Twilight under the Sorting Hat

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Twilight under the Sorting Hat

Postby vampbball » Wed Dec 01, 2010 1:05 pm

Mod's Note: This conversation began on the Edward Cullen #6 thread, but since it seems to have taken a serious lease of life, I'm moving it to a thread of its own.

So IS Edward a Gryffindor....? (see below)


Hi all. December, I'm not sure where to put this, because I wanted to discuss Edward and a character from another series (Harry Potter), and I don't know if it will be of general interest.

Anyways, with Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part I coming out, I've been re-reading the book. I've always loved Severus Snape, but this time his tragic situation kept reminding me a bit of someone, and I finally realized today that he reminds me of Edward. I know that sounds very strange: the unattractive, unkind Snape being compared to Edward Cullen. But man do they have some similar qualities. They love loyally, beyond all reason or hope. They're unhesitatingly brave. They both have a cynical view of the world, and especially of their own natures. They both have access to power and have used it against humans, and both later repented. Finally, they both have sensitive, discerning minds; they see underlying motives quickly (though Bella is a blind spot for Edward). Edward is nicer and better-looking than Snape, and those qualities allowed him to be treated better than Snape, but really they're made from the same anti-hero mold.

I will say, though, I don't think Edward could have pulled off what Snape did; Snape has a core of steel and no Bella to lose.
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Re: Edward Cullen #6

Postby December » Wed Dec 01, 2010 1:40 pm

Intriguing. I'm not sure where to put it either -- I think it's Edward-y enough to belong right here, at least for now. If the conversation veers too far into HP, we can move it to a more HP-oriented thread.

It's certainly not an obvious comparison, but I grant you that there's a perspective from which Edward is (at least partly) an anti-hero. It's been a while since I've read Book 7, so not sure I'm qualified to comment in detail. Thoughts anyone?
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Re: Edward Cullen #6

Postby Jazz Girl » Wed Dec 01, 2010 11:47 pm

vampbball wrote:Hi all. December, I'm not sure where to put this, because I wanted to discuss Edward and a character from another series (Harry Potter), and I don't know if it will be of general interest.

Anyways, with Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part I coming out, I've been re-reading the book. I've always loved Severus Snape, but this time his tragic situation kept reminding me a bit of someone, and I finally realized today that he reminds me of Edward. I know that sounds very strange: the unattractive, unkind Snape being compared to Edward Cullen. But man do they have some similar qualities. They love loyally, beyond all reason or hope. They're unhesitatingly brave. They both have a cynical view of the world, and especially of their own natures. They both have access to power and have used it against humans, and both later repented. Finally, they both have sensitive, discerning minds; they see underlying motives quickly (though Bella is a blind spot for Edward). Edward is nicer and better-looking than Snape, and those qualities allowed him to be treated better than Snape, but really they're made from the same anti-hero mold.

I will say, though, I don't think Edward could have pulled off what Snape did; Snape has a core of steel and no Bella to lose.


It is certainly an intriguing comparison. The similarities certainly cannot be denied, though I think each has certain characteristics that they take to their own extreme. Yes, both have a cynical view of their own nature, but Edward's self-loathing is fairly epic, where as Snape rarely even appears to contemplate the events that have gotten him to where he currently does, or when he does, rarely contemplates how it could be different. Where Edward's need for redemption causes him to constantly question his every move and motive, Snape does not, in my opinion. Where Edward sees only himself as his enemy, turning all of his shame inward, Snape sees James, and by extension, Harry as his tormentors. Yes, he does what he does for love of Lilly, but he never extends his love beyond her. Edward, through his love for Bella, extends his love to all those in her life, those who she counts as friend, even his mortal enemy. And, finally, the key difference. Edward did not lose his only love and I think, therein we can see why their paths are so different. Bella's love for Edward bettered him, and he allowed it to do so. Snape's love for Lilly could have bettered him, but he turned his back from that and he lost her because of that. As to whether or not Edward could have pulled of Snape's mission... it is precisely those key differences that gave Snape the ability to do it. He had already lost his love to the very person he was seeking to destroy.
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Re: Edward Cullen #6

Postby Esme echo » Thu Dec 02, 2010 1:17 pm

The main difference between Snape and Edward is that Snape was a Slytherin, "folk [who] use any means to achieve their ends," and if Edward had attended Hogwarts, he would probably have been a Hufflepuff, "just and loyal . . . patient . . . unafraid of toil." (Possibly a Ravenclaw: a ready mind, those of wit and learning.)

You could make a case for Edward to belong to any of the other three houses, but definately not Slytherin. Snape had unsavory associates--one of the reasons Lily criticized him--and he was a vicious man. I don't think Edward resembled him in either capacity. Edward's consideration for others was one of his major characteristics. Even during his rebellious years he cared which humans he took down. He lived on a much higher plane than Snape. Edward was truly a monster who governed himself ruthlessly; Snape was a normal warlock, who allowed himself to become a monster. (Can you imagine Snape as a vampire? He would have been of the worst sort! Aro would have loved him!)

The comparisons vampbball made are very interesting, and certainly have merit, but I don't think you can take it much farther.
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Re: Edward Cullen #6

Postby December » Fri Dec 03, 2010 5:19 am

Not a Gryffindor, you reckon? Interesting. Because that would definitely have been my first thought. Dogged courage, honour, valour. (And it's not as though Dumbledore and McGonnagal are exactly unintellectual either!) Whereas Bella screams Hufflepuff to me: loyal, humble, clumsy....

