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Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4



 
 
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  #281  
Old February 22nd, 2011, 4:11 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

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Originally Posted by SadiraSnape View Post
Absolutely he was redeemed; I just believe he could have been equally redeemed outside Hogwarts' walls. The important thing was not that he taught Potions or had anything to do with Hogwarts; it was that he saw the error of his ways and joined the side of Light and the Order, which he could have done no matter what he did.

I believe Dumbledore played on Severus' emotions in order to get him to stay on at Hogwarts, not to work on the side of Light. Staying at Hogwarts was probably the last place Severus needed to be, given his temperament.
It is possible. I can only suppose that Dumbledore had some sort of plan that required Snape to be a professor that was never fully realized-- but having Snape at Hogwarts was a high price for many people to pay, and I'm not sure it was worth it in the end. If the goal was only personal redemption fopr Snape, it probably would have been better played out elsewhere, although I don't think he would have gotten as far as he did without Hogwarts.

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This what I was getting at. Staying on at Hogwarts is, IMO, what froze Snape at a certain point in his emotional and psychological development, and is what caused him to be unable (unwilling?) to move on with his life.
Hmmm. Well, I'm generally opposed to the idea of giving Snape a position at Hogwarts just because it would be good for Snape and no regard to others who suffer because of it, so I hope that wasn't Dumbledore's motivation. But I'm not sure that Hogwarts was what was stunting Snape's growth. I think his Death Eater path began there, and maybe it would have been good if he faced that and took responsibility for it. Mind you, I don't think that worked very well, but I don't think it would have necessarily been better elsewhere if Snape didn't have to think about his Death Eater beginnings. I would think the whole situation was awkard for everyone involved though, given that some of the students there when Snape first started as professor would remember him running with the Death Eater Wannabe gang as a student, and his actions towards Muggleborns.


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  #282  
Old February 22nd, 2011, 4:18 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

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Originally Posted by ReelBigFish View Post
I truly see nothing in Snapes words or behaviour to indicate that he cared for Harry and in fact the strongest evidence he does not is when he is asked outright by DD and shows his patronus. Snape only cared for himself and in a strange way for Lily.
Emphasis mine.

I think Severus came to care for Harry, if in no other way than as a student at Hogwarts who was almost always exasperating, annoying, and constantly breaking the rules. But IMO it was more than that -- I believe Severus came to understand that there was more of Lily inside that James-ian package, and he cared for the Lily part of Harry.

I don't believe Severus cared about himself at all. I believe a lot of his manner as we see it in the books is down to a deep-seated self-loathing. And what is "strange" about his love for Lily? Love is love, and it's love that saved Severus Snape.

BTW, this week's Last Icon Maker Standing topic was Good Snape/Bad Snape. The entries are up and can be seen here.


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  #283  
Old February 22nd, 2011, 4:19 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

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Originally Posted by ReelBigFish View Post
[b]Are you suggesting that James and Sirius are responsible for Snapes actions and behaviour?? If so I could not disagree more they had nothing to do with him and Lily not being friends that was down to Snape and his behaviour. Lily tried to get him away from the Dark Arts and Snape chose not to listen to her before SWM. It was Snape alone who was responsible for his choices. He did not lose Lily to anyone - he drove her away. She did not date James for a long time after SWM. Snape was already on the wrong path and it was not up to Lily to save him.
I agree with you 100%. But, I do think that Snape sometimes saw his choices as other people's fault. I think one of the biggest signs of how stunted Snape was was his inability to admit his responsibility for his own actions. I think Snape's choice not tho accept responsibility is what prevented him from turning away from the Death Eater path he had chosen. I don't think it was until he started to accept that he took part in antagonizing his rivals and was actively participating and supporting bigotry at Hogwarts during his schooldays that he started to grow.

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Originally Posted by SadiraSnape View Post
I think Severus came to care for Harry, if in no other way than as a student at Hogwarts who was almost always exasperating, annoying, and constantly breaking the rules. But IMO it was more than that -- I believe Severus came to understand that there was more of Lily inside that James-ian package, and he cared for the Lily part of Harry.

I don't believe Severus cared about himself at all. I believe a lot of his manner as we see it in the books is down to a deep-seated self-loathing. And what is "strange" about his love for Lily? Love is love, and it's love that saved Severus Snape.
I think Snape's motive for agreeing to protect Harry was because it made himself feel better about what happened to Lily. I do think Snape valued his own feelings far more than other people's, and that Lily only had value in his world because of his feelings for her. I think the way he grew most was finally setting that aside, and realizing that the war wasn't ever going to be about making Severus Snape feel better. Harry needed to die so Voldemort could be defeated, not kept alive to please Snape. I realize that situation sucked more for Harry, but in my opinion Snape was finally working to defeat Voldemort at the end without strings attached.


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Last edited by OldMotherCrow; February 22nd, 2011 at 4:35 pm. Reason: closed quote
  #284  
Old February 22nd, 2011, 4:44 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

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Originally Posted by KendraD View Post
I used to think that Snape was needlessly stuck in the past, but look at how the past affected Snape's life. No, I do not think after Lily died he would be able to live with himself if he was not doing what only he could to protect Lily's son.Yet, he could have had a better life, one with a lot less danger and Lily in it (if not his wife, at least still his best friend).

After re-reading the series I looked at Snape's actions differently. I thought that he was very bitter for holding a grudge against a dead man and taking it out on his son. But knowing the full story I think that Snape blamed James, Sirus, and Lupin for him losing Lily as his best friend and later forever. If they would have just let him be after taking the O.W.L., Lily never would have had to come to his defense probably making fifteen year old Severus embarrassed that a girl, the girl that he liked coming to his rescue causing him to retaliate with the unforgivable word that was the last straw. Lily was probably the only one in Snape's life who could have got him away from the dark arts, but instead losing her to his rival sent him farther on the wrong path causing him to be come a death eater and unknowingly sending Voldemort to kill her.

That is why I think Snape was still bitter towards Sirus and Lupin and it aided him in being a double agent. The best lies have some truth to them. Snape used his old hatred for James to pretend to hate Harry. ( He could not have befriended Harry the way Lupin did with 'fellow' death eaters' children around and still claim to be on Voldemort's side).
Oh, I think he could have. Crouch junior as Moody did. He could have pulled that off. After all he was pulling off working for Dumbledore wasn't he? I think there was a part of Snape that couldn't for love or money accept Harry for who he was. Everything he did for Harry was "For Lily."


  #285  
Old February 22nd, 2011, 5:02 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

I don't think that Snape being involved in Harry's life "for Lily" is a bad thing. Aren't Lupin and Sirius interested in Harry because of James? Before they meet Harry and spend time with him they don't really know him. So it isn't like they know Harry as a person and that's why they care about what happens to him. They care out of loyalty to their friend.

Also, a lot of people will do something for a cause in memory of a loved one. I don't consider that a bad thing so I don't look down on Snape's motivation initially being his love for Lily.

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Originally Posted by TreacleTartlet View Post
Lily was probably the only good influence Severus had at school, and losing her as a friend I think did seal his fate to become a DE. Not that I am blaming Lily for this, as it was ultimately Snape's choice. He could have turned his back on his budding DE friends earlier, but didn't see the danger of going down that path. However, we know from his turning against Voldemort that he later deeply regretted this choice.
I agree and I don't blame Lily either. I just see what happened as the most likely outcome for someone in Severus's position and with his background. The only good influence in his life was taken away and there were no other resources (that we've seen) in the school to help children with his needs. There were no guidance counselors or groups dedicated to helping children like him. Instead he was in a house that contained some budding DE, and they were the ones that befriended him. He was vulnerable and IMO they were able to prey upon his indifference towards muggles and interest in dark magic (though IMO he was just interested in all kinds of magic). Once he lost Lily he probably thought he had nothing else in life except for these other "friends" and likely thought that what he needed to do was be in a gang in order to counter the gang that was bothering him.

