone of voice change and it piqued his curiosity. I doubt he'd think he was going to overhear anything critical to Voldemort in an ordinary conversation between the Headmaster and a potential employee.

Since I don't believe that Severus was a dyed-in-the-wool DE, I, personally, don't think he'd have cared if Voldemort did have someone who would conquer him. That might have even been a relief because he could have been free of him. But, we are not told what Severus true feelings were at the time he carried the prophecy, other than Dumbledore's telling Harry that, as a follower Severus would naturally have carried the message to Voldemort -- but, even Dumbledore didn't know what was actually in Severus' heart and mind at that time. He was only remarking on a DE in general.

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IMO, there is nothing to prove that. What we have in canon is a Severus Snape who was loyal to Voldemort until he got a well-deserved, IMO, taste of his own medicine.
IMO, what we have is a Severus Snape, who, in canon, is berated and belittled by another DE for his lack of participation and dedication to the cause. Bella not only questions this, but also his loyalty. She makes it clear to her sister that she did not trust Severus to carry out the protection of Draco because she didn't feel that he carried out other things...that he just slithered back into his hole when the going got rough. It took his agreeing to the Unbreakable Vow to convince her.


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  #64  
Old November 3rd, 2011, 8:19 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by MinervasCat View Post
I have to disagree. The Purebloodists felt they had a gift and that it was being tainted and diluted by intermingling with non-magic beings. Their idea was to maintain a pureblood standard. Not a nice thing, but keeping Muggleborns from practicing magic and keeping Muggles "in their place," while pompous, prejudice, and nasty, is not, in itself "evil." The means that some individuals, who were DEs, went to carry this out was evil. The fact that Voldemort encouraged that was evil.

IMO, that attitude was downright evil bigotry, and the actions they took based on the bigotry were also evil. Who did they think they were to decide who was worthy and unworthy to have magic and to live? Who did they think they were, murdering Muggles for fun? People did not join the DEs to sit around sipping firewhisky and whining about "mudbloods". They joined the DEs for personal gain, and to cause death and destruction in the name of their bigotry. I don't think any of them were innocent. IMO, the whole organisation was evil to the core.

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Severus was careless and uncaring. Both of those are very human failings, and, as we know, Severus had more than his share of human failings. But, his intent in carrying the prophecy was, IMO, not to put someone in danger, but to offer it in place of the failure to get the job he was sent to get. No, he didn't "give a toss," as you put it. But, again, while that is uncaring and not a good thing, I still don't see it as evil. Evil is someone who ponders over what mayhem the information he has will cause and revels in that. I do not see Severus as doing that.
IMO, it is truly callous to not care that one's actions will cause someone to be murdered. IMO, it is evil to be a member of a racist group of murderers. IMO, whether or not Snape got the job, he would have given Voldemort the prophecy.


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And, again, I'll disagree. IMO, his concern was for Lily dying. As I said, it would make no difference to him if she was dead or alive as far as his own feelings. He'd lost her forever. He had no contact with her. What difference would it make to him if she were dead or alive? As a matter of fact, if she were dead, at least she wouldn't be with James Potter. So, if he cared only for his own feelings, separating her from James might have been rewarding.
Well, separating Lily from James was what Snape hoped for, until he maybe started worrying that he wouldn't get what he wanted from Voldemort.
If Snape's concern had truly been for Lily, for Lily herself and not for his own feelings, he would have asked Dumbledore to protect the whole family, without being shamed into it. He would have considered Lily's feelings if it had been about Lily.

He knew he would feel grief if Lily died. He didn't want that to happen. He didn't want to go through what he was willing to cause to others.

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He wanted her to live for her, IMO, not for him. He wasn't going to get anything out of it. She certainly wasn't going to come thank him for saving her life. So, I don't see his selfishness as a part of it. And, I've already conceded that his failure to include James and Harry in the initial request was wrong. He should have asked for the whole family. But, again, it is a human failing to concentrate on the one you love and to overlook others when that loved one is in danger.
This wasn't a matter of picking which person to drag from a burning building. Snape could, if he cared a fig about Lily's feelings, have asked Dumbledore for her entire family to be kept safe.

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IMO, this might have been a fact, had he really analyzed the prophecy before giving it to Voldemort. But, I don't think he understood it anymore than Voldemort did, since they only had a portion of it. Yes, Severus was uncaring. Did he know that Voldemort was going after someone? Yes, more than likely. But, did he think he'd really succeed with just the bit of information in the prophecy? It could have been anyone born at the end of July...that's a lot of people. The prophecy doesn't speak of a child, in particular. I don't really think that Severus gave the prophecy that much thought before transmitting it to Voldemort.
It was hardly rocket science - Snape told Voldemort about a boy born at the end of July who would have the power to vanquish him. Not just a child born at the end of July, but a child born to those who had thrice defied Voldemort. That would narrow it down a lot. Snape knew that Voldemort was a murderer. The entire wizarding community knew that when Snape was sixteen, and people didn't say Voldemort's name out of sheer dread. Snape was not an idiot - he had to have known well that someone would be in mortal peril because of his actions.

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So, no, I do not see him as "playing god." We don't know how bad he felt that someone was going to be murdered so that he might save himself by offering the prophecy in place of success at obtaining a position at Hogwarts. We're not told this, or with what relish he delivered the prophecy. Was he really happy to sic Voldy on some poor family, or was it a "them or me" proposition?
How was it going to be a "them or me" situation? Voldemort treated his followers like dirt, even with all their delusions of grandeur as DEs, but he didn't kill them randomly - the only time we see him doing that is in DH when he learns of the break-in at Gringotts. And he kills those DEs who betrayed him. He didn't seem to kill those who messed up - judging by the "quality" of his DEs, he would have very few left if he did that.

