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Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis



 
 
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  #21  
Old November 2nd, 2006, 7:17 am
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by silver ink pot View Post
I see Dolores as necessary for the plot to advance, but she's also a symbol of someone doing things in an evil way that helps Voldemort to grow stronger.
This is an very important point for me. JK showed how much these people can support evilness, although they're lying to theirselves and thinking they're still defending the gouvernment. That's in my opinion the main function Umbrigde had to do, so I'm not sure, if she really will return and play a bigger part in 7. (I know she will be there, because JK said so, but I doubt she will be shown in a different way).


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  #22  
Old November 2nd, 2006, 7:53 am
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

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(I know she will be there, because JK said so, but I doubt she will be shown in a different way).
I agree - I think she will provide a little light relief in what is likely to be quite a dark book. I'm looking forward to seing her get her comeuppance.


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  #23  
Old November 2nd, 2006, 7:57 am
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by Mundungus Fletc View Post
I agree - I think she will provide a little light relief in what is likely to be quite a dark book. I'm looking forward to seing her get her comeuppance.
Of course. That was excactly the reason, why JK wanted to put her in again, if I remember right - hehe, at least that was what she said.


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  #24  
Old November 2nd, 2006, 3:01 pm
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

Umbridge is every kind of sick.

She never even tried to discover the truth, before aligning herself with her boss AND sent two evil, soul-sucking creatures into a muggle-populated area after a child she believed (without ever having met him) was... *gasp* horrors!... lying.

What if Harry had merely been insane from trauma, as many others believed?

Anyway, I think she's still at the Ministry because of she has some kind of connections or blackmail power -- whatever got her in in the first place. It certainly wasn't competence.


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  #25  
Old November 2nd, 2006, 10:44 pm
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

I agree that she must have wiggled her way into the ministry some way other than being right for the job. She is sweetly poisonous. I also agree with whoever said that she is still there because the ministry doesn't want to face the embarassment of letting her go, especially with all they have suffered from Voldemort showing up under Fudge's nose. I have said this somewhere before, but I think it would be hilarious if the ministry assigned Umbridge the responsibility of getting Harry to be their poster boy. Harry could have some fun with than one.


  #26  
Old November 3rd, 2006, 4:05 pm
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

Two things about Umbridge before I start:

She is indeed one of the best things that has ever happened to Hogwarts

and

She's the woman we love to hate!

1) Jo herself describes Umbridge as evil. How does Dolores rate against the series villain, Lord Voldemort? When Harry was told the world wasn't divided between good people and Death Eaters, did that rule her out as a DE? Do you think her actions support Voldemort even if she isn't a DE?

I agree with everyone who said Umbridge is not as evil as Voldemort. The world really isn't divided between good and DEs. Even in the Muggle world it is not the good people and the terrorists. Umbridge definitely falls in between - she is not a good person, for obvious reasons, and there's no canon to support or even hint that she is a Death Eater. She's like Fudge, both didn't want to believe You-Know-Who was back and did their best to stop the ones who believed he was - especially Harry.

2) Umbridge did her share of driving the plot in OotP, the trio would never have formed Dumbledore's Army without her influence, for instance. Did her tenure at Hogwarts--as DADA professor, High Inquisitor and Headmistress--produce other effects favorable to Harry and company? How do you feel about the handling of her "duties"?
Quote:
Originally Posted by RemusLupinFan
In the long run I do think that Umbridge’s presence at Hogwarts served to help Harry and company in several ways. For one thing, it showed the students that they could unite, and in unity they would be stronger than if they stood alone.
Exactly why I think she is one of the best things that has ever happened to Hogwarts. Unity was needed and she successfully did it, without her own knowledge. If it weren't for the D.A., Neville wouldn't have tried to improve his skills, Luna would have been lonely, and what not.