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As for what Snape thought of Harry, I do think he grew to care about what happened to him, even if he still could not come to like Harry. A person can thoroughly dislike another, but ultimately still care if that person is going to be harmed or to be killed. It is a basic human instinct, it is a part of our humanity. We instinctively reach out to help strangers in the street if they fall. I think we see that Severus lost some of this basic instinct whilst he was a DE, afterall there is no place for compassion when one is a DE. Yet, in the Pensieve memories we are told that Severus saves those he can, which in turn tells us that he indeed has compassion,and the human instinct to care for others.

When Severus is told by Dumbledore that Harry must die at the hands of Voldemort, his reaction is that of horror and he protests.

Dumbledore opened his eyes. Snape looked horrified.

“You have kept him alive so that he can die at the right moment?”

“Don’t be shocked, Severus. How many men and women have you watched die?”

“Lately, only those whom I could not save,” said Snape.
(DH, The Prince's Tale)

Dumbledore's question here makes me think that he hadn't realised just how far Snape had come along the path of redemption. That he hadn't realised that, Severus had regained his natural instinct to care and wouldn't watch people die if he could save them.

Dumbledore follows this with the question of whether Snape cares for Harry. But instead of answering the question with a straight answer, Snape produces his Patronus. This action struck me as protesting too much, and that Snape himself was in denial that he did indeed care about Harry's fate. In fact, I think that it is only when Severus is lying dying on the floor of the Shreiking Shack that he realises that he cares about the fate of this boy who he still dislikes immmensely, and why he gave Harry so many extraneous memories. Memories that are intensely personal and tell the secrets he once wanted no one to know. At the time he thinks Harry also is about to die, and I think he feels he owed Harry the truth.
I completely agree on all of the above. IMO, I also think he grew to grudgingly respect Harry in that last year at least.


  #286  
Old February 22nd, 2011, 5:09 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

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Originally Posted by SadiraSnape View Post
I believe Severus came to understand that there was more of Lily inside that James-ian package, and he cared for the Lily part of Harry.
I agree. This also is, what keeps me valueing Snape's character so less - it's likely me and due to what I value most in life, but I can't bring myself to respect an adult who is neither able to look over an (for everyone else) apparently wrong misinterpretation of Harry as 'James' son' - other teachers, according to Dumbledore's words, described Harry as modest while Snape wanted to see him as arrogant from their first meet-up on -, nor manages to see anything else than the long dead woman he loved in this boy.

That's what always makes me shiver when I read about Snape's last words in DH. I don't find this scene moving in a positive way, but emotionally very exhausting, because I think Snape still doesn't manage to see the boy, but not the mother.
From what we have on paper I can't see how he ever personally cared for the boy or at least recognised that there is a boy, with very own feelings, very own actions and far from the image of his parents James or Lily, whom he never met. How could an orphan copy these parents' characteristics into his own behaviour that strongly and develop no own persona at all?

So I believe the observation of the other teachers about a modest child is true, but not Snape's view, but which tells a lot about his character and why, as we see, he treats Harry prejudiced to such a great extend. He never tried to see that there is a, in my view also very strong and unique, human besides being James' and Lily's son.


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  #287  
Old February 22nd, 2011, 7:30 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

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Originally Posted by gertiekeddle View Post

So I believe the observation of the other teachers about a modest child is true, but not Snape's view, but which tells a lot about his character and why, as we see, he treats Harry prejudiced to such a great extend. He never tried to see that there is a, in my view also very strong and unique, human besides being James' and Lily's son.
What makes these books so interesting to me is that Harry and Snape BOTH see what they want to see in the other. The prejudice goes both ways, imo, because misunderstanding each other is what keeps Snape's secret safe for the entire series.

From the first banquet in Book One onward, Harry believes that Snape is hurting him and trying to go against Dumbledore until it is proven to him (by both Quirrelmort and Dumbledore) that Snape was actually trying to save him. Harry continues to blame Snape for the pain in his scar through OotP while everyone else tells him it has to do with Voldemort.

Neither Snape nor Harry sees the other quite clearly, even though they almost reach some type of understanding several times.

In OotP, Snape sees Harry's memories of Dudley and the unhappy childhood, and in reverse, Harry sees Snape's memories of being bullied and feels pity for him. But the death of Sirius sweeps that all away, so Snape isn't the only one who is overly emotional about a loved-one's death, something else he and Harry have in common but they won't recognize it in the other.

Another time Harry almost understands Snape (without knowing it) is when Harry starts to read the Half-Blood Prince's Book and enjoys getting to know "the boy who had been so clever, who had helped him so much." Harry even imagines that the Prince is his father and asks Lupin about whether it could be true, which it isn't.

But the point is made that Harry actually likes the genius of the Prince while hating Snape, even though Snape has both sides to his character all the while.

My main point is this: Snape dislikes one part of Harry's character that reminds him of James, while caring about the side that reminds him of Lily.

Harry likes the inner Prince side of Snape, while hating him for his outward personality.

They actually have alot more in common than either would like to admit, including love for Lily and trust in Dumbledore. More than any other two characters, they mirror the other.

When Snape kills Dumbledore on the Tower, Harry has a strong and direct reason to hate him. But his first impulse is to somehow get Snape and Dumbledore back together again so it would make sense, and so he didn't have to hate him.

Terror tore at Harry;s heart. ... He had to get to Dumbledore and he had to catch Snape. ... Somehow the two things were linked. ... He could reverse what had happened if he had them both together. ... Dumbledore could not have died. ...

In that situation, Harry feels "terror" over the idea of Snape having to kill Dumbledore, just as Snape feels "horror" over the idea of Harry having to die. They are two sides to the same coin, it seems to me.


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  #288  
Old February 22nd, 2011, 8:02 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

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Originally Posted by MinervasCat View Post
I think it is being suggested that it was the frustration and embarassment of being harassed, stupefied, gagged on suds, hung upside down and having your underwear removed in front of your schoolmates that may have caused Severus to lose his cool and say a really bad word.

I'm afraid that I would have to strongly disagree that Severus was responsible for yelling the word "Mudblood," and claim "midigating circumstances." In order to be "responsible" for something you have to be in full control of your faculties, and, IMO, Severus was not at the moment he yelled that word. I think it was a totally human response to be angry and strike out at a time like that. Unfortunately, it was Lily that he struck out at. I think you would have to agree, seeing the scene by the entrance to Gryffindor Common Room, that Severus was truly sorry and would never have done that on purpose, especially to Lily.

I don't excuse his use of the word, but, in times of stress we are not always able to pick the words that come out of our mouths. I would doubt that there is anyone who has not said something mean or hurtful in a moment of sheer and total frustration and then been wholely and truly sorry the moment the words crossed their lips.

It is times like those, like Ron telling Harry in DH that he didn't have to worry about his parents because they were dead, that truly tests a friendship. Harry forgave Ron over and over and over again, as did Hermione. But, that is for another thread.




I refer to the memories he gave Harry as he was dying. I truly believe it was his way of saying he was sorry, something that Severus Snape could have never brought himself to do for many years. I feel that his dying wish was for Harry to understand him and forgive him, which he obviously did, since he referred to him as "the bravest man I ever knew," and named his son after him.