IMO, being a DE is to play god. They decided they had the right to decide who was worthy or unworthy. Who deserved to live or die. They played judge, jury and executioner. Snape did this too - it was fine to call others mudblood, it was fine to help in the murders of others, but not Lily.


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I wonder how many young Slytherins, similar to Severus, got lured into joining the DEs without full knowledge of their true nature? I wonder how many, given a choice to leave, would have done so if they could have without forfeiting their lives? Evidentally Voldemort wasn't above "inviting" people like Slughorn and the likes to join the DEs, knowing that he more than likely would lean to the good side.
I don't see Snape and his fellow DEs as being that dimwitted and gullible. The wizarding community was at war. People were being murdered. People feared to say Voldemort's name, by the time Snape was sixteen. If they didn't know the true nature of the DEs, it was wilful ignorance, IMO.

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But, I think judging someone because they used a term like "mudblood" at a time of great stress and frustration is totally unfair. A certain Gryffindor probably never used that word, but ended up being one of Voldemort's most loyal followers. So, just the use of the word is not a real true test of character, IMO.
Using that word is a good reason not to trust someone, at a time when people are being murdered purely because others consider them "mudbloods" and that they are "tainting and diluting the pureblood standard". It doesn't mean that every DE is going to use that word, or that every untrustworthy person is going to use that word, but I do think it means that people who used that word were people to be extremely wary of.

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What information? Was Dumbledore finished with this candidate? Was it soon to be his turn? What questions were being asked that might help him answer better and get the job? We don't know what Severus was really listening for, just that he was listening. Maybe he'd heard Sybil's tone of voice change and it piqued his curiosity. I doubt he'd think he was going to overhear anything critical to Voldemort in an ordinary conversation between the Headmaster and a potential employee.
He was there as a DE, trying to get a job in order to spy on Dumbledore. Why wouldn't he have been listening, to see if anything useful came up? Sybill Trelawney thought he was trying to pick up interview tips, but that doesn't make it so.

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Since I don't believe that Severus was a dyed-in-the-wool DE, I, personally, don't think he'd have cared if Voldemort did have someone who would conquer him. That might have even been a relief because he could have been free of him. But, we are not told what Severus true feelings were at the time he carried the prophecy, other than Dumbledore's telling Harry that, as a follower Severus would naturally have carried the message to Voldemort -- but, even Dumbledore didn't know what was actually in Severus' heart and mind at that time. He was only remarking on a DE in general.
If Snape had in any way been a reluctant DE, or hopeful that someone could conquer Voldemort, he wouldn't have handed him the weapon of the prophecy.


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IMO, what we have is a Severus Snape, who, in canon, is berated and belittled by another DE for his lack of participation and dedication to the cause. Bella not only questions this, but also his loyalty. She makes it clear to her sister that she did not trust Severus to carry out the protection of Draco because she didn't feel that he carried out other things...that he just slithered back into his hole when the going got rough. It took his agreeing to the Unbreakable Vow to convince her.
The DE in question is also a crazed fanatic who is under the impression that only going to Azkaban for her master is good enough. Plus, she is downright jealous that she has fallen out of favour with her precious Dark Lord since the Ministry fiasco, and that Snape is rising in favour.


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  #65  
Old November 3rd, 2011, 9:21 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

Hmm? I posted something here but it got deleted. Did I do something wrong?

Edit: Oh nevermind, I just read the PM.


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Old November 3rd, 2011, 11:21 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by FurryDice View Post
IMO, that attitude was downright evil bigotry, and the actions they took based on the bigotry were also evil. Who did they think they were to decide who was worthy and unworthy to have magic and to live? Who did they think they were, murdering Muggles for fun? People did not join the DEs to sit around sipping firewhisky and whining about "mudbloods". They joined the DEs for personal gain, and to cause death and destruction in the name of their bigotry. I don't think any of them were innocent. IMO, the whole organisation was evil to the core.
They were the people who had magic first...and paid a terrible price for it. After generations of persecution, executions, witch burnings and other Muggle-initiated forms of trying to exterminate magical beings, Pureblood families had little love for Muggles and did not want to share their gift of magic with them, and a sense of bigotry grew from this. IMO, this is what Voldemort glommed onto and used for his own evil reason -- revenge against his Muggle father.

Yes, there were Purebloods like Bella and her ilk who enjoyed killing Muggles for the sake of it, but, I think most of the DEs were like Regulus Black and just wanted to maintain what the purists felt was "rightfully their's." I don't think all DEs were murderers. IMO, people like Severus, who was a half-blood but had been badly treated by most Muggles he'd had contact with, were looking to feel stronger, more important, or maybe just a part of something. Bad thing about becoming a DE, though: no way out but death.

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IMO, it is truly callous to not care that one's actions will cause someone to be murdered. IMO, it is evil to be a member of a racist group of murderers. IMO, whether or not Snape got the job, he would have given Voldemort the prophecy.
You're right. It was callous. It was uncaring. But, it wasn't evil. And, again, I state that I do not think that all DEs were murderers or torturers. And, our opinions differ greatly on whether Severus would have given Voldemort the prophecy or not if he'd gotten the job. I don't think it would have seemed as important since he'd have achieved the purpose he was sent for and that was what he would have been pleased to report to Voldemort.

Quote:
Well, separating Lily from James was what Snape hoped for, until he maybe started worrying that he wouldn't get what he wanted from Voldemort.
If Snape's concern had truly been for Lily, for Lily herself and not for his own feelings, he would have asked Dumbledore to protect the whole family, without being shamed into it. He would have considered Lily's feelings if it had been about Lily.

He knew he would feel grief if Lily died. He didn't want that to happen. He didn't want to go through what he was willing to cause to others.
I'm afraid I missed the part where Severus tried to separate Lily from James. He went along with Voldemort's assumption that he wanted Lily's life spared so he could have her, but, I think we can agree that Severus would have never expected that.