3) How is it that Dolores is still employed at the Ministry? Is she still 'loyal' to Fudge or has her loyalty shifted to Minister Scrimgeour? Is she Scrimgeour's Senior Undersecretary or does she now have another title/job?
As I said before, Umbridge and Fudge think similarly. Fudge probably understood her situation, since he was in the same one himself, and understood she didn't mean any harm. Fudge must have persuaded Scrimgeour somehow.


4) How do you think Jo will give Umbridge her due in Book 7? What personality traits or actions could lead to her being involved in the plot?
I have no clue but I can say, the D.A. won't like her.


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  #27  
Old November 4th, 2006, 1:49 pm
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by mugglesrock View Post
Unity was needed and she successfully did it, without her own knowledge.
I disagree that house unity was achieved. There were no Slytherins in Dumbledore's Army. Umbridge prevented unity by making a bunch of Slytherins into the Inquisitorial Squad, something opposed to D's Army. Yes, 3 houses came together even while a Hufflepuff questioned Harry's every move in the early stages and a Ravenclaw betrayed the group. And only one non-Gryffindor answered the call of the coin in HBP, so it doesn't look like the unity lasted any appreciable length of time. It does show that 3/4 of them could unite, but also that any such alliance is likely to be temporary. Just mho, of course.


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Old November 4th, 2006, 2:18 pm
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

I have to agree with Nicole. Umbridge was a divider, not a uniter. There can be no unity when she is pitting student against student. She made that clear from her first day of classes, when she invited them to come to her office outside class hours to fink on each other.


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  #29  
Old November 4th, 2006, 5:19 pm
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

Slytherins are never going to be good friends with Gryffindors, and the other Houses for that matter. She might have caused divisions --I'm not denying that-- but she brought the teachers and the 3 Houses together (Slytherin isn't counted). I guess I should have been more specific.

The D.A. was clearly influenced by her cruel ways of teaching and there were students from all three Houses in the D.A. Even if Umbridge created a barrier between the Slytherins and the other Houses, at least she brought 25 people together. (Make that 24, since Marietta betrayed the D.A. later on) 24 people who, otherwise, wouldn't be such good friends. Neville and Luna wouldn't be such good friends with the trio if it weren't for the D.A., in my opinion.

But then again, that's how I see it.


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  #30  
Old November 5th, 2006, 10:22 pm
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

Yes, the D.A. never would have happened without Umbridge, but I think her list of good deeds stops there. Also, I am not sure that there was any uniting going on with the teachers. They all hated Umbridge, but I don't see where any of them really came together. Maybe McGonagall felt sorry for Trelawney, but that didn't change the way she felt about her.


  #31  
Old November 5th, 2006, 11:59 pm
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by PotterPig View Post
Yes, the D.A. never would have happened without Umbridge, but I think her list of good deeds stops there. Also, I am not sure that there was any uniting going on with the teachers. They all hated Umbridge, but I don't see where any of them really came together. Maybe McGonagall felt sorry for Trelawney, but that didn't change the way she felt about her.
I need to make this clear: I am not pro-Umbridge. I hate her, and I'd give anything to *cough*kick*cough* her for the pain she gave to Harry. But I truly believe Umbridge's entrance in OotP was a benefit for the students in Hogwarts, along with the teachers. It opened the students' eyes, who, until now, had no idea of how wrong the Ministry could be. Umbridge helped them --unwillingly, of course-- see the real truth and what's really waiting for them "out there." Hufflepuffs, Ravenclaws, and even Gryffindors till now though Harry and Dumbledore were nutters, because they believed Voldemort was back. But Umbridge's arrival led to numerous positive things:
  • The D.A. which brought students together fighting for justice.
  • Harry's Quibbler Interview (thanks to Luna) which spoke the truth.
  • The Educational Decrees and my favorite one is the one where Umbridge bans the Quibblers because by doing that she ensured every student read them, hence, leading to the growth in Harry-DD believers.
  • As you pointed out, McGonagall felt sorry for Trelawny. No matter how much she dislikes Divination, I'd call it a bit of unity on the teachers' part.
  • The most important one is that students were exposed to something outside Hogwarts --which rarely happened in the earlier books-- and they reall got to see even the Ministry was not correct in their ways.