?
OMG, I was starting to think I live in another planet, or I am really strange person who read a totally different texte in TPT.

Of course, calling a foul name to someone is not to be considered the same when you do it on cold blood, than when you do it while being humillated like that. And I don't buy the "you say the truth when you slip out" argument, I actually think you just shout the worst that is in your brain when you are that upset.

And her reaction, both by the lake and in front of the portrait, was not that of a close friend, it was that of a person who is more worried by her social status than by her friend's well being.

Her arguments, to convince Snape were a mix of "my friends don't like you" (so peer pressure here) and "you are joining the bad side" (so gang concern, but not properly rationalised so that he could understand, just parroting what was considered to be the correct side). None of her arguments was rational enough so that he would be convinced.

Also her attitude in the courtyard when they are arguing, she clearly owns the relationship in a way that it is very noticeable how she stops his arguments about Lupin being a werewolf, but she throws her own at him about how good the Marauders are because James saved him.

I really can't imagine Harry acting like that with Ron and Hermione, and of course Harry would have understood and forgiven. So by the time of their fifth year, Lily, despite being a very good person, was already self-consumed by her own popularity.
Normally when a relationship is broken it is not only one part's fault, but both, other wise a "perfect" Lily would be a perfect MarySue.

And of course, when Snape gave his memories to Harry, it meant he respect Harry as a brave person and fighter, otherwise he wouldn't have given. You don't try to make people you absolutely despise to understand you, and you don't search their comprehension and forgiveness.


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  #289  
Old February 22nd, 2011, 8:18 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

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Originally Posted by silver ink pot View Post
What makes these books so interesting to me is that Harry and Snape BOTH see what they want to see in the other. The prejudice goes both ways, imo, because misunderstanding each other is what keeps Snape's secret safe for the entire series.

From the first banquet in Book One onward, Harry believes that Snape is hurting him and trying to go against Dumbledore until it is proven to him (by both Quirrelmort and Dumbledore) that Snape was actually trying to save him.
I'm not sure what point you are trying to make about Snape's character, though. He does want to keep his secret about loving Lily Evans, yes, and indulge his hatred of James, and he doesn't seem to care what bad blood is generated in the process, in my opinion.

Quote:
Harry continues to blame Snape for the pain in his scar through OotP while everyone else tells him it has to do with Voldemort.
I'm not sure what you are talking about??

Quote:
Neither Snape nor Harry sees the other quite clearly, even though they almost reach some type of understanding several times.

In OotP, Snape sees Harry's memories of Dudley and the unhappy childhood, and in reverse, Harry sees Snape's memories of being bullied and feels pity for him. But the death of Sirius sweeps that all away, so Snape isn't the only one who is overly emotional about a loved-one's death, something else he and Harry have in common but they won't recognize it in the other.
We do learn that Harry feels pity for Snape, but I don't think we ever learn that Snape felt pity for Harry. There was no mutual understanding that was swept away because of Sirius's death. Snape had long before that broken off the Occlumency lessons, and had not shown any inclination to understand or form a positive relationship with Harry that I can see.

Quote:
Another time Harry almost understands Snape (without knowing it) is when Harry starts to read the Half-Blood Prince's Book and enjoys getting to know "the boy who had been so clever, who had helped him so much." Harry even imagines that the Prince is his father and asks Lupin about whether it could be true, which it isn't.
I tend to view this more as Harry creating an imaginary friend out of margin notes, and imbuing it with feelings that were never expressed by the writer of the book (like friendship and helpfulness). I don't see it as a real relationship between Harry and Snape. Harry had hoped that his father might have been the Prince, but that only showed how little in the way of actual personality could be found in the margin notes. I don't think it would be possible to reconstruct the true person from them, although they might highlight certain facets of that person's personality, like good at potions, favored hexes and jinxes, and as eventually discovered, used Dark Magic.

Quote:
But the point is made that Harry actually likes the genius of the Prince while hating Snape, even though Snape has both sides to his character all the while.

My main point is this: Snape dislikes one part of Harry's character that reminds him of James, while caring about the side that reminds him of Lily.

Harry likes the inner Prince side of Snape, while hating him for his outward personality.
The "Prince" personality is mostly an invention of Harry's based on sketchy notes in the margin of a book, imbued with characteristics Harry wanted to see in it, and ignoring warning flags that went against what he wanted to see, in my opinion. I don't think Snape really knows Harry that well, but not because Harry has been duping him about his motives or character. I just think Snape doesn't want to know Harry.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gertiekeddle
He never tried to see that there is a, in my view also very strong and unique, human besides being James' and Lily's son.
I think that's a very good point. Harry was his own person, and I would have liked Snape to view him as such.

I'd like to say though that I've never liked the idea that if Harry was like James it was okay for Snape to villify him, and if Harry was like Lily it wasn't okay to villify him. In my opinion it wasn't okay if Harry was like James (whether really like James, or how imagined Snape imagined James)-- that's still Snape's problem that he's taking out on an eleven year old he doesn't know. If Harry is like Lily and so Snape plays nice, then Snape still isn't being responsible for his behavior, he's still indulging his personal feelings when deciding how he will treat his students.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sekhmetlion View Post
OMG, I was starting to think I live in another planet, or I am really strange person who read a totally different texte in TPT.

Of course, calling a foul name to someone is not to be considered the same when you do it on cold blood, than when you do it while being humillated like that. And I don't buy the "you say the truth when you slip out" argument, I actually think you just shout the worst that is in your brain when you are that upset.
Lily noted that Severus called other Muggleborns that same thing.

Quote:
And her reaction, both by the lake and in front of the portrait, was not that of a close friend, it was that of a person who is more worried by her social status than by her friend's well being.
I don't think she considered herself Severus's close friend at that point, as he seems to have indicated that he thought she was dirt. Why would Severus still believe she was his best friend, when he thought so little of her and told her so to her face? Or when he was harrassing people with a birth status like hers because of their birth status? I think she was worried about her social status as a human being. She was in danger of being stripped of all rights or even killed because of the social ideals that Severus supported. I'm not sure why Severus would expect her to remain his close friend after all that, unless he had some sort of disconnect with reality.

Quote:
Her arguments, to convince Snape were a mix of "my friends don't like you" (so peer pressure here) and "you are joining the bad side" (so gang concern, but not properly rationalised so that he could understand, just parroting what was considered to be the correct side). None of her arguments was rational enough so that he would be convinced.
Why weren't these arguments rational to Severus, though? Or the one's about the Death Eaters? Or Dark Arts? What was it in Severus's personality that caused him to think it irrational for a Muggleborn to be worried about the Death Eaters or Voldemort or being called a racist slur? Or to believe that being against the Dark Arts was an irrational concern?

Quote:
Also her attitude in the courtyard when they are arguing, she clearly owns the relationship in a way that it is very noticeable how she stops his arguments about Lupin being a werewolf, but she throws her own at him about how good the Marauders are because James saved him.
I think Severus cared that Lupin was a werewolf, but he could percieve that Lily didn't care about that. Her question was about his obsession with the Marauders and stalking Lupin. I think Lily directly asks Severus questions that Severus doesn't want to answer. It appears to me that Severus is sneakily trying to control his relationship with Lily using methods she doesn't approve of-- namely targetting anyone he doesn't like and suspects might try to be friends with her.

Quote:
I really can't imagine Harry acting like that with Ron and Hermione, and of course Harry would have understood and forgiven. So by the time of their fifth year, Lily, despite being a very good person, was already self-consumed by her own popularity.
In your opinion, maybe. It's hardly a canon fact that Lily was consumed by popularity. I can't see how. In my opinion, she doesn't owe Severus friendship, and she's not indulging her popularity to want to break off a friendship with someone who doesn't respect her or her safety.