Immediate concern for a loved one in danger over those one does not know is a human trait. I can't really fault Severus for this. He agreed quickly enough to do "anything" to protect them all. There was no argument about that. So, while it would have been magnanimous for him to have asked to have them all protected right off, it wouldn't have been most peoples' reaction, IMO. But, he did the right thing in the end. I don't know what more he could have done.

Quote:
This wasn't a matter of picking which person to drag from a burning building. Snape could, if he cared a fig about Lily's feelings, have asked Dumbledore for her entire family to be kept safe.
This is a terrified young man, meeting with someone that could kill him on sight, or, at the very least imprison him, and not even hear him out about why he was meeting with him. I dare say he was trying to get to his point as quickly as possible and that Lily's safety was foremost on his mind. It wasn't Lily's feelings that he was frightened for at the moment, it was her very life. In the end, as I said, he did the right thing and asked for all their safety.

Quote:
It was hardly rocket science - Snape told Voldemort about a boy born at the end of July who would have the power to vanquish him. Not just a child born at the end of July, but a child born to those who had thrice defied Voldemort. That would narrow it down a lot. Snape knew that Voldemort was a murderer. The entire wizarding community knew that when Snape was sixteen, and people didn't say Voldemort's name out of sheer dread. Snape was not an idiot - he had to have known well that someone would be in mortal peril because of his actions.
Once again, it was wrong for Severus to carry the prophecy to Voldemort and to put anyone's life in danger, no matter whose.

Quote:
How was it going to be a "them or me" situation? Voldemort treated his followers like dirt, even with all their delusions of grandeur as DEs, but he didn't kill them randomly - the only time we see him doing that is in DH when he learns of the break-in at Gringotts. And he kills those DEs who betrayed him. He didn't seem to kill those who messed up - judging by the "quality" of his DEs, he would have very few left if he did that.
Since we don't see any interaction between Voldy and his crew in Voldy War I, we don't know for sure whether he dispatched the errant DE now and then in a way that would strike terror in the hearts of the rest or not. I can see him doing that and enjoying it.

So, if Severus was the slacker that Bella pegged him to be -- and she seemed to have Voldy's ear at that time -- and if he'd been sent to secure a job, I don't think he'd want to go back to Voldemort and say, "Oops. I got caught listening at the keyhole and didn't get the job," unless he had something equally important to take back with him.

In considering whether he'd be putting a family in danger or saving his own behind for not getting the position at Hogwarts, that's where the "them or me" comes in -- and self preservation usually goes with "me."

Quote:
IMO, being a DE is to play god. They decided they had the right to decide who was worthy or unworthy. Who deserved to live or die. They played judge, jury and executioner. Snape did this too - it was fine to call others mudblood, it was fine to help in the murders of others, but not Lily.
I don't personally see that, but, of course you're entitled to your opinion. I don't know of a time we're shown when Severus is in the position of judge, jury, and executioner, though. I don't think he or any other DEs had that power without Voldemort's say so.


Quote:
I don't see Snape and his fellow DEs as being that dimwitted and gullible. The wizarding community was at war. People were being murdered. People feared to say Voldemort's name, by the time Snape was sixteen. If they didn't know the true nature of the DEs, it was wilful ignorance, IMO.
People sometimes see what they want. Depending on what information Severus was being fed by the fledgling DEs he had contact with, he could have been told that the disappearances and deaths were just bad publicity to make LV and the DEs look bad. There is no canon one way or the other as to what he was told or what he believed. Only that he became a DE after leaving Hogwarts. Maybe that was preferable to going home and having his father beat on him some more.

Quote:
Using that word is a good reason not to trust someone, at a time when people are being murdered purely because others consider them "mudbloods" and that they are "tainting and diluting the pureblood standard". It doesn't mean that every DE is going to use that word, or that every untrustworthy person is going to use that word, but I do think it means that people who used that word were people to be extremely wary of.
Again, your opinion. I choose to differ. To me, it was only a very nasty word, but, unless it was back up with an action against someone by the user, it was still only a word.

Quote:
He was there as a DE, trying to get a job in order to spy on Dumbledore. Why wouldn't he have been listening, to see if anything useful came up? Sybill Trelawney thought he was trying to pick up interview tips, but that doesn't make it so.
That doesn't make it not so, either. There's nothing, IMO, that would have been said between Dumbledore and a potential staff member that would have been worth much. IMO, it was the change in Sybil's tone that got his attention and he may have heard her say "Dark Lord" or something as well. I think that's why he was listening when Aberforth caught him.


Quote:
If Snape had in any way been a reluctant DE, or hopeful that someone could conquer Voldemort, he wouldn't have handed him the weapon of the prophecy.
I've already stated why I think he gave Voldemort the prophecy. And, as I said, I don't think he actually analyzed it before he told it to Voldemort. To him it was either something to make up for not getting the job, or, possibly a way to earn an additional Brownie point and keep from being the "Errant DE of the Month" and roasted on a spit or something.

Quote:
The DE in question is also a crazed fanatic who is under the impression that only going to Azkaban for her master is good enough. Plus, she is downright jealous that she has fallen out of favour with her precious Dark Lord since the Ministry fiasco, and that Snape is rising in favour.
She was by the time we see her in HBP, but she may not have been that crazed, just a fanatic, during Voldy War I. Either way, she was still witness to Severus' action -- or inaction. She was not speaking of the current Voldy War, but the previous one, IMO, because she brought up about him being comfortable at Hogwarts while she was in Azkaban. So, she did not think him an up to snuff DE the first time around.

In closing, as we are so far from agreeing, and I feel that I am always repeating the same things over and over in reply to your posts, I think we should just agree to disagree and consider this done.


