Misdirection, Deception, and Disguises In Harry Potter

voldemort and elder wand

We’re back with a new quiz! This one will require you to remember details from ALL of the Harry Potter books. Specifically, do you know how much of a role misdirection, deception, and disguises played throughout J.K. Rowling’s beloved series? Well, you’re about to find out!

1. Why doesn’t the Elder Wand work for Voldemort the way he wants it to?

 

2. How does Harry mislead both Ron and Hermione before Ron’s spectacular performance at a Quidditch match in the Half Blood Prince?

 

3. How does Hermione mislead Umbridge when the evil Headmistress is about to punish every member of the DA for their clandestine activities?

 

4. Who is the very first person in the Harry Potter series to appear in disguise?

 

5. What DA member is in disguise in the Hog’s Head during the first DA meeting?

 

Did you know?

Harry Potter and the Art of Spying author Lynn Boughey adopted someone else’s identity in order to travel to Chara, Russia to research his spy novel Mission to Chara in 1993. He had to memorize his taxi driver’s passport and pretend not to understand the train conductress when she asked for identification. You don’t have to be a spy to use misdirection, deception, and disguises!

Answers: Recruitment and Handling

Slughorn and Dumbledore

How much do you know about recruitment and handling in the Harry Potter series? Check your answers from yesterday’s quiz to find out! Be sure to tell us how you did in the comments!

1. How did Grindelwald nearly recruit Dumbledore? What ultimately made his recruitment efforts fail?

Grindelwald’s charisma and intellect was attractive to Dumbledore and Grindelwald appealed to Dumbledore’s desire for power. However, when Arianna, Dumbledore’s sister, died, Dumbledore rejected the attempted recruitment and learned humility.

2. Why does Hagrid’s attempt to bribe the giants fail?

The giants are interesting in two things: payment and power. Hagrid’s attempt to bribe them almost works until  a different giant becomes the leader of the group and is more attracted to the power the Death Eaters offer him.

3. Why is Dumbledore successful in recruiting Slughorn to teach at Hogwarts in Book 6?

Using psychological analysis, Dumbledore understand that Slughorn loves to take credit for his students’ accomplishments and to take advantage of his connection to them as they gain power and prestige later in life. Dumbledore counts on Slughorn’s need to feel important when he offers the old professor the chance to mentor Hogwarts most notable student – Harry Potter.

4. What device does Mrs. Weasley have to “handle” her large family when they are out of her sight?

A clock that tells her where they are and even whether or not they’re in danger!

5. How does Voldemort ensure that his followers do what he wants them to?

He recruits people who fear and admire him. 

Can’t wait to learn more about spies in Harry Potter? Stop back here on Thursday for another spy profile!

The Daily Prophet and the Deathly Hallows

dh.c22--the-deathly-hallows

Going Underground:

The Daily Prophet under Ministry control, Potterwatch Begins, and The Quibbler Quibbles

In the final book, the Daily Prophet serves many uses, depending on who is in control of the paper at the time. For example, Professor Charity Burbage successfully publishes a spirited defense of half-bloods. However, she is then captured, tortured, and murdered at Voldemort’s hands in the Malfoys’ home (DH 12).

The paper also contains a positive obituary of Dumbledore written by a longtime friend (DH 15–20) and an interview with Rita Skeeter about her forthcoming negative book on Dumbledore (DH 22–28). Both perspectives become integral aspects of Harry’s rocky journey toward making his own choices and mistakes.

We also learn from the Daily Prophet that Harry is now “sought for questioning” about Dumbledore’s death (DH 207). The Daily Prophet announces the “Muggle-born Register” (DH 208) and that Professor Snape has been selected as Hogwarts’s new Headmaster (DH 225). In addition, the Daily Prophet informs our three good friends, who are on the run, that Hermione is “on the list of Muggle-borns who didn’t present themselves for interrogation” (DH 231). A picture from the Daily Prophet of Harry, Ron, and Hermione escaping from Gringotts on the back of a dragon is later used by the Snatchers to determine that they have just captured Hermione and Harry (DH 451).Without access to other forms of information, the Daily Prophet, no matter how corrupt and biased, provides vital open source intelligence to the Trio.

Once again, Harry is personally attacked as “Undesirable Number One” (DH 252, 315, 525), complete with wanted posters bearing his picture. Once Voldemort is in control of the Ministry of Magic, nothing in the Daily Prophet can be considered credible. Once again, the alternative newspaper, The Quibbler, attempts to describe what is really going on (DH 299). But once Luna is taken by a group of Death Eaters, Mr. Lovegood is forced to attack Harry publicly in his paper (DH 419).

So another means is adopted to get the truth out— and Potterwatch, a radio program, is born (DH 437). This underground source of intelligence deserves more attention that we typically give it. Complete with code names, secret locations, and magical passwords, the makers of Potterwatch used every spy craft tool at their disposal to counteract Voldemort’s Daily Prophet propaganda.