Quote:
Normally when a relationship is broken it is not only one part's fault, but both, other wise a "perfect" Lily would be a perfect MarySue.
Actually, I don't think that makes any sense. It is predicated on the assumption that Lily is perfect, except with the one imperfection that she would not continue to be Severus's friend. In my view, though, if she continued to be Severus's friend, she would not be perfect, she would be a delusional doormat (I don't see her as perfect, anyway, more like a normal human girl, but that's just me).


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Last edited by OldMotherCrow; February 22nd, 2011 at 8:54 pm.
  #290  
Old February 22nd, 2011, 9:18 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

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Originally Posted by OldMotherCrow View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by SIP
Harry continues to blame Snape for the pain in his scar through OotP while everyone else tells him it has to do with Voldemort.
I'm not sure what you are talking about??
As I wrote, in OotP Harry blames Snape for making his scar hurt during Occlumency, which is very much like the confusion in Book One.

It was actually Voldemort making his scar hurt in both cases whenever he had one of his visions. In OotP, nearly every single character including Hermione and Dumbledore tells Harry that Snape probably has nothing to do with the pain and that the point was to shut out Voldemort, and they urged him to keep trying. Besides all that, Harry's scar hurts when he is NOT with Snape too, but that logical point is ignored too. For instance, Snape has nothing to do with the pain when Mr. Weasley is attacked by the snake, which happens before Occlumency.

I was countering Gertie's argument that Snape only sees what he wants to see, when really Harry does the same thing. They are never really on the same page about anything until Snape dies.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OMC
We do learn that Harry feels pity for Snape, but I don't think we ever learn that Snape felt pity for Harry. There was no mutual understanding that was swept away because of Sirius's death. Snape had long before that broken off the Occlumency lessons, and had not shown any inclination to understand or form a positive relationship with Harry that I can see.
Yes, and Harry never apologized for Pensieve diving either, so again, they are equals in their non-understanding. I don't feel that it was one-sided with Snape being the only one who misunderstood.

However, someone told Dumbledore about the way the Dursleys treated Harry, especially the fact that Dudley was a bully, because it is only after the Occlumency fiasco that Dumbledore goes to see them in HBP and tells them off. I personally feel that is because of what Snape saw in Harry's memories. Up until then, Dumbledore always laughed or shrugged off whatever Harry said about his relatives. JMO


Quote:
Originally Posted by OMC
I tend to view this more as Harry creating an imaginary friend out of margin notes, and imbuing it with feelings that were never expressed by the writer of the book (like friendship and helpfulness). I don't see it as a real relationship between Harry and Snape.
The Prince "was" Snape. Snape was the Prince. He isn't imaginary, and unlike Tom Riddle in the Diary, Snape was still alive and still using those same potions notes to teach his classes. Harry already knew him without knowing he knew him. They already had a relationship - a bad one.

As far as being "real" ~ the Prince in the book was real for Harry, and as we know from King's Cross, it really doesn't matter if it's real or just inside Harry's head. Actually, for me, the most real parts of the books take place inside Harry's head, and since these are books about magic with peopel diving into books and other people's memories, then the Prince can be as real as anyone else.


Quote:
Originally Posted by OMC
Harry had hoped that his father might have been the Prince, but that only showed how little in the way of actual personality could be found in the margin notes. I don't think it would be possible to reconstruct the true person from them, although they might highlight certain facets of that person's personality, like good at potions, favored hexes and jinxes, and as eventually discovered, used Dark Magic.
If the Prince hadn't been real, he would have been static and stayed the same, but Harry does notice that the Prince changed in the book. He grew darker and more sinister, that's true, and if we accept that Snape was changing too (especially after he lost Lily as a friend) then we have to accept the good things about the Prince too.

The traits of Prince/Snape that were carried into adulthood were his snarky sense of humor ("just shove a bezoar down his throat"), his genius (Ron: "He was a genius, the Prince"), and his creativity in making up new spells (for good and bad - Levicorpus, but also the cure for Sectumsempra, whether we believe Snape invented Sectumsempra or not, which I dont personally believe).


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The "Prince" personality is mostly an invention of Harry's based on sketchy notes in the margin of a book, imbued with characteristics Harry wanted to see in it, and ignoring warning flags that went against what he wanted to see, in my opinion.
To my mind, the thing Harry absolutely didn't want to see was that Snape was the Prince. And indeed, he never saw it - Hermione had to prove it by showing him that Eilleen Snape's maiden name was Prince.

Why they never figured out that Potions Book = Snape is baffling to me.

What Harry really likes about the Prince is his "creativity," and I think it tells us alot about young Snape, so I don't see that as sketchy material.


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I'd like to say though that I've never liked the idea that if Harry was like James it was okay for Snape to villify him, and if Harry was like Lily it wasn't okay to villify him. In my opinion it wasn't okay if Harry was like James (whether really like James, or how imagined Snape imagined James)-- that's still Snape's problem that he's taking out on an eleven year old he doesn't know. If Harry is like Lily and so Snape plays nice, then Snape still isn't being responsible for his behavior, he's still indulging his personal feelings when deciding how he will treat his students.
Actually, I don't think Snape treated Harry much differently than he treated Hermione or the Weasley children, even while protecting them and keeping the secret of Grimmauld Place where they were all safe. JMO

I see no difference. JMO

Snape just didn't give Harry any special indulgences just because he was Lily's son. And really neither did anyone else except Sirius or Lupin or maybe Dumbledore, but only because he knew everything about Harry's future and that he was probably doomed.


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Last edited by silver ink pot; February 22nd, 2011 at 9:21 pm.
  #291  
Old February 22nd, 2011, 9:32 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

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Originally Posted by silver ink pot View Post
What makes these books so interesting to me is that Harry and Snape BOTH see what they want to see in the other. The prejudice goes both ways, imo, because misunderstanding each other is what keeps Snape's secret safe for the entire series.
I agree. It's partly why I find the Harry and Snape relationship interesting.


  #292  
Old February 22nd, 2011, 10:37 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

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Lily noted that Severus called other Muggleborns that same thing.
That was in the portrait scene, and by that time she had already taken her choice, she never discuss that calmly with Severus, she just throws it in his face when it is too late for him to counter it. I would have been different if she had said that in the courtyard.
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I don't think she considered herself Severus's close friend at that point, as he seems to have indicated that he thought she was dirt.
So you agree with me because she had given up on him before he called her mudblood.
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Why weren't these arguments rational to Severus, though? Or the one's about the Death Eaters? Or Dark Arts?
In the courtyard she didn't make any argument about DE or DA, she only states that what they are doing is evil, in a very dogmatic way, whithout explainin why it is evil and not a laugh as Snape thinks. To convince someone something is bad you must explain why it is bad, not just state that it is. It would take a blind follower to follow such a "command" or statement without judging, and Snape is not a blind follower, he considers himself her equal. There she seems to expect him to do as she says just because she says so, but without elaborating, meaning she consideres Severus a follower.