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  #67  
Old November 4th, 2011, 2:04 am
ShadowSonic  Male.gif ShadowSonic is offline
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

Well, the DEs are kind of wrong-headed if their whole thing is "Muggleborns are lower lifeforms", IMO:

Unless the Purebloods always had magical powers as far back as their history goes, wouldn't they also have muggleborns as the progenitors of their families? As in, the very first wizards who started their lineages in the first place were born to muggles?

If their whole bag was with muggles themselves then perhaps there would a modicum of logic to their ideology, but persecuting muggleborns really wouldn't have any basis since they themselves came from muggleborns really far in the past. And it isn't like Muggleborns have a choice if their parents were muggles.

But maybe I'm just over-analyzing.


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  #68  
Old November 4th, 2011, 2:51 am
LoonyLuna22  Female.gif LoonyLuna22 is offline
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

I agree with Minerva. Some of the Death Eater's beliefs stemmed from witch/wizard prosecutions from centuries ago when muggles burned them at the stake, ect. They wanted to keep magic to pureblooded families. Although these beliefs were biased and wrong they were not unfounded. Some of he DE's had been personally scorned by muggles (Snape's dad..) There were evil DE's (Bella, and of course the DE founder, Voldemort) and cowardly, cruel DE's (Luicius) and then there was Snape, who I feel joined more out of wanting comradery, and respect. His beliefs stemmed from the treatment from his father, growing up. Not every DE was a murderer. Snape seemed more messenger, which, unforunately, led to murder. This led to his redemption.
I stand by the biggest difference between Snape and DE's was his ability to love. He didn't love someone easy, either, like Lucius. Lucius chose a woman of good breeding, pureblooded, possibly financially secure. Whether he loved her or just deemed her worthy is questionable. Snape fell in love with a muggleborn, a Gryffindor no less, and devoted his entire life to her. I see him as loving her and not being obsessed because if he were obsessed with her he wouldn't have cared if Voldemort killed her. He couldn't have her anyway. It brings to mind obsessive fans of celebrities who seek to kill them because they know they can't have them. He truly loved her and wanted her happiness. I believe he could have shared in that happiness had he not made such bad choices..


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  #69  
Old November 4th, 2011, 3:28 am
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by ShadowSonic View Post
Well, the DEs are kind of wrong-headed if their whole thing is "Muggleborns are lower lifeforms", IMO:

Unless the Purebloods always had magical powers as far back as their history goes, wouldn't they also have muggleborns as the progenitors of their families? As in, the very first wizards who started their lineages in the first place were born to muggles?

If their whole bag was with muggles themselves then perhaps there would a modicum of logic to their ideology, but persecuting muggleborns really wouldn't have any basis since they themselves came from muggleborns really far in the past. And it isn't like Muggleborns have a choice if their parents were muggles.

But maybe I'm just over-analyzing.
No, that's a valid point and you might want to check the HP Lexicon for a history of magic or, there may be be information on a thread here on CoS about that.

Further discussion would be too far off topic for this thread, I think.


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  #70  
Old November 4th, 2011, 6:00 am
GrimeldaDursley  Female.gif GrimeldaDursley is offline
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

I think, for a change, that I am going to stick to the questions and answer as best I can how I see this character.

After reading DH, to what extent do you think is Snape responsible for what happened to the Potters?
No doubt, he does bear some resposibility for this, by telling Voldemort what he heard of the prophecy, a terrible chain of events followed.

Do you think Snape's character development arc is complete?

I would have to say, "Yes". He went from a man who didn't care if a family was killed to a man who tried to save as many lives as he could before his death.

To what extent are Snape's parents to blame for his later choices and to what extent are they his own responsibility?

I think to a degree they can be blamed, but once you grow up, you can't fall back on that, a child can be somewhat excused, but not an adult. Then your decisions are your own responsibilty.

Do you think Snape would have moved on if Lily had not died? Would he have turned to the good side in that case?

Maybe, maybe not.

Why do you think Snape was so reluctant to approach Lily? Would he have been interested in her if she had not been magical?

I think he was a shy, introverted kid, and no I don't think he would have been interested in her if she wasn't magical.

How did Hogwarts effect the friendship between Snape and Lily? We see that up until fifth year they consider themselves to be "best friends", despite the house system. Do you think they both worked to maintain the friendship?

I think it was hard to try to maintain a friendship being in different houses. I think they both probably worked very hard on it.

How would Snape's life have been different if he had managed to save their friendship?

He might have eventually come around to a better way of thinking.

Snape is revealed to have been acting throughout the series out of love for Lily, how does this effect your view of his actions in the series - his "murder" of Dumbledore, his treatment of Sirius?

I don't think either is related for his love for Lily. Though if he hadn't been so close to Dumbledore, the "murder" issue may have never come up. So maybe that one I'll say was related. He thought Sirius had revealed the location of Lily and James. He thought Sirius was a murderer, like nearly everyone else. As to other incidents, they just never liked each other
.
How do the revelations of DH impact your view of Snape's treatment of Harry and Neville throughout the series?
While I can see why he'd resent Harry, there was no justification for his ill treatment of him. And Neville, I don't see any real reason at all.

Do you think he wanted or needed Harry's forgiveness on some level?

Perhaps so, but maybe not so much forgiveness as an understanding.

Do you agree with the author's take on Snape's character as revealed in interviews?

I really can't answer that.

Which elements do you think make Snape the most controversial character of the
series?

All his actions make us think he might be on the bad side through almost the whole series. Yet we see him in the Order, but there's always that question of whose side is he on for a lot of people.

What do you think are Snape's major strengths? What are his major flaws?
I think he was a darn clever wizard, he was intelligent, he was capable of love. His flaws: I think he became wrapped up in his own misery, and for a while was not able or not willing to see the bigger picture of things.

If you had to summarize Snape's character to someone who had never read the books
what would you tell them?

