Analysis

Even though Dumbledore, Snape, Sirius, and Lupin all stress how important it is for Harry to learn and practice Occlumency, Harry still stubbornly refuses to dedicate himself to the task of closing his mind. Harry’s vision of Voldemort’s attack on Mr. Weasley ultimately helped save Mr. Weasley’s life, and Harry doesn’t understand why he must close his mind entirely to outside influences. He assumes this is just another case of the adults in his life not wanting him to have access to sensitive information. Harry continues to attempt Occlumency only half-heartedly, since no one will tell him directly why he should take the lessons seriously. Had Dumbledore been honest with Harry from the beginning and explained the truth about Harry’s complex connection to Voldemort, Harry may have been more stringent with his Occlumency practice, and, therefore, not fallen for Voldemort’s trap. Once again, adults withhold information from children under the guise of “keeping them safe,” when, in reality, they are causing more harm than good by not being more forthcoming with information.

Despite withholding so much important information from Harry, Dumbledore proves himself to be a selfless and wise leader in Chapter 27. He takes full responsibility for the D.A. even though he had no knowledge of the existence of something called “Dumbledore’s Army.” He realizes, however, that he can escape the Ministry with far more ease than Harry can, so he takes the blame, sacrificing himself to ensure Harry’s safety. No matter how many doubts Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix raises about Dumbledore’s competency, he still remains a powerful, clever, and intensely pure force for good. His escape here is also noteworthy for the level of skill it requires. He effortlessly flies by the Minister of Magic and several other Wizards without so much as a skirmish.

Though Hogwarts has been notably fractured this year, Umbridge’s appointment as Headmaster compels the students and faculty to band together to make her life as difficult as possible. With the small exception of Umbridge’s Inquisitional Squad, all of Hogwarts’ residents are upset by the upheaval Umbridge has introduced to the school. Their indignation is both a show of general unity and a display of extreme loyalty to Dumbledore. Umbridge’s Educational Decrees are beginning to seem more and more ridiculous. She bans all issues of the Quibbler simply because Harry disputes the Ministry’s official party line in reference to Voldemort. As Hermione points out astutely, banning the magazine simply stirs up more interest in Harry’s story. Since so many students are opposed to Umbridge’s teaching methods and maniacal rules, they are more likely to seek out, read, and empathize with Harry’s words, effectively patching up some of the fracturing that has been plaguing Hogwarts.