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I think Lily directly asks Severus questions that Severus doesn't want to answer. It appears to me that Severus is sneakily trying to control his relationship with Lily using methods she doesn't approve of-- namely targetting anyone he doesn't like and suspects might try to be friends with her.
Or rather questions he can't answer, because by keeping silence at the risk of making a fool of himself in front of Lily he is keeping Lupin's secret safe, so Severus is being noble here.
Maybe he tries to control or to be on the line subtly, but I see this as the natural reaction when he feels her slipping away from him. He is trying to convey he is a good person, not as bad as others paint him and others are not the saints everybody think they are.
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In your opinion, maybe. It's hardly a canon fact that Lily was consumed by popularity. I can't see how.
So a person parroting once and another what her friends think of her best friend, and not wanting to listen to any of his arguments against them is not friend-consumed?
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In my view, though, if she continued to be Severus's friend, she would not be perfect, she would be a delusional doormat
Or a forgiving and understanding person who accepts her friend's true sorrow and gives him an opportunity to straight his life just like Dumbledore did.
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The Prince "was" Snape. Snape was the Prince. He isn't imaginary, and unlike Tom Riddle in the Diary, Snape was still alive and still using those same potions notes to teach his classes. Harry already knew him without knowing he knew him. They already had a relationship - a bad one.
Totally agree with SIP the only difference between Snape and the Prince, is that the Prince didn't have all those defence mechanisms, and didn't know the reader was "Potter's brat". Through the book, Harry met the real Snape, the one without predjuices, his soul (because the book was meant for nobody else but the Prince himself) and his brilliance. And his suffering in a way. So yeah, they met each other without knowing.


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  #293  
Old February 22nd, 2011, 10:53 pm
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

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Originally Posted by OldMotherCrow View Post
I'm not sure what point you are trying to make about Snape's character, though. He does want to keep his secret about loving Lily Evans, yes, and indulge his hatred of James, and he doesn't seem to care what bad blood is generated in the process, in my opinion.
I don't interpret his reactions to things concerning James as "indulging his hatred." Severus had good reason to feel bitterness toward James and the Marauders. What is wrong is that he seems to misdirect that bitterness onto Harry, who has no idea about his father.

This was one of his main character flaws, but, even Dumbledore recognized that "some scars are too deep to heal."


Quote:
I'm not sure what you are talking about??
From the time that Harry first makes eye contact with Severus he feels a pain in his scar. As we find out later, it is because of Quirrell-mort and not Severus, but, first impressions are lasting and, IMO, Harry continued to relate that initial pain with Severus from then through the first book, and maybe further.

Harry goes into Severus' classroom already having been given negative information about him from Percy. Percy does not say he's nasty, unfair, or anything other than he "fancies" the DADA position and that he's head of Slytherin House (not a witch or wizard who's gone bad that didn't come from Slytherin).

As we see later, Harry also goes into Potions class unprepared, and Severus quizzes him about Potions information that must have been available in the textbooks as Hermione had already memorized it and was leaping out of her seat to answer the questions. Harry even admitted he had not studied his books that much prior to school starting.

No, it was not fair to expect him to have memorized every potion in the book, but, IMO, since he had the books, it was not unfair to expect him to know a bit of something going into his new classes.

It has been suggested, also, that, based on Harry's father's enjoying fame and hero-worship, that Harry might have been the same and Severus might have been taking the wind from his sails, so to speak. That may be so, or, it might have been that Severus was projecting his dislike for James onto Harry at that time and grilling him to embarass him. But, if Harry had been prepared for the class (he'd had the books for over a month), neither would have worked.

Harry continues, throughout the series, to refer to Severus as "Snape," and not Professor Snape. He acts extremely disrespectful in Severus' classes, including the first one where Severus is covering for Lupin.

These are some examples that the lack of trying to understand each other was two-sided, and not just Severus not wanting to understand Harry. Harry, IMO, continued to relate the pain in his scar, during that first Great Feast, with Severus much the same as Severus continued to relate the pain of humiliation and frustration at the hands of James with Harry.

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We do learn that Harry feels pity for Snape, but I don't think we ever learn that Snape felt pity for Harry. There was no mutual understanding that was swept away because of Sirius's death. Snape had long before that broken off the Occlumency lessons, and had not shown any inclination to understand or form a positive relationship with Harry that I can see.
Even if he'd wanted to, by that time he was reporting to Voldemort regularly and couldn't risk having any positive emotions about Harry.

We do see, in the memory where Severus is told Harry must die, that he shows more than pity, he shows anger and disbelief at Dumbledore for raising Harry for "slaughter." This, to me, was the first indication that Severus' feelings toward Harry were changing and he was seeing him as an individual. He refers to him as "the boy," rather than Lily or James' son, or "Potter's son," or any of the other terms he'd used before.

Severus broke off the Occlumency lessons, IMO, for legitimate reasons: First, Harry had invaded the privacy of the Pensieve; Second, Harry was really not trying to learn Occlumency. His hate for Severus was more than he could overcome. And, that was what Severus kept trying to get across to him -- that he had to learn to control those emotions or Voldemort would use them against him...which he did, and which resulted in Sirius' death.

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I tend to view this more as Harry creating an imaginary friend out of margin notes, and imbuing it with feelings that were never expressed by the writer of the book (like friendship and helpfulness). I don't see it as a real relationship between Harry and Snape. Harry had hoped that his father might have been the Prince, but that only showed how little in the way of actual personality could be found in the margin notes. I don't think it would be possible to reconstruct the true person from them, although they might highlight certain facets of that person's personality, like good at potions, favored hexes and jinxes, and as eventually discovered, used Dark Magic.
That is one way to look at it.


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The "Prince" personality is mostly an invention of Harry's based on sketchy notes in the margin of a book, imbued with characteristics Harry wanted to see in it, and ignoring warning flags that went against what he wanted to see, in my opinion. I don't think Snape really knows Harry that well, but not because Harry has been duping him about his motives or character. I just think Snape doesn't want to know Harry.
I think you're right, at first. But, again, even if Severus did want to get to know Harry later on, he could not have done so after GoF because the risk of letting any feelings slip through under Voldemort's Legilimency was too great.


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I think that's a very good point. Harry was his own person, and I would have liked Snape to view him as such.
Neither of them went very far to understand the other, which was a shame because they had a lot in common.

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I'd like to say though that I've never liked the idea that if Harry was like James it was okay for Snape to villify him, and if Harry was like Lily it wasn't okay to villify him. In my opinion it wasn't okay if Harry was like James (whether really like James, or how imagined Snape imagined James)-- that's still Snape's problem that he's taking out on an eleven year old he doesn't know. If Harry is like Lily and so Snape plays nice, then Snape still isn't being responsible for his behavior, he's still indulging his personal feelings when deciding how he will treat his students.
You're right. It was never right for Severus to villify Harry because of his physical resemblence to James. It wouldn't have been any better to like him because he was like Lily. Severus should have seen Harry as an individual, spearate from his parents.

As far as how he "imagined" James. I think SWM speaks for itself.

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Lily noted that Severus called other Muggleborns that same thing.
But, we never see this in canon, just Lily's word for it. IMO, if Severus had been that far gone into Dark Arts and the DE world it would have been mentioned specifically, and also, I think Lily would have distanced herself from him much earlier than she did. But, she still reassures him that they are best friends.

Lily doen't take heed of Severus' warnings about Lupin anymore than Severus takes heed of Lily's warnings about Mulciber and Avery. It is possible that they thought they "knew" their housemates and were safe with them.


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I don't think she considered herself Severus's close friend at that point, as he seems to have indicated that he thought she was dirt. Why would Severus still believe she was his best friend, when he thought so little of her and told her so to her face? Or when he was harrassing people with a birth status like hers because of their birth status? I think she was worried about her social status as a human being. She was in danger of being stripped of all rights or even killed because of the social ideals that Severus supported. I'm not sure why Severus would expect her to remain his close friend after all that, unless he had some sort of disconnect with reality.
Severus did not make the comment to Lily, but to James when taunted about Lily's coming to his aid.