They are in for a shock.

What do you reckon Snape valued most in life?

Redemption.


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Last edited by GrimeldaDursley; November 4th, 2011 at 6:07 am.
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  #71  
Old November 4th, 2011, 7:45 am
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by BrianTung View Post
Ehh, I'm not sure I agree with that. I agree that he was responsible for putting some family at risk even if no one had been killed, but that doesn't mean he wasn't also responsible for their actual deaths. Intent follows the bullet (or the wand, I guess). Trying to prevent their deaths after Voldemort had locked and loaded is a mitigating factor, but it doesn't entirely absolve Snape of responsibility.

In other words, if Snape had not passed on what he had heard of the prophecy, both the Potters and the Longbottoms would have been just any other Resistance members; but because he did pass it on, it became essentially a coin flip as to which one of them would be especially targeted. To me, that's the critical impact of Snape's actions, and that responsibility doesn't entirely persist or vanish based on the outcome.
I agree that the responsibility does not entirely vanish based on his having gone to Dumbledore. However, I do believe that his going to Dumbledore is a mitigating factor in considering the extent of his culpability.

In my own religious tradition, many factors weigh in to considering the extent of culpability for an action. The fact that Severus Snape actively sought to prevent the Potters' deaths - first by going to Dumbledore and then by serving as a spy to his own peril - would be considered one such mitigating factor. Another possible mitigating factor would be his state of mind at the time of carrying the prophecy. I'm not arguing that his state of mind is a mitigating factor because we actually don't know his state of mind. I'm saying that my tradition would consider this factor in weighing the extent of his culpability because this factor would determine the extent to which Snape was operating under absolute freedom of will - i.e., was he thrilled to be carrying the prophecy to Voldemort? (freedom of will) or was he terrified of NOT carrying the prophecy to Voldemort? (limited freedom of will)). IF his freedom of will was limited in some way (note: this is a hypothetical, not a statement), then his culpability would be considered to be further limited. According to my best understanding, there are no number of mitigating factors that would eliminate his culpability entirely.

Note that I'm not trying to force these considerations on anyone else. However, they do inform my understanding of the context and the character... and the text overall.

As for the Wizard-Muggle issue...

Wizards did endure centuries of genocide perpetrated by Muggles, and this is where the prejudice against Muggleborns originated. According to Professor Binns, I believe, the Wizards who accepted this prejudice believed - wrongly - that Muggleborns would ally themselves with their Muggle friends and relatives in the genocide against Wizards. Muggleborns were viewed by these Wizards as potential spies and therefore untrustworthy.

In actuality, Muggleborns were quite as capable of being persecuted as Halfbloods and Purebloods - possibly even moreso, given that they were often in actual contact with Muggle society. In fact, this is how Nearly Headless Nick nearly lost his head. (source: Beedle the Bard)

So the prejudice did not come out of nowhere. It came from being nearly wiped out by the society that the Muggleborns were born into. The problem is that the fear and suspicion of Muggleborns evolved into a lingering animosity that did not abate in some segments of Wizard society even as Muggleborns proved their alliance and loyalty to Wizard society.


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  #72  
Old November 4th, 2011, 11:17 am
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Melaszka  Female.gif Melaszka is offline
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

The issue of the DEs' motivation for anti-Muggle/anti-Muggleborn prejudice is interesting and I can see how it is indirectly relevant to the discussion, so I'm reluctant to close it down entirely, but if you're going to carry on talking about it, please ensure that it is crystal clear in every individual post how this relates back to Snape and that the bulk of every post is directly about Snape. There are a few off-topic posts here at the moment. Thanks


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Old November 4th, 2011, 11:58 am
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

After reading DH, to what extent do you think is Snape responsible for what happened to the Potters?

Severus is responsible for carrying the prophecy to Voldemort. While he probably did not carry it with the intent of someone getting hurt/killed, he also didn't seem to care what the consequences were. This makes him responsible that an impetus was provided to Voldemort to go looking for "The Chosen One," which he might not have done otherwise. So, Severus cannot be let off the hook completely. While I don't think his intent was to get anyone killed, his lack of caring did eventually lead to that.

I do not, however, think he was responsible for the deaths of the Potters, only for Voldemort's seeking to kill them. They had every protection possible, because of Severus' meeting with Dumbledore, and would have been safe if they hadn't been betrayed. That is where the true responsibility lies -- with the betrayer, Pettigrew, and the actualy murderer, Voldemort.

Do you think Snape's character development arc is complete?

Yes. He went from someone who was careless and uncaring about human life to someone who only watched those die that he couldn't save.

To what extent are Snape's parents to blame for his later choices and to what extent are they his own responsibility?

It is the parents' responsibility to provide a child with the "tools" to live their life with. It is the child's responsibility, as they grow, to learn to use them. If the child is not provided with the proper tools for healthy physical and emotional growth, then it is much harder for that child to function.

Yes, once we reach adulthood we are responsible for our actions, but, while we may know what we are suppose to do, if we don't know how to do it we will probably make a lot more mistakes in our lives while trying to figure it out.

So, yes, I think that Severus' parents bear a lot of responsibility for his having to struggle harder to get his life on the right path. Once he did, he continued to struggle, as we see, with a lack of self esteem, caring, and compassion. But, once he was able to overcome that, he did a bang up job at the end.

Do you think Snape would have moved on if Lily had not died? Would he have turned to the good side in that case?

I think he would have always had a special place for Lily, but, if he had not taken part of the guilt for her death onto himself, I think he would have moved on. I'm not sure he'd have ever had a "meaningful" relationship with another woman because I don't think he had ever seen one -- he sure didn't at home.

I believe, given the opportunity to get out of the DEs, that Severus would have eventually turned to the good side. I do think, had he remained a DE until Voldemort's first "demise," he would have turned to the good side before the next Voldy War and fought against LV from the start because of what he'd seen from the inside.

