Harry Potter, Special Education, and the Canadian Supreme Court: A Comparative Legal and Literary Analysis
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Children’s and young adult literature open the hearts and minds of their readers to new characters and possibilities. At the same time, literature also has the potential to introduce new ideas and shape readers’ views on respective topics. Given this, one must carefully scrutinize the presented narrative texts in order to ensure that the images and ideas disseminated in them are accurate. This is particularly the case when one discovers characters with disabilities in these monographs because, historically, people with disabilities have been depicted in stereotypical ways. The problem associated with these inappropriate literary representations of disabled people is located when readers of these texts mistake the characterizations of disabled people in literature as authentic representations. This can lead to inaccurate and harmful stereotypes about people with disabilities, stigmatization, and the exclusion of people with disabilities by their peers and communities. In response to the problems associated with the textual representations of people with disabilities in children’s and young adult literature, this paper conducts a comparative legal educational analysis of J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter Series by comparing the Canadian education equality laws with the ones that exist in J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter Series.