OT: Ika's Cuaron quote

Ika blake at gaudaprime.co.uk
Fri Jul 16 07:20:23 EDT 2004

(On whether or not Remus Lupin is gay)

Hmm. What counts as a metaphor for what is a bit of a theme at the moment,
isn't it? (Drug-taking/slavery, lycanthropy/homosexuality...) Interesting.
I have to say that I'm unconvinced by the suggestion that lycanthropy (an
uncontrollable, indiscriminate desire which places all those near you at
risk of physical harm and death) is a good metaphor for homosexuality,
though I may be misreading you, Kyra, when you say:

> Well, Lupin's "why I'm leaving" speech at the end, with phrases like
> "people like me" and how the parents would be upset was *so* completely
> "I'm gay and they wouldn't like it." Although it works quite well as a
> euphemism as well as a literal truth--being a werewolf includes both
> things that are fine and part of him and you shouldn't judge him for it,
> and things that are dangerous and bad for him and others around him and,
> yeah, large numbers of unaware kids probably shouldn't be in close
> proximity. Not that he could be accused of leading the poor innocent
> things into werewolfism. ;^)

(That penultimate sentence structure is a bit complicated, so I can't tell
whether you meant to suggest that "large numbers of unaware kids shouldn't
be in close proximity" to a gay teacher, or just to a werewolf: if the
latter, I agree, obviously! I agree that Lupin's "people like me" speech
sounds as though he could be referring either to his lycanthropism or to
his homosexuality, as well, but I don't think the metaphor goes much
further than that).

Aimee wrote:

> I see what people mean and how his character may have been interpreted in
> this light by some readers. Confirmation of a social analogy would add new
> and interesting depth to the book. But I'd wait for confirmation before
> labelling Lupin as anything other than a werewolf. It may be an analogy,
> but that might only mean werewolfism is a symbol of homosexuality, rather
> than that Lupin is both a werewolf and homosexual within the actual story.

Again, I'm wary of taking werewolfism as a "symbol" of homosexuality. The
reasons Lupin seems to me to be gay are that (1) he has close and loving
relationships only with men; (2) there is never any hint that he has any
sexual interest in women; and (3) he and Sirius (who by the fifth book
seem to be living together) are described as "like a married couple". (In
the film, they fall into each other's arms a lot, too.) I'm not quite sure
what confirmation is needed: a lot of fictional characters are "labelled"
heterosexual on flimsier evidence of opposite-sex orientation.

Love, Ika

"You walk into the room like a camel"
- Truly, Bob Dylan is a great poet.
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