Guess the man behind the curtain…er, I mean, code name:

Royal

Rapier

River

Romulus

What password do Ron, Harry, and Hermione use to listen to their first Potterwatch?*

Potterwatch Quotes (Courtesy of the Harry Potter Lexicon):

“. . . [we] apologize for our temporary absence from the airwaves, which was due to a number of house calls in our area by those charming Death Eaters.”

“ . . .  it’s one short step from ‘Wizards first’ to ‘Purebloods first,’ and then to ‘Death Eaters.’ . . . We’re all human, aren’t we? Every human life is worth the same, and worth saving.”
Royal

“I suppose it helps, when escaping from Death Eaters, if you’ve got a sixteen-foot-high half brother?” . . .
“It would tend to give you an edge . . . ”
River and Romulus discussing Hagrid’s escape from arrest

 

*Answers will be revealed on tomorrow’s blog!

Answers: Types of Spies

Harry Potter characters
Yesterday, we asked you to name Harry Potter characters that fit into the five Types of Spies that 4th century theorist Sun Tzu devised. Here are our answers!

1) Local Inhabitants – i.e. people who are in the right places at the right times to observe what’s happening and report back to their handlers.

Mrs. Figg – She used her location near the Dursleys to keep an eye on Harry Potter for Dumbledore

Tom – The innkeeper at the Leaky Cauldron, Tom often spied on Harry and his friends for Cornelius Fudge

Mrs. Norris – Ok, so a cat is not typically a spy, but Mrs. Norris made a point of nosing around Hogwarts to report back to Fudge

2) Government Officials who can be persuaded to switch their loyalties

Pius Thicknius – He’s not the most well-known character, but thanks to an Imperius Curse, he became Voldemort’s puppet as the Prime Minister.

Kingsley Shacklebolt – Once it was clear that the Ministry of Magic had lost its way, Kingsley Shacklebolt quickly affirmed his loyalty to Dumbledore.

3) Enemy Spies who can be persuaded to become double agents

Severus Snape – Snape is the most obvious example of a double agent in Harry Potter. Lily’s death was more than enough to persuade him to work as a double agent.

4) Spies who conduct acts of espionage to deceive the enemy

Severus Snape – Once again, Snape proves himself to be an EXCELLENT spy by deceiving Voldemort every step of the way.

Peeves – Peeves helps Fred and George Weasley wreak havoc in the Order of the Phoenix in order to combat Umbridge’s horrible regime.

5) Spies sent behind enemy lines that return with information

Remus Lupin- Although the task was distasteful, Lupin went to spy among the werewolves.

Hagrid – Similarly, Hagrid used his half-giant status to try to get information and support from the giants.

Did you come up with better answers? Tell us in the comments! 

Quiz: Types of Spies

Order of the Phoenix still

Well, we’ve done it. We’ve made it through ORDER OF THE PHOENIX in its entirety using weekly quizzes. Don’t worry, there’s plenty more where they came from! For now, however, we’re going to focus more closely on the SPIES, SPYCRAFT, and SPY GADGETS in the Harry Potter series. If you’ve already purchased the book, the upcoming quizzes will align with Part II: The Art of Spying in the Wizarding and Muggle Worlds.

Sit tight, grab a broomstick, and follow us on another wild ride through Harry Potter and the Art of Spying!

Sun-Tzu Quote

According to a famous 4th century Chinese general named Sun-Tzu, there are five types of spies. Can you name a Harry Potter character for each?

1) Local Inhabitants – i.e. people who are in the right places at the right times to observe what’s happening and report back to their handlers.

2) Government Officials who can be persuaded to switch their loyalties

3) Enemy Spies who can be persuaded to become double agents

4) Spies who conduct acts of espionage to deceive the enemy

5) Spies sent behind enemy lines that return with information

Tomorrow, we’ll reveal which characters we think fit into each category. Stop back to see if you could name them all!

Happy Birthday Daniel Radcliffe!

Make A Wish Harry

In honor of Daniel Radcliffe’s 25th birthday, we’ve put together some trivia questions to see how much you know about the Chosen One. Answers will be posted late tonight!

1. How tall is Daniel?

2. He has decided that his height does not bother him. Why?

3.  What is his favorite dessert?

4. Which Harry Potter book is Daniel’s favorite?

5. What charities does Dan support?

6. What do his parents do?

7. Is he open to reprising his role as Harry?

8. Dan is also a writer. What did he have published in 2007?

9. Where does he live now?

10. What are some of Dan’s current projects?

 

For more Harry Potter trivia, check out Emma Watson’s Birthday Quiz, or our recent quiz about Hagrid in the Order of the Phoenix!

Answers: Covers, Classified Docs, and Counterjinxes

Sirius in Fire

Check out the answers to yesterday’s quiz! Let us know how you did in the comments!

1. What document is created at the end of the meeting at The Hog’s Head that is considered classified and not to be disclosed to anyone?