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  #32  
Old November 7th, 2006, 3:26 am
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

Umbridge is different from Fudge though. Both idiotically refused to accept the truth, but he never sank to the level of torture and cruelty.

And if he'd been that type, she wouldn't have any motive for concealing her Dementor attack from him, she would have bragged and gotten credit for a nearly-successful attempt.


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  #33  
Old November 8th, 2006, 7:14 pm
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

I think that Umbridge is tarred with the same brush as Barty Crouch Sr. He's definatly not evil in the way of LV, but she will stoop to their level, when she believe's she's right. She's most likely has OCD, and is single minded, if the Minister doesn't say it it isn't true. which is why she never heard Harry out to see if he could change her mind. Most honest good natured people would have at least heard what he had to say, before dismissing his claims. Her Fear of half humans, is probabley from a awful childhood experiance. But I can not make excuses for her manner in treating the students like small children, I hated it when one of my teachers did that to me. And I do not agree with her, that they should have been kept from learning how to do the spells practically. It goes against the reason for having the subject of Defense against the dark arts. And as for going to the extrems that she did by calling on the Dementors, and using a unforgivable, I think she's is on a power trip, and usuing such things almost makes her seem above the law. Now that Dumbledore is gone, I think Harry will be foreced to deal with the ministry, and I'm sure she is loyal to whom ever is in power. And Scrigmore who probabley doesn't know how much Harry hates her, will think, um, lets see, who at the ministry knows Harry, but wasn't loyal to Dumbledore like Arthur Weasley. Ah Doloras, here go make Harry our poster boy! use your influeance over him. she'll probabley come back with antlers or something.


  #34  
Old November 9th, 2006, 2:15 am
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

The only redeeming quality in Umbridge's character is how she characterizes two things at once: idiotic bureaucrats, and those evil and falsely sweet teachers. I laugh every time I read Umbridge's first lesson, because it reminds me irrestistably of a substitute teacher I had once, the sadistic hand-cutting aside ("...say 'Good afternoon, Professor Umbridge!'")


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Old November 13th, 2006, 3:32 am
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

As a teacher myself, Umbridge offends me in too many ways to list. Take her general twisted nature and evil nature as read (and someone made a good point about her being the epitome of a bureaucrat), and just look at her teaching style. Ecch.

I've got to think that JKR put her in the book as a slap against the bad teachers we've all had to suffer under, as well as all the other reasons she played such a large role in "Phoenix." But here are just a couple of things about Umbridge that grinds my professional gears.

She teaches completely through theory, not with any practical methodology whatsoever. In fact, she doesn't teach at all -- she presides over the class while the students read the textbook. The classes at Hogwarts, with the exception of Professor Ditto, er, Binns, are extremely hands-on, with lots of doing and very little bookwork except as a supplement. Not in her classes.

Secondly, we all know about the test-driven classes (in this case the OWL exams). Umbridge was teaching in a manner guaranteed to fail every student in there. There is no possible way any student can read their way into being able to pass those exams, when the first time they are asked to demonstrate a hands-on teaching item is when they're asked to do it for a test. Imagine you're in a chemistry class, and all you do is read about the various chemical reactions that are created when you mix this and that together. Then, for your final, you're actually placed at a lab table with a beaker and several substances and told to make something. It won't happen. Even Hermione needs some hands-on practice to perform a spell, though less than anyone else.

It's also a slap at the kind of "by-the-book" teaching that so many teachers do. If it's Monday, we're on thread 2B of the curriculum, if it's Friday, we're testing you on the content. Doesn't matter who's actually learned what, we're just going through the curriculum like little robots, step by step by boring step. The "Ministry-approved curriculum" is garbage, obviously, and designed NOT to teach the kids anything. If I had to make a wild stab, I'd say Umbridge is a secret Voldemort supporter, doing her best to make sure the kids in the class are unprepared to face the Death Eaters in any confrontations. (Hmmm, corruption and Death Eater collusion in the Ministry?)

