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Psychologists Find a Surprising Thing Happens to Kids Who Read Harry Potter - Mic

Stashed in: Empathy, Harry Potter

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The news: Harry Potter's greatest feat might not have been defeating Voldemort, but teaching young people around the world to battle prejudice. At least that's the finding of a new paper in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology, which claims reading the Harry Potter series significantly improved young peoples' perception of stigmatized groups like immigrants, homosexuals or refugees.

The studies: The Pacific Standard broke down the three studies used in this paper.


In all three studies, the researchers credited the books with improving the readers' ability to assume the perspective of marginalized groups. They also claimed that young children, with the help of a teacher, were able to understand that Harry's frequent support of "mudbloods" was an allegory towards bigotry in real-life society.

Cool, Harry Potter teaches empathy!

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