The sign-up sheet

2. What name do the students choose for this subversive organization?

Dumbledore’s Army

3. In order to not look too suspicious, the kids leave the meeting in what manner?

By two’s and three’s

4. Educational Decree No. 24 related to meetings and gatherings of students.  Why was it passed?

Because Umbridge found out about the meeting at the Hog’s Head

5. At first the members of Dumbledore’s Army think they have a spy in their midst, but Hermione knows it’s not true because of what countermeasure she used?

She employed a SNEAK jinx

6. When Hedwig returns with a message from Sirius, something has happened to the owl.  What does intelligent analyst Harry conclude?

 That someone tried to intercept the letter

7. What open-code message did Harry receive from Sirius and what did in mean?

“Today, same time, same place” – at the fire like last time

8. Sirius tells Harry that the Hog’s Head was not a secure meeting place for the students.  Where should they have met, and why?

The Three Broomsticks, because it is more crowded making it easier to meet covertly without being overheard.

9. What is one of the places considered for the DA to meet that is rejected while talking to Sirius?

The Shrieking Shack.

10. When he’s trying to talk to Harry Sirius has to leave the fire because his cover is blown.  How do we know this?

Umbridge’s hand tries to grab his head

More Literary References in HARRY POTTER AND THE ART OF SPYING Chapter Titles!

read-between-lines

Last week, we revealed the hidden meaning in the five chapter titles from Harry Potter and the Art of Spying. Here are five more!

Chapter 10  Strangers in a Strange Land—An Introduction to Luna Lovegood

Stranger in a Strange Land is a 1961science fiction novel by American author Robert A. Heinlein. It tells the story of Valentine Michael Smith, a human who comes to Earth in early adulthood after being born on the planet Mars and raised by Martians. The novel explores his interaction with—and eventual transformation of—terrestrial culture.

 Check out the book that was banned in Texas for its adult themes:

Chapter 12  Professor Umbridge—Liar, Traitor, Soldier, Spy

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy is a 1974 spy novel by British author John le Carré, featuring George Smiley. Smiley is a taciturn, middle-aged intelligence officer who has been forced into retirement. He is recalled to hunt down a Soviet mole in the “Circus”, the highest echelon of the British Secret Intelligence Service.

 Did you see the movie in 2011?

Chapter 13  Cruel and Unusual Punishment, or, Getting to the Point about Lying

Cruel and unusual punishment is a phrase describing punishment which is considered unacceptable due to the suffering, pain, or humiliation it inflicts on the person subjected to it.  . . . These exact words were first used in the English Bill of Rights in 1689, and later were also adopted by the Eighth Amendment to the United States Constitution (ratified 1791) and British Leeward IslandsSlavery Amelioration Act (1798).         

 

Chapter 16  Harry Takes the Lead—A Not-So-Secret Meeting—We Band of Brothers (and Sisters)

“We band of brothers” comes from William Shakespeare‘s play Henry V in Act IV Scene iii 18–67, where Henry V delivers his famous  St. Crispin’s Day speech wherein he states:

We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother;

 See the whole (epic) speech 

Chapter 19  Sticks and Stones May Break My Bones . . . But Your Temper May Get You Banned from Quidditch

“Sticks and stones will break my bones” is an English language children’s rhyme. It persuades the child victim of name-calling to ignore the taunt, to refrain from physical retaliation, and to remain calm and good-natured:

Sticks and stones will break my bones
But words will never harm me.

Click here for more hidden references!

Monday Madness: Harry Potter Trivia

Learn what makes a good spy as you explore the world of Harry Potter from an all-new perspective! Beginning today, we will be hosting a weekly trivia game. Each Monday, we will release 10 trivia questions about the spies in the Harry Potter series with information about where to find the answers.

Every Tuesday, we’ll release the answers to our trivia questions, so be sure to check back in to see if you were right!

For now, we’ll start from the end of the series with 10 questions about where it all began — number 4 Privet Drive.

  1. What is it that makes number four, Privet Drive a safe house for Harry? OP 836
  2. What was the cover story the Dursley told Harry as to how his parents had died?SS 11
  3. What is the name of the school that Harry supposedly attended, used as a cover story by the Dursley’s for their neighbors? OP 11
  4. Name the squib assigned as a sleeper agent to look after Harry when he was at the Dursley’s house over the summer. OP 20
  5. Name two open-source mediums Harry uses in the summer between his fourth and fifth year at Hogwarts to determine if Sirius Black has been captured. OP 2, 8
  6. Who was assigned to watch over Harry at the beginning of book 5 but left his post because of a “very good business opportunity”? OP 23
  7. Name the special communication device that is on Harry at all times. OP 380
  8. What is the name of the security squad that comes to take Harry away from Privet Drive after being attacked by the dementors? OP 42
  9. Before Harry is taken from the Dursley’s in book 5 he is asked a security question to make sure he is the real Harry Potter – what was he asked? OP 45
  10.   In Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Tonks used disinformation to get the Dursley’s to leave their home on the evening that Harry is rescued from the home. What did the Dursleys think they were leaving for? OP 48

Do you have any great Harry Potter trivia? Let us know! Answers are in the next blog.