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Humanities Edge Undergraduate Research Symposium | Summer 2020



J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series of books have been a steadfast presence in the children’s literature world since they were first published in 1997. Since then, they have enamored millions of readers from a range of age groups, playing a vital role in their developments, primarily between the ages of 11 to 18. When examining Rowling's books, it becomes apparent that it resonates vividly through the cultural lens, inviting the creation of countless clubs, merchandise, subsequent books and even theme parks. However, despite its unquestionable role in the lives of countless people, the amount of research concerning its correlation to coping mechanisms is quite limited. As such, the goal of this research is to ascertain textual and supporting evidence that would display how the Harry Potter series acts as a "guidebook" that teaches the reader to apply various coping mechanisms to their own lives. The author’s progressive narrative throughout the seven books, each paralleling the growth of the reader, touches upon real life topics that are relatable. Part of the Harry's journey, and by extension the reader's, is learning how to adaptively cope when situations arise with the help of friends and mentors. This research aims to establish the credibility of J.K. Rowling's series as a useful tool that can help readers handle real-world problems as they join the literary characters in their own journeys.


Research Paper

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