Why do you think Snape was so reluctant to approach Lily? Would he have been interested in her if she had not been magical?

I think he was scared, socially awkward, and ashamed of his appearance. I really think, looking at Severus at that age, that it took a lot for him to work up the courage to finally approach Lily.

With his experience with his Muggle father, and (since Petunia seems to indicate he was known among Muggles) with possible other negative experiences, I'd say he wouldn't have approached Lily if she had not been magical. That was the common ground that, IMO, gave him the courage to step forward. He wasn't just looking for a playmate, he was looking for someone he had something in common with and he found that in Lily.

I do think he grew to love her over their years as friends, and, would have continued to love her even if she'd lost her magical powers.

How did Hogwarts effect the friendship between Snape and Lily? We see that up until fifth year they consider themselves to be "best friends", despite the house system. Do you think they both worked to maintain the friendship?

Obviously, Hogwarts' House system put a major strain on their friendship. Their time together was limited, they were exposed to totally different philosophies by Housemates and were influenced by them.

IMO, Lily was "moving on" and moving away from their friendship even before the 5th year. She was beautiful, popular, and talented. I'm sure that she got a lot of flack from her female Housemates about how she could do much better than Severus. So, I feel there was already a crack in the friendship prior to the "Mudblood" incident. In the memories we never see her asking Severus why he is interested in the Dark Arts -- does he want to study to be an Auror? Does he want to someday teach DADA? She immediately assumes that everything he is doing has a negative motive. She seldom gives him a chance to answer her questions, but seems to answer them for him the way she sees things. While these are probably pretty normal under the circumstances, they also indicate to me that she was not feeling the same level of friendship that Severus was.

I think he felt this too and was clinging to their friendship because it was all he had. I don't think he really considered Avery and Mulciber "friends," but, he could hardly ignore or avoid his Housemates anymore than Lily could her's.

IMO, their friendship was doomed from the time they were sorted into the different Houses.

How would Snape's life have been different if he had managed to save their friendship?

I think he'd have had a more positive influence in his life and might possibly not have joined the DEs. (But, then we wouldn't have had the HP series, either.)

Snape is revealed to have been acting throughout the series out of love for Lily, how does this effect your view of his actions in the series - his "murder" of Dumbledore, his treatment of Sirius?

I never considered his killing of Dumbledore as "murder," as it was a pre-arranged mercy killing.

His and Sirius' animosities went back to school days and it may have been easy for him to believe that Sirius turned on the Potters, since he'd had some negative experiences with Sirius on his own (even Sirius' friend, Lupin, thought he was guilty, and he liked him).

Once he learned of Sirius innocence, he worked with him as another member of the Order, though, even though each sniped at each other constantly when they met.

How do the revelations of DH impact your view of Snape's treatment of Harry and Neville throughout the series?

I can understand the animosity toward Harry and some of the reasons for it, but it was still wrong to go to some of the extremes that Severus did because of his hatred for James. He should not have transferred that hatred from the father to the son.

I don't see anything in DH that would apply to his treatment of Neville. IMO, it was total frustration and a lack of his ability (or desire) to adapt his teaching methods to cope with Neville's inadequacies. Maybe he thought Neville would eventually outgrow his clumsiness.

Do you think he wanted or needed Harry's forgiveness on some level?

Like Grimelda, I think he wanted and needed Harry's understanding -- I think that was more important to him because he knew that once Harry understood the things he'd done and the reasons for them that forgiveness would follow, because that's the way Harry was. He'd seen it in Harry for seven years. I think he knew Harry that well after all that time.

Do you agree with the author's take on Snape's character as revealed in interviews?
Which elements do you think make Snape the most controversial character of the series?


I don't listen to or read JKR's interviews that much, because, depending on when they were done and how much of the plot she was trying to keep under wraps, she would say different things about different characters.

Severus is a very polarizing character. It seems people either like him or dislike him. There are very few who are neutral. One of the things I think that makes him that way is that he's like a mirror. IMO, we can all see a bit of Severus in ourselves and we are either willing to accept that and consider that we, too, have flaws and shortcomings, or, we fight against it and just cast him aside as an "evil" person who cannot be anything like us.

Having enough of my own flaws and shortcomings, seeing Severus' redemption arc is a very positive thing and gives me some hope.

What do you think are Snape's major strengths? What are his major flaws?

Major strengths: loyalty, courage, love, determination, devotion.
Major flaws: inability to let go of the past; not adapting teaching methods that weren't working with students like Neville; stubbornes.

If you had to summarize Snape's character to someone who had never read the books what would you tell them?

He was a very complex character who loved deeply, made serious mistakes, worked hard to set those things right, and, in the end, died a hero.

What do you reckon Snape valued most in life?

I think there were two things: Love, because he'd only truly cared for few people -- Lily, Dumbledore, and, eventually Harry. He loved Lily until the day he died. He cared deeply for Dumbledore as a friend, confidante, and mentor. And, I think he saw in Harry how much it meant to be loved, by your family and your friends, and watching how Harry loved them and what he risked for them, I feel that Severus did grow to care for Harry as the story progressed. Unfortunately, by the time he did he couldn't show it because of his cover as a spy (which, IMO, made him increase his outward signs of dislike).

The other thing was loyalty -- that you be true to your real cause, and follow through with that no matter what it takes. Once he had pledged his loyalty to Dumbledore, it was unwavering, no matter what was asked of him or how upset he got at times, he still carried out what he had to do. I think this was another thing that he saw in Harry and was impressed with. Harry was fiercely loyal to his friends.

I don't think Voldmort ever had Snape's true loyalty or he wouldn't have left him no matter what he asked or did.


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  #74  
Old November 4th, 2011, 12:47 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

Thanks, Mel. I trust these ruminations of mine will be on-topic.

