Anamorphosis (Jun 2020)

Dumbledore’s army: civil disobedience in “Harry Potter and The Order of the Phoenix”

  • Arthur Emanuel Leal Abreu,
  • Alexandre de Castro Coura

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 6, no. 1
pp. 177 – 198


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This paper explores the connection between law and literature, considering the concept of civil disobedience as developed in the plot of the novel Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. To do so, this research uses the approach of law in literature, by linking the actions of Dumbledore’s Army to the theory of civil disobedience by Dworkin. Also, the narrative is compared to the conception of civil disobedience as a fundamental right, based on the conflict between facticity and validity, as described by Habermas. Thus, the analysis identifies, in the novel, two categories of civil disobedience proposed by Dworkin, and discusses, in real life, the overlapping of disobedience based on justice and on politics, in order to identify the conditions that justify actions of civil disobedience. Besides that, this paper analyzes the tension between legality and legitimacy, considering the decisions of the Ministry of Magic and its educational decrees, which sets the school community apart from the official political power. In conclusion, the research examines the use of persuasive and non-persuasive strategies and the reach of civil disobedience’s purposes based on the actions of Harry Potter and of Dumbledore’s Army.