Supporting The Upcoming “Hogwarts Legacy” Game Is Worth Excusing Transphobia?

JK Rowling
Image via Twitter @cmclymer

There comes a time when you have no choice but to make a decision. I feel that for some Harry Potter fans, the time is near. In my opinion, for those who stand with the transgender community (and aren’t TERFs), not supporting the upcoming Hogwarts Legacy game shouldn’t even be something to think about.

An open-world RPG set in the world of Harry Potter has been long rumored. Now, we know that said game is indeed a reality. Hogwarts Legacy will be released sometime next year. The announcement was made by Warner Bros. during Sony’s PlayStation 5 live stream event today.

However, due to recent comments made by author J.K. Rowling, I can’t, in good conscience, support something that she will directly profit from. Make no mistake. Even if Rowling’s involvement in Hogwarts Legacy ends up being very limited, she will still profit from the game’s success.

Not only did Rowling write a letter sharing her problematic stance toward the transgender community, but she also wrote a 900-page fictional book that features a serial killer (a man) who dresses up as a woman. The said book also has casual Islamophobia talking about how wearing a burqa would be the easiest way for a man to present as a woman.

Sigh!

I get that the Harry Potter franchise is near and dear to many around the world. And you know what? There’s nothing wrong with re-reading those stories and creating your own. The Harry Potter fandom has grown bigger than Rowling’s control. You can enjoy it the way you want. Go support your favorite Harry Potter fan artist, parody account, etc.

But things are different when you consume Harry Potter content that Rowling directly profits from. Supporting Hogwarts Legacy is one such thing.

And while I understand that separating the art from the artist might not be difficult for some, in my opinion, protecting actual human lives (such as the vulnerable transgender community) SHOULD be bigger than any piece of entertainment especially when it appears that said artist is set in their problematic ways.

So, again, I implore you to ask yourselves. If you’re someone who supports the transgender community and are also anti-TERF, is not playing Hogwarts Legacy or buying Harry Potter merchandise (from outlets Rowling profits from) too much to ask? 

Author: Farid-ul-Haq

Farid has a Double Masters in Psychology and Biotechnology as well as an M.Phil in Molecular Genetics. He is the author of numerous books including Missing in Somerville, and The Game Master of Somerville. He gives us insight into comics, books, TV shows, anime/manga, video games, and movies.


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About the author

Farid has a Double Masters in Psychology and Biotechnology as well as an M.Phil in Molecular Genetics. He is the author of numerous books including Missing in Somerville, and The Game Master of Somerville. He gives us insight into comics, books, TV shows, anime/manga, video games, and movies.

Comments

  1. I’m a trans woman. I’ve been struggling all day figuring out what to do. Harry Potter and it’s universe is so near and dear to my heart, it was a form of escapism that i used, ironically, to escape from my reality of being trans and feeling different and like an outcast. This game is one that I’ve wanted since I was 10 years old. It puts me in a particularly rough spot. If it’s as good as it looks so far, I’ll buy it used a week or so after it comes out.

    1. I can’t even begin to imagine how Rowling’s words must continue to feel for you. And yes, considering the HP fandom is still special to many, that’s why I made a point in my article about how fans can still get HP stuff (including this game) by using sources that Rowling doesn’t directly profit from.

  2. The solution: Buy second hand. What do I mean? Buy from Best Buy’s / Gamestop’s “Used Games” section, this way the money goes to the people who resold it, and not to JK Rowling. If you buy new, then yes, you are indeed lobbying against LGBT inclusion laws, as JK Rowling is activelly campaigning.

  3. As a gay man’s perspective what I can see is that the queer community is going to learn that nothing has really changed. Mostly what we saw in the last few years was a small window of acceptance and we are now seeing a backlash to that.

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