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Originally Posted by MinervasCat View Post
I have to disagree. The Purebloodists felt they had a gift and that it was being tainted and diluted by intermingling with non-magic beings. Their idea was to maintain a pureblood standard. Not a nice thing, but keeping Muggleborns from practicing magic and keeping Muggles "in their place," while pompous, prejudice, and nasty, is not, in itself "evil."
I see what you're saying. I agree to some extent. Being a Pureblood-ist does not make someone evil per se. I don't regard either Horace Slughorn or Phineas Nigellus as evil, not a bit of it, but they do betray their Pureblood-ist bias on occasion (Horace is a lot more affable than Phineas, of course). Not all Pureblood-ists were Death Eaters ... Blaise Zabini is an example of an ardent Pureblood-ist who shows no sign in canon of wanting to join Voldemort.

However: the DEs are a whole other kettle of fish. They are always portrayed in the text as wizards who are prepared to do evil things against other wizards who don't match their notion of pureblood purity.

And while individual Pureblood-ists themselves may not be evil people, Pureblood-ism is, inherently, worrying. Any system of thought that regards another group of people as sub-human and inferior has inevitably led to atrocities being perpetrated against that particular people-group.

An important distinction has to be made, I think, between calling a particular prejudice 'evil' and demonising particular characters. Few human beings are out-and-out evil, IMO, but that doesn't diminish anyone's personal responsibility for joining a racist organisation, neither does it deny that apparently normal people are capable of doing some atrociously bad things. Becoming a DE doesn't mean you are an evil person beyond any hope of redemption -- that is certainly not how I regard Severus Snape, who turned his back on the DEs! Neither does it mean we should sanitise the DE agenda as portrayed in canon.

So, then ... do I regard Snape as an evil person? - no, I do not.

Did he commit a great folly and wrong in his youth by willingly joining a group who by their own admission delighted in persecuting, torturing and killing Muggles and Muggleborns? -- yes, I believe he did.

Did he pay a terrible price for these sins? -- yes, I believe he did.

Was he redeemed, as a character? -- in my eyes, an unequivocal yes.


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Old November 4th, 2011, 1:12 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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Originally Posted by FurryDice View Post
Even if the Potters had not been betrayed then, they would live the rest of their lives as targets at the top of Voldemort's hit-list, because he believed their child was the threat mentioned in the prophecy that Snape brought to him.
I agree. But even before the Prophecy was made and Voldemort chose them, they were targets, they feared Voldemort and his DEs enough to go into hiding. From Snape's point of view, I think he was responsible for making the Potters specific targets because of the Prophecy.

Quote:
The Potters were never safe once Voldemort chose to go after their baby. I don't think anything removes the responsibility of his actions and their consequences from Snape.
The Potters would forever (until Voldemort was defeated) be targets; they were already targets, high risk targets, high enough for not just Lily, but also James to go into hiding (when Sirius, Peter and Remus were all working as Order members and fighting Voldemort and his DEs) from Voldemort before they knew of the Prophecy. Once Voldemort chose Harry, and assuming they knew about it, I agree that would make them double targets and the second one would be because of Snape. Not the first one, and I believe that was as serious as Snape's mistake, because they were in hiding - the whole family, which James would probably not consent to unless there was a real risk of getting killed IMO.

Quote:
That the bullet was coming directly for them in the first place is because of Snape.
Absolutely. The bullet was coming towards them because Snape took what he heard to Voldemort. But, I differ from many others by having a different view of Snape's culpability in the Potters deaths. The Potters should have lived. And that was made possible (their safety after they had been made specific targets) by Snape's information to Dumbledore on the hill. So, yes, Snape did make Harry and by extension the Potters specific targets, but by coming while the Potters were alive to give information that should have saved the Potters removed Snape's responsibility for their deaths IMO, because they should have lived; lived because of Snape (that is his information). So, while Snape was responsible for making them targets, he also assumed responsibility for undoing that act and in doing so, he removed himself from being part of the group that actually killed the Potters - Peter and Voldemort. JMO.

Quote:
I don't see it. Passing information that will get people killed is a mistake, and there's nothing that I can see that would make it not a mistake.
I agree that passing information that will get people killed is a mistake. But, passing information that should have saved the said people? If those people do not act on the information, is Snape still to be blamed for that? That is where I disagree, because I feel Snape need not be blamed for that.

Quote:
Snape says himself in Spinner's End that he was at Hogwarts on the Dark Lord's orders the night he fell. It's something Bellatrix could easily check if Snape was lying. And Voldemort would not have been too pleased if Snape had started working at Hogwarts without his permission. I think that Snape changed, but it's also canon that Voldemort sent him to spy on Dumbledore, that Voldemort wanted him to spin a story for Dumbledore and to get a job at Hogwarts.
Then, do you think Snape came to Dumbledore on the hill because he also had in mind at that time about Voldemort's order and his anguish was partly an act to get a job at Hogwarts?


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  #76  
Old November 4th, 2011, 2:38 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

Quote:
Originally Posted by The_Green_Woods View Post
I agree. But even before the Prophecy was made and Voldemort chose them, they were targets, they feared Voldemort and his DEs enough to go into hiding. From Snape's point of view, I think he was responsible for making the Potters specific targets because of the Prophecy.
Yes, he was responsible for making them specific targets. To me, it doesn't diminish his responsibility if they were already not-as-high-priority-as-Prophecy-Baby targets. Every hour of life belonged to them, and I don't see any action that cuts their life short as somehow of lesser harm because they already lead dangerous lives because of the threat of Voldemort. To me, that they were already in danger from Death Eaters is moot to the point of Snape choosing to put their lives in more danger.

