Magical Gender Trouble

I agree with Dana about this. Let me also re-iterate, for those who weren't convinced by the discussion of the politics of Transformers, that it's perfectly appropriate to try to analyze and understand the ideological and political themes of "non-serious" works. The relevant issue isn't whether or not JK Rowling meant to send such-and-such message about gender roles, or whether or not the intended audience is likely to consciously process the messages as there in the text.

The point is that all works -- and especially things like Harry Potter or popcorn action movies that have been assembled out of cliché and don't seem all that rigorously plotted -- reflect certain kinds of ideas about society.