Next, there's no fairness whatsoever in her class discipline. We've seen this all before, with Snape letting the Malfoys of the class get away with murder while the Potters get slammed for breathing hard, but Umbridge took that even farther. And don't get me started on writing lines of punishment in your own blood. What surprises me is that Dumbledore, knowing virtually everything that happens in Hogwarts, let her get away with assigning such punishments, even considering his tenuous position at the time.

I could go on, but I won't. (And I said in my last post, which was also my first post, that I wasn't going to be making any more posts in here. So much for that.) Anyone think that, after all the dust settles in Book 7, that Harry might one day end up being the DADA teacher? He will need some practical experience first, but taking out Voldemort and the various Death Eaters should give him more than enough -- especially considering the attrition likely to occur among the Order and Ministry Aurors in the final conflicts. No way to know, but it would have a certain symmetry that I find appealing. Maybe Harry's first step towards eventually being the Headmaster...? (I'm sure I'm not making any speculations others haven't already made, but still, it's an interesting idea.)


  #36  
Old November 20th, 2006, 12:15 am
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

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Originally Posted by MaxBlack View Post
I've got to think that JKR put her in the book as a slap against the bad teachers we've all had to suffer under, as well as all the other reasons she played such a large role in "Phoenix."
I think Umbridge represents more than just bad teachers in real life. I’ve had a boss whose general behaviour, ‘incentive system’ and IQ seemed quite close to Umbridge.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MaxBlack View Post
If I had to make a wild stab, I'd say Umbridge is a secret Voldemort supporter, doing her best to make sure the kids in the class are unprepared to face the Death Eaters in any confrontations. (Hmmm, corruption and Death Eater collusion in the Ministry?)
I still don’t really believe she’s a Voldemort supporter, but I see two other explanations with similar outcome. First, she doesn’t seem a very powerful witch in terms of magical abilities (cf. failed swamp removal attempts) so she might not want the students outperform her. Second, by keeping ordinary population unskilled, there is more ‘use’ and scope for the MoM – make-yourself-useful principle.

By the way, if you are interested in the corruption in the MoM theme, we have a little thread Bewitched Bureaucracy Relaunched for that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MaxBlack View Post
Next, there's no fairness whatsoever in her class discipline. We've seen this all before, with Snape letting the Malfoys of the class get away with murder while the Potters get slammed for breathing hard, but Umbridge took that even farther. And don't get me started on writing lines of punishment in your own blood.
Snape belongs to other threads, but I don’t think there’s actual evidence of him letting anybody get away with murder. I do agree that Umbridge is an incarnation of unfairness and a truly sadistic person based on her disciplinary methods.

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Originally Posted by MaxBlack View Post
What surprises me is that Dumbledore, knowing virtually everything that happens in Hogwarts, let her get away with assigning such punishments, even considering his tenuous position at the time.
Dumbledore appears quite hands-off headmaster in most respects – he allows all teachers significant freedom. And it also seems that the wizarding word is quite behind time in many respects regarding human rights and pedagogic standards…


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  #37  
Old December 18th, 2006, 12:38 am
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

Dear Dolores Umbridge. What a horrible woman. But I think she exemplifies what happens when a small-minded but determined person manages to acquire power.

She was deeply loyal to her Minister of Magic, who most unfortunately was corrupt, which led to her carrying out a Dementor attack on Harry during his summer holiday.

Her ridiculous Educational Decrees became more extreme with every challenge to her complete control, although the idea that she could control an entire school full of teachers and students is ridiculous. She had a good idea how to find people's vulnerabilities and exploit them to achieve her own control. That's something that's fairly common in the business world and in government. Her idea of doing what 's right was figuring out how to consolidate her power.

The cutting quill she used to drive her point home, into Harry's hand, is so saddistic that I wish I could discover she was a Death Eater. Unfortunately, Sirius was right about her. The world is not divided between good people and Death Eaters.