Quote:
Absolutely. The bullet was coming towards them because Snape took what he heard to Voldemort. But, I differ from many others by having a different view of Snape's culpability in the Potters deaths. The Potters should have lived. And that was made possible (their safety after they had been made specific targets) by Snape's information to Dumbledore on the hill.
But that does not remove the threat of Voldemort, that simply shifts the responsibility for the Potters not getting murdered onto someone else. If the threat of Voldemort wanting to murder the Prophecy Baby is not removed, then I do not see that Snape undid the harm he did, because that is the harm he did.

Quote:
I agree that passing information that will get people killed is a mistake. But, passing information that should have saved the said people? If those people do not act on the information, is Snape still to be blamed for that? That is where I disagree, because I feel Snape need not be blamed for that.
I was under the impression that they did act on the information that Snape provided. That was why they went under the Fidelius Charm. Snape's information failed to save them, and failed to remove the threat of Voldemort to the prophecy Baby. Even after Snape brought the information, Voldemort was still seeking and intending to murder the baby. In fact, Voldemort was continuing his attempts to kill Harry up to the day he died for the final and last time, almost two decades after the Prophecy was uttered.

I think Snape tried to stop what he had started, and that that was a good thing. I used to think before DH and the whole "For Lily" thing that he was so bitter all the time because his attempts to stop the damage he wrought kept going so fubar. But at any rate, I think Snape's journey was about recognizing and accepting the responsibility for his actions, and not so much about undoing them so they didn't count. I'd say that the latter was an impossible task.


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Old November 4th, 2011, 4:32 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pearl_Took View Post
Thanks, Mel. I trust these ruminations of mine will be on-topic.

I see what you're saying. I agree to some extent. Being a Pureblood-ist does not make someone evil per se. I don't regard either Horace Slughorn or Phineas Nigellus as evil, not a bit of it, but they do betray their Pureblood-ist bias on occasion (Horace is a lot more affable than Phineas, of course). Not all Pureblood-ists were Death Eaters ... Blaise Zabini is an example of an ardent Pureblood-ist who shows no sign in canon of wanting to join Voldemort.

However: the DEs are a whole other kettle of fish. They are always portrayed in the text as wizards who are prepared to do evil things against other wizards who don't match their notion of pureblood purity.

And while individual Pureblood-ists themselves may not be evil people, Pureblood-ism is, inherently, worrying. Any system of thought that regards another group of people as sub-human and inferior has inevitably led to atrocities being perpetrated against that particular people-group.

An important distinction has to be made, I think, between calling a particular prejudice 'evil' and demonising particular characters. Few human beings are out-and-out evil, IMO, but that doesn't diminish anyone's personal responsibility for joining a racist organisation, neither does it deny that apparently normal people are capable of doing some atrociously bad things. Becoming a DE doesn't mean you are an evil person beyond any hope of redemption -- that is certainly not how I regard Severus Snape, who turned his back on the DEs! Neither does it mean we should sanitise the DE agenda as portrayed in canon.

So, then ... do I regard Snape as an evil person? - no, I do not.

Did he commit a great folly and wrong in his youth by willingly joining a group who by their own admission delighted in persecuting, torturing and killing Muggles and Muggleborns? -- yes, I believe he did.

Did he pay a terrible price for these sins? -- yes, I believe he did.

Was he redeemed, as a character? -- in my eyes, an unequivocal yes.
I agree, Pearl. I was basing my "not all DEs were evil murderers" thought on the premise that I don't see the Black family sending their favorite son off to be a murderer, and, I'm pretty sure that Severus and Draco weren't.

But, yes, the idea of any group holding itself above another is wrong and when that group uses thug and terrorist tactics to achieve it's goals then the group, as an entity, is evil in its intent. Joining the group was wrong, and stupid. But, I'm against painting all members of a group with a broad brush as many join for reasons that really have nothing to do with the ideals of the group (peer pressure, status, etc.) and have the ridiculous feeling that they can get out if things really get too terrible. I think we see this a lot in gang members these days.

So, same as you, I see Severus as foolish for joining the DEs, and his actions with the prophecy were callous and uncaring. It should have mattered to him that some family was going to die, whether he knew them or not. So, his thoughtlessness and lack of concern did come back to haunt him in the end. IMO, his attempts to save the Potters did make up for a lot of that, but, just having set the wheels in motion without any concern for the consequences certainly counts against him.


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But, you were still, and could not hear or see
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Old November 4th, 2011, 5:28 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

If Snape wasn't acting as a soldier when he was a DE, then what DID he do? What purposes would non-soldiers DE serve to Voldemort?

He must be quite lucky if he avoided having to hurt/maim/kill anyone in the time he was with them seeing how they were at WAR with everyone else.


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Old November 4th, 2011, 6:20 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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If Snape wasn't acting as a soldier when he was a DE, then what DID he do? What purposes would non-soldiers DE serve to Voldemort?
Espionage, for one. I suspect Voldemort would have known that Snape was a talented Occlumens (he was himself, after all, a talented Legilimens, and surely would have recognized a worthy opponent), and that would have made him much more valuable as a spy than as a foot soldier. I did think that the way Snape was caught at the keyhole was a bit clumsy, but I think that was the sort of work he would have been suited for.


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Old November 4th, 2011, 6:23 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.6

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If Snape wasn't acting as a soldier when he was a DE, then what DID he do? What purposes would non-soldiers DE serve to Voldemort?
From what I understand the only information we have on Snape's duties as DE, was that he was used by Voldemort as a spy.

HBP, Spinner's End
"You asked where I was when the Dark Lord fell. I was where he ordered me to be, at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, because he wished me to spy upon Albus Dumbledore. You know, I presume that it was on the Dark Lords orders that I took up the post?"


We know from Karkaroff in GoF that Voldemort had a network of spies. So I think that previous to being sent to spy on Dumbledore, that Snape was already part of this network of spies.


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