Hmmm. Do we have a possible new thread here -- or is this discussion WAY too silly?
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Re: Edward Cullen #6

Postby Jazz Girl » Fri Dec 03, 2010 12:36 pm

Esme Echo~ The Rob-lover in me giggled a little at the assignment of Edward to Hufflpuff. I'm such a goob somedays. But, that's beside the point. I have to say, I agree with December in believing that Edward would be a Gryffindor. Brave, daring and chivalrous are the three keywords I've always seen in describing Godric's housemates. Edward takes chivalry to a new level and his courage can not be challenged. Daring is one I can see people challenging. But, I believe he was, in his own way, very daring. Certainly, his actions with Bella, deciding to pursue a relationship, letting go of some of his rigid control to be near her, defying even the oldest and most kept vampire law, could be seen as daring. Of course, his position in Gryffindor would then make him a polar opposite to Severus Snape, wouldn't it?
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Re: Edward Cullen #6

Postby ringswraith » Fri Dec 03, 2010 1:49 pm

Might I play devil's advocate here for a bit?

What exactly makes one think Edward would be in Gryffindor? Courage? Pre-Bella, I don't really see that. (And- well, not post, but during-Bella- his willingness to put himself before danger stems completely out of a sense of protectiveness of Bella.)

As we see in... that book... Edward is basically just surviving. Going through the motions. Replaying a routine. He did what he had to do, to protect his family, and that was basically it. Even in times when they were not around humans, he spent most of his time reading, accumulating knowledge, or- let's face it- moping. To me, this reeks of conformity, not courage.

Once Bella is in his life, yes, he starts making some (from his side of things) radical decisions. But most of this is out of a desire to 1) be near Bella and 2) protect Bella. Add the fact that in most instances, he downplays any danger to himself because he feels he is able to take care of himself. It could be pride, or just confidence in his self, but it certainly doesn't take much courage to face someone you feel you can take down, right?

To me, he can either be a Hufflepuff or Ravenclaw. He's loyal and protective of those he cares about, and certainly "unafraid of toil" as we have seen, although I'm not so sure I'd qualify him as being patient. :) As for Ravenclaw, he's incredibly smart, and almost coldly logical. But in my opinion, the scales are tilted more towards Hufflepuff.
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Re: Edward Cullen #6

Postby Esme echo » Fri Dec 03, 2010 1:58 pm

Thank you, ringswraith. I agree with you totally. I love Edward, but he is a seventeen-year-old at heart, and pretty self-involved. He's a good kid (I depend on Carlisle's assessment here), but there's nothing terribly heroic about Edward in my mind.

He does, however, have a great deal of unflinching emotional courage. Right and wrong are very clear to him; but he just can't help himself when it comes to Bella. . . .that whole "change is permanent" vampire thing.

No, I don't think Edward's heroic, just driven to protect what he loves.

BTW, December, I smile a bit at your placing Bella in Hufflepuff . . . I would have put her in Gryffindor! Despite her low self-esteem, Bella had tremendous courage, and willingly sacrificed her well-being for those she loved -- repeatedly.
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Re: Edward Cullen #6

Postby corona » Fri Dec 03, 2010 3:07 pm

Can someone get ahold of that sorting hat, so we can settle these issues once and for all?
"It will take an amazing amount of control,” she mused. “More even than Carlisle has. He may be just strong enough…the only thing he’s not strong enough to do is stay away from her. That’s a lost cause.”
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Re: Edward Cullen #6

Postby vampbball » Fri Dec 03, 2010 3:21 pm

Whoa! A conversation started, yay! EsmeEcho, I almost feel like you're contradicting yourself here, by saying that you don't consider Edward a hero, when you wrote just a few posts earlier,

Esme echo wrote:Edward's consideration for others was one of his major characteristics. Even during his rebellious years he cared which humans he took down. He lived on a much higher plane than Snape. Edward was truly a monster who governed himself ruthlessly; Snape was a normal warlock, who allowed himself to become a monster. (Can you imagine Snape as a vampire? He would have been of the worst sort! Aro would have loved him!)


I like what you wrote here and think it's in line with JazzGirl's analysis, too; we don't really know how far Snape's repentance extends. But I've always been hung up on Snape's mysterious motives. If he were nothing more than a self-protecting ego, but one who hated Voldemort for killing Lily, he could easily have acted for evil on his own. There are so many ways to do wrong: do nothing, collude quietly, act and hide... But he instead he turned to Dumbledore. And acted with Dumbledore to protect Harry. It can't have been mere revenge against Voldemort that drove this lifecourse change; the path he took was the absolute hardest path available. In short I think his love for Lily DID better him, though tragically not until after she died.

So, with rose-colored glasses firmly in place, I think that if Snape were a vampire, there would still be hope for him. He'd do great with the Volturi at first, but then would be the type to discover something, like the truth about Aro and Marcus for example. Eventually he would go his own way. And perhaps he would find a rational morality that would cause him to care about human life, however distantly, just as he found a way to care about Harry's wellbeing.

But I agree, Edward is not complex and conflicted in this way. He always knew he valued humans, which is amazing. As for him not being a hero, how could he have been with the limits the Cullens set up for themselves for coexisting in both worlds. What would constitute heroism for Edward, within the parameters of not fighting monsters or natural phenomena to save humans? Or calling attention to himself? I guess it depends on how you define "hero," whether the Cullens are heroes for fighting their own nature, but doing little more beyond that. (I see their primary goal as protecting themselves and the life they've chosen.)

P.S. Is anyone else imagining Edward showing up in the Hufflepuff common room, running into Cedric Diggory, and both of them going, "Whoa..." Edward can't be Hufflepuff for that reason alone - the Rob effect is blowing my mind. ;)
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