I still do not agree that his outcry during SWM was a "conscious act." I feel that most people, in that stressful a situation, would cry out in pain and humiliation. And, as I said previously, it is unfortunate, but we are not always in control of what he cry out.

I used Ron's statement to Harry about his parents as an example. While it was not "racist," it was an extremely hurtful thing to say, especially since Lily's sacrificed her life to save Harry. I don't think Ron, in his normal frame of mind, would have said that to Harry. But, under the pressures of the quest for the Horcruxes and the things that were still going on back home, Ron cracked. It's human.

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Why weren't these arguments rational to Severus, though? Or the one's about the Death Eaters? Or Dark Arts? What was it in Severus's personality that caused him to think it irrational for a Muggleborn to be worried about the Death Eaters or Voldemort or being called a racist slur? Or to believe that being against the Dark Arts was an irrational concern?
For the same reason his warnings about the Marauders and Lupin were not rational to Lily. These were their Housemates, and, I have a feeling each thought they knew their own Housemates better than the other knew them. Each may have felt safe with them, although there was definite danger in both instances. Each chose their loyalty to their House over the other's warnings.

Being against the Dark Arts wasn't irrational, but neither was being concerned about the presence of a werewolf in the school. As far as Lily being concerned about Severus, until SWM, it is indicated that he did not consider Lily anything but another magical being. He didn't see her as Muggle-born because she had "loads of magic." He tries to express to her that he didn't really consider her a "Mudblood," and, even though he seems to get this point across, becaus he singles her out from other Muggle-borns, she is even more angry with him.

I don't see either of them coming out of that whole incident spotless.

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I think Severus cared that Lupin was a werewolf, but he could percieve that Lily didn't care about that. Her question was about his obsession with the Marauders and stalking Lupin. I think Lily directly asks Severus questions that Severus doesn't want to answer. It appears to me that Severus is sneakily trying to control his relationship with Lily using methods she doesn't approve of-- namely targetting anyone he doesn't like and suspects might try to be friends with her.
Lily asks Severus questions which he tries to answer. From everything we're shown, he is always awkward and nervous around her unless he is talking about Hogwarts and magic. Otherwise he seems to stammer and stutter a lot, especially when she is admonishing him about something. IMO, he wasn't able to verbalize his thoughts, and, she wasn't giving him much time to do so as she was raking him over the coals.


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In your opinion, maybe. It's hardly a canon fact that Lily was consumed by popularity. I can't see how. In my opinion, she doesn't owe Severus friendship, and she's not indulging her popularity to want to break off a friendship with someone who doesn't respect her or her safety.
I don't think she was "consumed" by it, but, like most teenage girls, she was concerned about it. She makes it very clear to Severus that he is a huge impediment to her social standing when she says, "None of my friends can understand why I even talk to you." She has, it seems, already eliminated him from this group.


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Actually, I don't think that makes any sense. It is predicated on the assumption that Lily is perfect, except with the one imperfection that she would not continue to be Severus's friend. In my view, though, if she continued to be Severus's friend, she would not be perfect, she would be a delusional doormat (I don't see her as perfect, anyway, more like a normal human girl, but that's just me).
Lily, like all of the other character in the series, was far from perfect. I have always interpreted her "friendship" with Severus to be based on her curiosity about the Wizarding World and not on actually liking him. That, to me, is why she is so quick to jump on him everytime something goes wrong (the limb falling on Petunia, peeking at the letter from Hogwarts, her embarassment with her friends about Severus, Severus' lack of gratitude for James saving his life, etc.). I've never thought Lily was perfect.


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  #294  
Old February 23rd, 2011, 1:13 am
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

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Originally Posted by MinervasCat View Post
Lily, like all of the other character in the series, was far from perfect. I have always interpreted her "friendship" with Severus to be based on her curiosity about the Wizarding World and not on actually liking him. That, to me, is why she is so quick to jump on him everytime something goes wrong (the limb falling on Petunia, peeking at the letter from Hogwarts, her embarassment with her friends about Severus, Severus' lack of gratitude for James saving his life, etc.). I've never thought Lily was perfect.
Bold mine. I wouldn't go as far as saying Lily was only interested in Snape out of curiosity for magical world, because then, she would have ditched him middle first year or middle second year, as soon as she settled herself in the WW. However I do think there is a whole part of Snape she didn't like from the begining: the mean part of him, she doesn't like it and she tries to erradicate it, even if she has part in this mean behaviour (because she helped in peeking in Petunia's letter), later on, this behaviour seemed to be increased. But, while not liking meanness isn't bad, it is a defect the fact that she never tried to understand Severus himself, she just accepted what she saw, but never tried to put herelf in his shoes. So when the time came she didn't understand and didn't try to, because he was a social burden to her. As Minerva'sCat said, teenange girls are often very concerned about their social status, and Lily was no exception.
I do think that, had their frienship survived SWM, or had SWM never existed, both would have matured, and seen past those differences. After all, JKR said she could have felt love for Severus hadn't he taken that path in life.
So her friendship for him must have been true, in that point I disagree with MinCat.


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  #295  
Old February 23rd, 2011, 1:35 am
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

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Originally Posted by KendraD View Post
If they would have just let him be after taking the O.W.L., Lily never would have had to come to his defense probably making fifteen year old Severus embarrassed that a girl, the girl that he liked coming to his rescue causing him to retaliate with the unforgivable word that was the last straw.
So, others are responsible for Snape letting his prejudices be heard? Personally, I am very uncomfortable with the implications of this - it seems to basically be "don't upset Snape or make him angry or he will have to throw disgusting racial epithets at others". It's taking responsibility away from the person who actually used the racist word.

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Originally Posted by MinervasCat View Post
I think it is being suggested that it was the frustration and embarassment of being harassed, stupefied, gagged on suds, hung upside down and having your underwear removed in front of your schoolmates that may have caused Severus to lose his cool and say a really bad word.
By the time Snape threw that racist epithet at Lily, he had been let down on the ground. One of the Marauders told him he was lucky Lily was there to help him. It was at that point, and not when he was in the air that he called his best friend a "filthy little Mudblood".

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It is times like those, like Ron telling Harry in DH that he didn't have to worry about his parents because they were dead, that truly tests a friendship. Harry forgave Ron over and over and over again, as did Hermione. But, that is for another thread.
That was only in the movie. In the book, in canon, Harry yells that his parents are dead, Ron yells back that his could be going the same way.

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No one, that I've seen, has tried to totally excuse Severus' actions, either the day of SWM, or as far as his being a DE and joining up with Voldemort. What we are trying to do is to go in depth and maybe understand why. There is a huge difference in "understanding" and "condoning."
IMO, blaming Snape's use of a bigoted slur on others amounts to excusing his actions. If his actions are someone else's fault, that is not holding Snape accountable for his behaviour.

Quote:
Originally Posted by boushh View Post
I don't think that Snape being involved in Harry's life "for Lily" is a bad thing. Aren't Lupin and Sirius interested in Harry because of James? Before they meet Harry and spend time with him they don't really know him. So it isn't like they know Harry as a person and that's why they care about what happens to him. They care out of loyalty to their friend.
IMO, there is a difference, in that Sirius and Lupin did not begrudge James' choice of partner. They did not resent and despise one of Harry's parents.


