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CNN Feature on Harry Potter Alliance and Andrew Slack

Posted by: sue
July 16, 2009, 09:00 AM

With so much attention on the release of the Half-Blood Prince movie, there is also coverage of the larger Harry Potter today, with a new CNN feature on the Harry Potter Alliance and a new interview with founder Andrew Slack. He says he was motivated to help found the HPA as he "saw that the books weren't just empowering personally," he said. "I think the books speak to something that is very unique, because ["Potter" author] J.K. Rowling has been able to express a story about the importance of love."

The HPA is described as "a nonprofit organization dedicated to engaging Potter fans in social activism," with the piece highlighting some of the efforts readers here at TLC will recall: "The alliance also helped hundreds to register to vote last year, according to Slack. Earlier this year, the Harry Potter Alliance conducted a book drive for children around the world, an effort led by "Potter" actress Evanna Lynch. Slack said they raised over 13,000 books, 4,000 of which went to youths in Rwanda who were very young at the time of the Rwandan genocide"

CNN includes comments from several of the  4,500 members, and mentions the current "What Would Dumbledore Do" campaign. The news site also makes note that Harry Potter author JK Rowling has praised the group publicly in the past. "It's incredible, it's humbling, and it's uplifting to see people going out there and doing that in the name of your character," she told Time magazine in 2007. "What did my books preach against throughout? Bigotry, violence, struggles for power, no matter what. All of these things are happening in Darfur. So they really couldn't have chosen a better cause."

Finally, the article makes mention that there are some who criticize the efforts of the HPA, with the piece reading: "Some bloggers have criticized the group for taking their fandom too far or using young fans' love of Harry Potter to promote an agenda. Slack denies that he has a partisan agenda. "I sort of took it as a compliment," he explained. At the same time, he hopes that at least some of their causes, such as promoting literacy, are things that all can agree on." Members of the group agree: "There are issues I didn't know much about or hadn't thought about too deeply that I'm now involved in, like Darfur," Bolton said. "It has introduced me to new issues and new ideas."

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4452 Points

first comment!

4452 Points

wow!!! the HPA is really fantastic!!

93 Points

That’s so cool! It’s amazing that a book series can open people’s eyes to the problems facing the world.

Yay, first post!

Posted by Aliyah95 on July 16, 2009, 09:07 AM report to moderator
2105 Points

That’s terrific exposure for the HPA!

Posted by Agrippa1 on July 16, 2009, 09:12 AM report to moderator
2926 Points

That is a great article. I hope the HPA is getting new members now, and that it’ll grow even further..

Posted by Niphai on July 16, 2009, 09:14 AM report to moderator
2064 Points

That’s amazing, so happy more people are recognizing the great things HPA does, it is well deserved!

Posted by hp29 [ROAR!] on July 16, 2009, 09:28 AM report to moderator
8876 Points

yay another HPA article but, good grief of course there will be some people that criticize the HPA. There’s always someone critizing something. There are campaigns over at HPA but, there is no cohersing anyone to support anything. And, I cant understand how it can be taking the fandom too far. Dumbledore’s Army was about doing something. Fans will be fanatical. Surely it’s a good idea to have a not for profit that can point that enthusiasm in the right direction. Maybe to some people, the notion of fans doing something for free like giving books to people without books, is just too frightening to cope with …

Posted by Moose_Starr on July 16, 2009, 10:01 AM report to moderator
32 Points

You know you’re doing something right if you’re getting criticized.

Huzzah for the HPA getting more and more recognition for the great things it’s done… I love that I get to be a part of something that’s doing so much good for the world. And that it combines my favorite thing in the world, HP, with doing good and standing up for what you believe in.

Ridiculously awesome. And Andrew Slack is wicked cool. :D Just sayin’.


Posted by KarmaLatte on July 16, 2009, 10:13 AM report to moderator
240 Points

that great

Posted by TasyaWeasley on July 16, 2009, 10:13 AM report to moderator
243 Points

Long live Dumbledore, and the HPA!

Posted by PaintTheSky on July 16, 2009, 10:17 AM report to moderator
16258 Points

cool. They may be getting the more widespread attention that they really wanted.

Posted by Gryffindor1991 {ROAR!!!} on July 16, 2009, 10:18 AM report to moderator
141 Points

I can believe the Harry Potter Alliance is on CNN wow that is awesome, HPA is going places.SQUEE

Posted by minishiva on July 16, 2009, 10:55 AM report to moderator
80450 Points

That’s good news!

Posted by Won_Two on July 16, 2009, 01:22 PM report to moderator
271 Points

I’m happy that the HPA is getting the acclaim that they deserve. Good for Andrew and good for the HPA!!

Posted by monicahp2009(WBM) on July 16, 2009, 08:17 PM report to moderator
622 Points

Awesome! This is so exciting – I can’t wait to see what comes of it! I love the HPA.

Posted by The Hufflepuff Giraffe on July 16, 2009, 10:52 PM report to moderator
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