I look forward to seeing what JKR has in store for her in Book 7.


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Old December 18th, 2006, 1:07 am
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

I agree with those who say that Umbridge was not a Death Eater. Voldemort would describe her as a useful idiot.

Her viciousness induced some positive developments, like the D.A. The D.A. helped Harry on the train home when some members got the drop on Malfoy who was trying to ambush Harry.

Interestingly, after Dumbledore's Army was busted Umbridge formed her own student group, the Inquisitorial Squad.

Some real-life teachers have pointed out Umbridge as a fictionalized account of what happens at their schools when a central government tries to interfere in education.


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  #39  
Old December 19th, 2006, 8:35 pm
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

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I agree with those who say that Umbridge was not a Death Eater. Voldemort would describe her as a useful idiot.
Scrimgeour probably thinks of her the same way.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimmyPotter View Post
Her viciousness induced some positive developments, like the D.A. The D.A. helped Harry on the train home when some members got the drop on Malfoy who was trying to ambush Harry.

Interestingly, after Dumbledore's Army was busted Umbridge formed her own student group, the Inquisitorial Squad.
Well, the staff wasn't going to support her, so she'd have to recruit some people to help control that huge school. Filch couldn't do it all, could he? The way she uses people, encouraging them to do horrible things for the greater glory of Dolores Umbridge, is one reason I have no respect for the Ministry of Magic. She's not a young person, and must have been perfecting these tactics for years, in her career at the Ministry.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimmyPotter View Post
Some real-life teachers have pointed out Umbridge as a fictionalized account of what happens at their schools when a central government tries to interfere in education.
i think JKR knew precisely what she was doing when she designed Dolores Umbridge. It's an excellent piece of satire.


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Old February 1st, 2007, 3:46 am
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Re: Dolores Jane Umbridge : Character Analysis

I have to say that I found Dolores Umbridge a wonderful character. Obviously, she is mean, crude and horrible, but I can't help but chuckle to myself when she responds to the situations that arise in the book. Everytime she tries to make herself look, great and powerful, she ends up looking like a fool.

1) Jo herself describes Umbridge as evil. How does Dolores rate against the series villain, Lord Voldemort? When Harry was told the world wasn't divided between good people and Death Eaters, did that rule her out as a DE? Do you think her actions support Voldemort even if she isn't a DE?


I don't think that Umbridge is a death eater, but we do know that if a death eater would be able to help her out in a situation, she would not worry about using their help. Obviously her anti-half-blood tirates would help out Voldemort. By attempting to strip half-bloods of their liberties, she would effectivley drive them away from regular wizarding population and push them to revenge and to Voldemort would would be more than happy to take them in.


3) How is it that Dolores is still employed at the Ministry? Is she still 'loyal' to Fudge or has her loyalty shifted to Minister Scrimgeour? Is she Scrimgeour's Senior Undersecretary or does she now have another title/job?

I am sure that Dolores had shifted her loyalties to Scrimgeour, she loves power and ad Fudge doesn't have it any more I bet she dropped him as fast as she could. Since J.K. said that Dolores has "good connections" with in the ministry, I am sure that she is still holding a high-powered job, if she is still not the senior undersecretary.

4) How do you think Jo will give Umbridge her due in Book 7? What personality traits or actions could lead to her being involved in the plot?

It would be interesting to see Dolores being placed back into Hogwarts, if it reopens, but I'm sure that she would not be placed there. I'm sure in Dolores's mind she did a wonderful job at Hogwarts and was wrongfully ousted, due to those two "pesky kids". I think she would have to be an idiot to except a job back at Hogwarts, but then again look at who we're talking about. Probably though, she will end up staying at the Ministry. Dolores will probably try to get revenge on Harry and Hermione and use her ministry might to try again to disprove "the chosen one" or either make life real tough for him.......

either way I am so ready for book 7, and cant wait to see Umbridge again.


 
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