Harry Potter popularity

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On the charge of commodification (which has been laid against the Harry Potter series), Vandana Saxena writes that there is “some justification. The Harry Potter brand is worth about 15 million dollars. Movies, computer games, a Harry Potter theme park – all are part of the phenomenon now termed Pottermania.
“To an extent, sales and statistics are valid since popular could be defined as that which people enjoy, buy and consume. As of 2011, the series had sold more than 450 million copies and has been translated into 70 languages. Also in circulation are unauthorized translations of true Harry Potter books and published pastiches or fanfictions that have attempted to pass themselves off as real books.” (p.8)

“Several critics have found the Potter series worth serious academic scrutiny precisely due to its popularity. Anthologies of critical essays problematize the simplistic equation of the popularity of the series with market strategies (Anatol, Reading Harry Potter; Whited, The Ivory Tower; Hielman, Critical Perspectives). Critics like Alison Lurie have embraced the idea of commercial success as a part of the series, an indispensable element of the Harry Potter phenomenon (‘Pottery’).” (p.9)

Ref: Vandana Saxena (2012) The Subversive Harry Potter: Adolescent Rebellion and Containment in the J.K. Rowling Novels. McFarland & Company: Jefferson, NC and London.

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