11 Harry Potter Quotes About Equality That Will Inspire You To Do Good In The World

I've been mulling over a rather contentious idea for months now, and at this point I am completely convinced — Dobby the house elf is the heart and soul of the Harry Potter series. From his tumultuous appearance in the kitchen at Number 4 Privet Drive, to the courageous rescue from Malfoy manner that ultimately cost him his life, Dobby devoted himself heart and soul to justice, love, and friendship.

When Harry was flailing in the face of the second task of the Triwizard Tournament, Dobby risked everything to steal enough gillyweed from Professor Snape's store and save the day. When Winky was sacked unjustly by Bartemius Crouch, Dobby sought her out and secured employment for himself and his cousin, tending to her as she struggled through the loss of her family and a burgeoning butterbeer addiction. Dobby died a hero, and a free elf, but even Dobby never advocated for house elf rights.

The question of equality is raised time and time again within the seven Harry Potter books; and yet, despite Voldemort's downfall at the close of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, house elves remain enslaved. The Potterverse, like our own world, remains racked with structural injustice, even in the face of exemplary acts of heroism. So, as we muggles struggle through ongoing battles with inequalities of all shapes and sizes, why not look to Harry Potter for a little inspiration. After all, we may not have magic, but we can fight for what is right, just like Dumbledore would want us to.

1. "I'd say that it's one short step from 'Wizards first' to 'Purebloods first,' then to 'Death Eaters...We're all human, aren't we? Every human life is worth the same, and worth saving."

— Kingsley Shacklebolt, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

2. "If you want to know what a man's like, take a good look at how he treats his inferiors, not his equals"

— Sirius Black, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

3. "Differences of heart and language are nothing at all if our aims are identical and our hearts are open"

— Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

4. "Oh for heaven’s sake! Listen to me, all of you! You’ve got just as much right as wizards to be unhappy! You’ve got the right to wages and holidays and proper clothes, you don’t have to do everything you’re told"

— Hermione Granger, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

5. "It matters not what someone is born, but what they grow to be."

— Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

6. "If you’re holding out for universal popularity, I’m afraid you will be in this cabin for a very long time."

— Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

7. "We are only as strong as we are united, as weak as we are divided."

— Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

8. "I'm hoping to do some good in the world!"

— Hermione Granger, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

9. "It is important to fight and fight again, and keep fighting, for only then can evil be kept at bay though never quite eradicated."

— Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

10. "Remember, if the time should come when you have to make a choice between what is right, and what is easy, remember what happened to a boy who was good, and kind, and brave, because he strayed across the path of Lord Voldemort"

— Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

11. "It’s people like you...who prop up rotten and unjust systems, just because they’re too lazy..."

— Hermione Granger, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

Image: Warner Bros.; Giphy (11)