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Originally Posted by silver ink pot View Post
What makes these books so interesting to me is that Harry and Snape BOTH see what they want to see in the other. The prejudice goes both ways, imo, because misunderstanding each other is what keeps Snape's secret safe for the entire series.
I think they do misunderstand each other, but honestly, I expect better behaviour from an adult than from an eleven year old child. Harry did not set off for Hogwarts determined to hate any of his teachers. Snape saw what he wanted to see, as Dumbledore told him.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sekhmetlion View Post
And her reaction, both by the lake and in front of the portrait, was not that of a close friend, it was that of a person who is more worried by her social status than by her friend's well being.
Her social status?! Lily stood by Snape for five years at Hogwarts. Despite his involvement with people who considered her subhuman. Of course Lily's friends were going to be concerned about that -she was hanging out with a boy whose other friends were budding DEs. A decent friend, IMO, cares if you're getting into a bad situation. A friend does not support you if you're headed for trouble (a criminal organisation, in this instance) -they try to point you in the right direction

Quote:
Originally Posted by OldMotherCrow View Post
Harry had hoped that his father might have been the Prince, but that only showed how little in the way of actual personality could be found in the margin notes.
Yeah, Harry wonders if James was the Prince. He doesn't wonder if some mysterious other man was his father.

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I'd like to say though that I've never liked the idea that if Harry was like James it was okay for Snape to villify him, and if Harry was like Lily it wasn't okay to villify him. In my opinion it wasn't okay if Harry was like James (whether really like James, or how imagined Snape imagined James)-- that's still Snape's problem that he's taking out on an eleven year old he doesn't know. If Harry is like Lily and so Snape plays nice, then Snape still isn't being responsible for his behavior, he's still indulging his personal feelings when deciding how he will treat his students.
I think that's a good point. It's not mature or fair or decent, IMO, to decide whether to treat a child fairly depending on who he reminds one of. I think this is suggested when the argument is made that Snape should have seen Lily's qualities in Harry. No matter who Harry was like, he was an eleven year old child thrown into the magical world when he first sat in Snape's class.

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Why weren't these arguments rational to Severus, though? Or the one's about the Death Eaters? Or Dark Arts? What was it in Severus's personality that caused him to think it irrational for a Muggleborn to be worried about the Death Eaters or Voldemort or being called a racist slur? Or to believe that being against the Dark Arts was an irrational concern?
Good questions. Why would Snape need a detailed argument on why the DEs were bad news? An explanation on why Lily was opposed to oppression and subjugation of people of her birth??

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Originally Posted by silver ink pot View Post
However, someone told Dumbledore about the way the Dursleys treated Harry, especially the fact that Dudley was a bully, because it is only after the Occlumency fiasco that Dumbledore goes to see them in HBP and tells them off. I personally feel that is because of what Snape saw in Harry's memories. Up until then, Dumbledore always laughed or shrugged off whatever Harry said about his relatives. JMO
There is no canon for that idea. It's just as possible that the Order reacted to the cat-flap on Harry's bedroom door. There's no canon for either.

Also, can you tell me where in canon does Dumbledore laugh off what Harry says about the Dursleys? Or where Harry talks to Dumbledore about the Dursleys for that matter?


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Originally Posted by sekhmetlion View Post
To convince someone something is bad you must explain why it is bad, not just state that it is. It would take a blind follower to follow such a "command" or statement without judging, and Snape is not a blind follower, he considers himself her equal. There she seems to expect him to do as she says just because she says so, but without elaborating, meaning she consideres Severus a follower.
If Snape is not a blind follower, it leads logically, IMO, to the idea that he believed in what the DEs were doing, he didn't just join because his buddies Mulciber and Avery were joining.

"Filthy little Mudbloods like her" suggests that Snape did not consider Lily his equal. "Mudblood" means the furthest thing from equal possible.

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Originally Posted by MinervasCat View Post
He tries to express to her that he didn't really consider her a "Mudblood," and, even though he seems to get this point across, becaus he singles her out from other Muggle-borns, she is even more angry with him.
Again, I'm wondering why Lily should be glad that she was an exception. It would be demeaning, IMO. Making Lily an exception is telling her that she only has value as a human being because she matters to Snape, and that the other "filthy little Mudbloods" are inferior life forms because they don't matter to him.


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  #296  
Old February 23rd, 2011, 1:46 am
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

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Originally Posted by FurryDice
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Originally Posted by KendraD
If they would have just let him be after taking the O.W.L., Lily never would have had to come to his defense probably making fifteen year old Severus embarrassed that a girl, the girl that he liked coming to his rescue causing him to retaliate with the unforgivable word that was the last straw.
So, others are responsible for Snape letting his prejudices be heard? Personally, I am very uncomfortable with the implications of this - it seems to basically be "don't upset Snape or make him angry or he will have to throw disgusting racial epithets at others". It's taking responsibility away from the person who actually used the racist word.
I don't think Kendra meant that Snape bore no responsibility, only that it wasn't his fault if people jumped him right after the OWL test. He wasn't responsible for everyone's actions at that moment, or for his predicament.

Every character was responsible for their own actions in that scene, not just Snape, which is only fair if we hold him to that standard in my opinion. I think that's what she meant. Of course, Snape is the only one who said that word, but I think it's valid to look at his state of mind at that moment (wasn't he still hanging upside down? or was he merely petrified?) and of course the fact that he was sorry immediately (he seemed to give up fighting back when Lily walked away) and apologized later.


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  #297  
Old February 23rd, 2011, 1:55 am
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

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Originally Posted by silver ink pot View Post
I don't think Kendra meant that Snape bore no responsibility, only that it wasn't his fault if people jumped him right after the OWL test. He wasn't responsible for everyone's actions at that moment, or for his predicament.

Every character was responsible for their own actions in that scene, not just Snape, which is only fair if we hold him to that standard in my opinion. I think that's what she meant. Of course, Snape is the only one who said that word, but I think it's valid to look at his state of mind at that moment (wasn't he still hanging upside down? or was he merely petrified?) and of course the fact that he was sorry immediately (he seemed to give up fighting back when Lily walked away) and apologized later.
I did not say that Snape was responsible for other peoples' actions. What I said was that Snape is responsible for Snape's actions. Other people are not responsible for Snape throwing his bigotry at Lily. Nobody forced him to use a racist insult, nobody Imperiused him. I am very uncomfortable with the argument that Snape threw a disgusting epithet at Lily because "someone else made him angry/upset". It has very disturbing implications IMO.


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  #298  
Old February 23rd, 2011, 4:08 am
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

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Originally Posted by silver ink pot View Post
As I wrote, in OotP Harry blames Snape for making his scar hurt during Occlumency, which is very much like the confusion in Book One.
Ahha! I read those two sentences of yours together, and it sounded to me like you were saying that Harry delusionally blamed Snape for his scar pain from PS to OotP, rather than Voldemort who he knew full well was causing it . Thanks for clearing that up.

I think Harry was correct in OotP that the Occlumency lessons with Snape were making him more vulnerable to Voldemort's intrusions, so I don't think Harry was wrong.

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I was countering Gertie's argument that Snape only sees what he wants to see, when really Harry does the same thing. They are never really on the same page about anything until Snape dies.
]

I'm not sure how that counters Gertiekeddle's argument? What Harry is possibly thinking or doing doesn't cancel out what Snape is thinking and doing.

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However, someone told Dumbledore about the way the Dursleys treated Harry, especially the fact that Dudley was a bully, because it is only after the Occlumency fiasco that Dumbledore goes to see them in HBP and tells them off. I personally feel that is because of what Snape saw in Harry's memories. Up until then, Dumbledore always laughed or shrugged off whatever Harry said about his relatives. JMO
It is possible but not known what Snape reported to Dumbledore. In any case, I don't think we learn anything about Snape's feelings on the matter. I can't conclude from that that Snape cared one way or the other.

