Remember how Hermione constantly nags Harry and Ron to brush up on Hogwarts: A History? “Bathilda’s Notebook” is the place to find out more about the real history behind Hogwarts’ creation. Writing with cutting-edge literary analysis of the series, Bathilda explores the literature and ideas that have most inspired Rowling, from Shakespeare to Sherlock Holmes.
Dr. Beatrice Groves teaches Shakespeare at Oxford University and is the author of Literary Allusion in Harry Potter, which is available now.
- The Names of “The Ickabog” – Part 2: Ichabod (July 23, 2020) - Dr. Beatrice Groves uncovers how "The Ickabog" alludes to not just the name "Ichabod" but also the themes, plot, and narration of Washington Irving's "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow."
- The Names of “The Ickabog” – Part 1 (July 22, 2020) - Dr. Beatrice Groves reveals the meaning behind the names of "The Ickabog" and explains how this newest fairy tale connects not only to the "Harry Potter" series and "Casual Vacancy" but also to such diverse artists as Shakespeare, Keats, and Monty Python.
- Solve et Coagula: Part 3 – Literary Alchemy (May 25, 2020) - In Part 3 of her "solve et coagula" analysis, Dr. Beatrice Groves explains how literary alchemy influences J.K. Rowling's writing process.
- Solve et Coagula: Part 2 – The Ripley Scrolls, Nicolas Flamel, and Ben Jonson’s Alchemist (May 24, 2020) - Dr. Beatrice Groves looks further into the origins of the phrase "solve et coagula" and the way in which it encapsulates Rowling’s own metaphors for her "process."
- Solve et Coagula: Part 1 – Rowling’s Alchemical Tattoo (May 23, 2020) - Last year, J.K. Rowling got a tattoo of the alchemical Latin phrase "solve et coagula." Read about how the phrase has an intimate connection with everything she writes.
- “The Faerie Queene” and the Fifth “Strike” Novel: “Troubled Blood” (March 22, 2020) - On March 20, 2020, J.K. Rowling changed her Twitter header to an image taken from "The Faerie Queene", an epic poem containing the phrase "troubled blood," the title of the forthcoming "Comoran Strike" novel. What relevance, beyond inspiring its title, will "The Faerie Queene" have on "Troubled Blood"?
- “Potter” and “Python” – Part 2: “Monty Python and the Holy Grail” (October 5, 2019) - To mark the 50th anniversary of "Monty Python's Flying Circus", Dr. Beatrice Groves is exploring links between "Potter" and "Python". In this second article in a two-part series, she writes about how "Potter" echoes "Holy Grail".
- “Potter” and “Python” – Part 1: “Monty Python’s Life of Brian” (October 4, 2019) - To mark the 50th anniversary of "Monty Python's Flying Circus", Dr. Beatrice Groves is exploring links between "Potter" and "Python". In this first article in a two-part series, she writes about how "Potter" echoes "Life of Brian".
- The Sword Until Recently Known as Gryffindor’s (March 20, 2019) - Dr. Beatrice Groves dissects the moral challenge of the goblin perspective on the ownership of Gryffindor's sword, which is strongly linked to our popular understanding of Marxism.
- Rowling’s Goblin Problem? (March 19, 2019) - With the opening of an exhibition, "Jews, Money, Myth", at the Jewish Museum London, Dr. Beatrice Groves ponders whether the depiction of goblins in "Harry Potter" is anti-Semitic.