J.K. Rowling

J.K. Rowling is a British author, best known for the Harry Potter series, but she’s also written a novel about English small-town in-drama (The Casual Vacancy) and a series of mystery novel (the Cormoran Strike series, under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith).

When she first became famous, she was regarded at least as a centre-left figure: staunch supporter of the Labour Party, spoke positively about the welfare state, wrote a children’s book series with central themes of anti-racism and governmental corruption, and so forth. In recent years this reputation has been very much eroded, and she’s become widely disliked by almost anyone who considers themselves progressive or left-wing. Some of the reasons for that include:

  • She doesn’t see trans women as women, and writes angry rants on Twitter about how she wants them using the men’s public toilets and that kind of thing
  • She was super opposed to Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership of the Labour Party, and merrily spread rubbish about his supposed anti-Semitism just as many other wealthy British “Labour supporters” with high media profiles did
  • She parrots Israeli talking points about Palestine and Palestinians, defending Israeli killings of Palestinian civilians as necessary self-defence while denouncing peaceful Palestinian resistance (e.g. BDS) as evil and anti-Semitic
  • Some of her world-building in Harry Potter – for example, her depiction of the goblin bankers at Gringotts is alleged to draw on anti-Semitic stereotypes, and her depiction of house elves is seen as pro-slavery (because the house elves are forced, by magic, into domestic slavery, where they are treated appallingly by many wizards, and yet when Hermione begins a campaign to free them, she is depicted as the bad guy for trying to wrest them from a situation that 99% of them actually like)

Less seriously, but still annoyingly for many Harry Potter fans, she’s come up with a number of post-facto proclamations about Harry Potter canon that fans find ridiculous, or even kind of a betrayal of the tightly-plotted story they grew up with. A number of these stem from the play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, which includes a number of “revelations” such as that Voldemort actually had a child, and that Nagini (his snake) was actually a human being cursed to look like a snake. One other “revelation” that didn’t come from that play, but just something J.K. posted online, was that wizards used to poop and pee in their pants and magic the evidence away. Fans found this kind of insulting, I guess, and many have simply decided that nothing J.K. says affects canon at this point.