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The Prince "was" Snape. Snape was the Prince. He isn't imaginary, and unlike Tom Riddle in the Diary, Snape was still alive and still using those same potions notes to teach his classes. Harry already knew him without knowing he knew him. They already had a relationship - a bad one.
Yes, Harry and Snape had a bad relationship. Harry's "relationship" with the book was not one that Snape participated in, though. The Potions book was Snape's, he was the "Half-Blood Prince" and he wrote in it, and certain things could be gleaned about his personality from the notes. But the persona of the Prince as created by Harry was still something created by Harry based on margin notes and scribbled spells. Personally I think Harry assigned qualities to his "friend" that weren't warranted by the limited text, and set the perameters of the "friendship" based on what he wanted. None of that was Snape's fault or doing. He didn't participate or encourage it.

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Originally Posted by sekhmetlion View Post
That was in the portrait scene, and by that time she had already taken her choice, she never discuss that calmly with Severus, she just throws it in his face when it is too late for him to counter it. I would have been different if she had said that in the courtyard.
Why? Severus knows whether or not he has been calling Muggleborns racial slurs before he threw the same at Lily. I don't think he needs Lily to inform him what he has been doing. I think there is a problem with Severus if he thinks what he does should only be edited if Lily finds out and brings it to his attention that she knows.

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So you agree with me because she had given up on him before he called her mudblood.
No. But I do think that the relationship had become increasingly strained over the past year, to the point that the racial slur was the final straw.

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In the courtyard she didn't make any argument about DE or DA, she only states that what they are doing is evil, in a very dogmatic way, whithout explainin why it is evil and not a laugh as Snape thinks. To convince someone something is bad you must explain why it is bad, not just state that it is. It would take a blind follower to follow such a "command" or statement without judging, and Snape is not a blind follower, he considers himself her equal. There she seems to expect him to do as she says just because she says so, but without elaborating, meaning she consideres Severus a follower.
I'm not following that. Severus seems to have made the judgment that using the Dark Arts on people was funny, without explaining why. Lily actually asks Severus to explain the things he does that she can't understand, but he doesn't. I don't think Severus cared what Lily thought or wanted, as long as he could do what he wished. I see absolutely nothing to suggest that Severus thought that he was Lily's follower.

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Or rather questions he can't answer, because by keeping silence at the risk of making a fool of himself in front of Lily he is keeping Lupin's secret safe, so Severus is being noble here.
The werewolf thing seems to already be something that Severus and Lily discussed. She knows his theory, but doesn't seem that intersted in it. It was other things that Severus doesn't wixh to discuss that I was thinking of.

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Maybe he tries to control or to be on the line subtly, but I see this as the natural reaction when he feels her slipping away from him. He is trying to convey he is a good person, not as bad as others paint him and others are not the saints everybody think they are.
Severus doesn't say anything about not being as bad as others paint him, so I don't think that is his motivation at all. I don't know that any one but Severus was painting himself as bad in Lily's eyes. I think Severus states his motive plainly, that he feared that James liked Lily and was afraid she might see James in a good light. I don't think Lily was someone who liked to be controled, though. In fact, I think we see her bristle when Severus tries to tell her what he will or will not allow her to do. It might have felt natural for Severus to try to control her, but that doesn't mean she has to like it or accept it or arrange her life to cater to his desires.

Quote:
Originally Posted by FurryDice View Post
Her social status?! Lily stood by Snape for five years at Hogwarts. Despite his involvement with people who considered her subhuman. Of course Lily's friends were going to be concerned about that -she was hanging out with a boy whose other friends were budding DEs. A decent friend, IMO, cares if you're getting into a bad situation. A friend does not support you if you're headed for trouble (a criminal organisation, in this instance) -they try to point you in the right direction
I agree.

I do wonder why Snape (this being the Snape thread, despite all sorts of aspersions assigned here to Lily's character) wasn't concerned about hanging out with budding Death Eaters. Why did he not care about the threat to someone he kept insisting was his best friend? He seems to recognize that Lily is Muggleborn-- he even throws it in her face in SWM. He seems to be pushing Lily away, trying to get rid of her, perhaps subconsciously. I mean, he seems to consciously want her, and plan a lot of the stuff he gets up to because he wants her (at least the werewolf incident was planned by him with her in mind, going by what he said) Maybe she was an impediment to his standing in his gang, though.

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Again, I'm wondering why Lily should be glad that she was an exception. It would be demeaning, IMO. Making Lily an exception is telling her that she only has value as a human being because she matters to Snape, and that the other "filthy little Mudbloods" are inferior life forms because they don't matter to him.
I think that is in keeping with how Snape treated Lily-- in my opinion he treeated her like she only had value because Severus Snape decided she had value. And I also find it in keeping with how Snape treated Lily's son. Severus may have thought that that should have been sufficient for her, and was then surprised that she objected to what she saw as his general bigotry towards all people of her birth. I wonder if there was ever a point that Snape saw Lily as someone having a value all her own?


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  #299  
Old February 23rd, 2011, 7:57 am
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

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Originally Posted by MinervasCat View Post
But, we never see this in canon, just Lily's word for it.
What reason would she have to lie? And more importantly, is her statement disproved in the text? As far as I am aware her point stands.

I wonder, with Lily under so much criticism for being an inadequate friend, what did Snape do for their friendship? And I'm not referring to his admirable actions after Lily called it quits. While they were friends he didn't seem to try to put himself in her position. He didn't seem to take her justified fears seriously. This is speculative, but do you think he defended her when his Slytherin friends insulted Muggle-borns?


  #300  
Old February 23rd, 2011, 8:19 am
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Re: Severus Snape: Character Analysis Reboot v.4

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Originally Posted by ReelBigFish View Post
Are you suggesting that James and Sirius are responsible for Snapes actions and behaviour?? If so I could not disagree more they had nothing to do with him and Lily not being friends that was down to Snape and his behaviour. Lily tried to get him away from the Dark Arts and Snape chose not to listen to her before SWM. It was Snape alone who was responsible for his choices. He did not lose Lily to anyone - he drove her away. She did not date James for a long time after SWM. Snape was already on the wrong path and it was not up to Lily to save him.

I truly think Snape hated Harry and never cared about him at all. Snape did not IMP pretend to hate Harry he genuinely hated Harry for what he represented - Lilys true love for James. I also do not believe he was at all interested in befriending Harry because he could not see past the external and see Harry for a person not just the mirror image of James.

At the end of the day Snape made a conscious decision of his own volition to become a Death Eater and it is not anyone elses fault at all.
Quote:
Originally Posted by MinervasCat
I think it is being suggested that it was the frustration and embarassment of being harassed, stupefied, gagged on suds, hung upside down and having your underwear removed in front of your schoolmates that may have caused Severus to lose his cool and say a really bad word.
^That is what I meant.

No, I did not mean that Snape was a mere victim of circumstances and not responsible for his own actions. He could not forget the ripple effect caused by being bullied by James and co. (although there were other causes and he chose to act and react to things the way that he did).

My theory is that Sirius and Lupin were reminders of the course of events that ended up leading to Lily's murder, for which he feels responsible. He may have felt just as bad for James dying and Harry being orphaned.Being around Sirius, Lupin, and Harry, because he looked and acted like his father, brought up guilt and shame in Snape. He would mask this with anger because he did not want anyone to know his full story because he was too ashamed and it would blow his cover. (Yes, he could have used occlumecy, but it was probably easier to tap into the bitterness he still had from his school days.)


 
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