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Dark Arts Defense League? - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
fernwithy
fernwithy
Dark Arts Defense League?
Re-reading GoF just now, and I happened to look carefully at Rita's article about Harry being dangerous and unstable. She mentions talking to an unnamed wizard from the Dark Arts Defense League. Have we heard about that group anywhere else? I couldn't find it at the Lex.

Given that it's the Daily Prophet, I'd guess she's not talking to an underground group--I doubt a group like the Order of the Phoenix would be randomly giving interviews to the press, anyway--but it also doesn't seem to be a Ministry department. I don't remember hearing about it elsewhere, and I'm trying to decide what it is. An advocacy group, arguing for the rights of civilians to use extreme measures against Dark Wizards? A duelling club? A Defense of the Dark Arts, with Lucius as her unnamed source?

Do we have answers, or are we working with theories that are either convincing or unconvincing?
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Comments
i_autumnheart From: i_autumnheart Date: June 6th, 2007 02:10 pm (UTC) (Link)
Gilderoy Lockhart, Order of Merlin, third class, Honorary Member of the Dark Force Defence League and five times winner of Witch Weekly's Most-Charming-Smile Award
(CoS, Bloomsbury edition, p77, my bold)

Not exactly the same wording, but I'd imagine that this is the same group. Probably doesn't really help with what it actually is, though!
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 6th, 2007 02:38 pm (UTC) (Link)
Aha! Another spotting. Probably would exclude the "Defense of the Dark Arts" theory.
mrintel From: mrintel Date: June 6th, 2007 02:45 pm (UTC) (Link)
http://www.hp-lexicon.org/wizworld/organizations.html

Fifth item down. Quote: May or may not be directly affiliated with the Ministry of Magic. Lockhart was a member.

It lists the GoF passage you mentioned and the CoS entry quoted above.

Personally, I think it's a voluntary organization that Lockhart harangued himself into.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 6th, 2007 03:16 pm (UTC) (Link)
Ah, I was using the A-Z guide and didn't see it.
tree_and_leaf From: tree_and_leaf Date: June 6th, 2007 02:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
I don't think there's any information on it in canon: I assumed it was something like the Anti Fascist League or Searchlight - political pressure groups dedicated to exposing hidden far-right activity (which has at least the potential to become very paranoid and therefore unhelpful), but is not a secret or vigilante organisation.
tree_and_leaf From: tree_and_leaf Date: June 6th, 2007 02:53 pm (UTC) (Link)
http://www.searchlightmagazine.com/

And I meant Anti-Nazi League: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti-Nazi_League

Then there are splinter groups like Anti-Fascist Action, who apparently have considered violent action against (alleged) Neo-Nazis...
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 6th, 2007 03:20 pm (UTC) (Link)
That's what I was thinking sounded the most likely. Kind of a wizarding lobby group, with probably some defensive aims to it. You could see them telling people to stockpile curses, and campaigning for Crouch at the height of the war.
erised1810 From: erised1810 Date: June 6th, 2007 06:20 pm (UTC) (Link)
if theyr'e a group of dada people what'sth difference between them and the aurors?
or is rita jsut making it up. or is seh talkignaboutthe ootp and onl yallowed to clal the mby that name?
snorkackcatcher From: snorkackcatcher Date: June 6th, 2007 06:39 pm (UTC) (Link)
It's actually 'Dark Force Defence League' in both GoF (well, my copy anyway) and CoS (the Lockhart reference someobody mentioned above). From the sniffy tone of the anonymous interviewee in GoF, it does sound more like a pressure group rather than something like the Order of the Phoenix which actually goes out and does things, especially if they handed out an honorary membership to Lockhart rather than simply asking him to sign up and help defend against dark forces. Of course, it could be a holdover from the first war, or some previous war, that was once an Order-like group but has now ossified.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 6th, 2007 07:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
Ah--that happens when you post by memory rather than double-checking it. Oops. Either way.

I would think that Lockhart bragging about membership would imply that it's a legitimate group of some sort, but that it's only honorary membership...

Hmm.

That suggests that you have to do something concrete and with in-group witnesses to be a member. I could see them pursuing the famous Lockhart as a feather in their cap and being perplexed when he kept saying he was too busy to go through an initiation. Or something.
From: (Anonymous) Date: June 6th, 2007 08:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
If Lockhart's only an "honorary" member, that implies ordinary members have to have some skills, I'd assume. Maybe it's like, hmm, some kind of cross between a union and a professional trade association? Like what aurors, the wizarding equivalent of private investigators, and maybe cursebreakers like Bill join? They could have yearly conferences where they talk about the latest hexes.
ladyvorkosigan From: ladyvorkosigan Date: June 6th, 2007 08:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
If Lockhart's only an "honorary" member, that implies ordinary members have to have some skills, I'd assume. Maybe it's like, hmm, some kind of cross between a union and a professional trade association? Like what aurors, the wizarding equivalent of private investigators, and maybe cursebreakers like Bill join? They could have yearly conferences where they talk about the latest hexes.
ladyvorkosigan From: ladyvorkosigan Date: June 6th, 2007 08:51 pm (UTC) (Link)
(Oops - sorry. Forgot to log in, but then logged myself in too late, it seems).
j_lunatic From: j_lunatic Date: June 7th, 2007 11:35 am (UTC) (Link)
I was about to suggest this, but you did this more than concisely. Similarly, the Most Extraordinary Society of Potioneers Slughorn mentions probably is the counterpart organization for potion-makers, and Transfiguration Today is probably put out by a similar group interested in Transfiguration.
psychic_serpent From: psychic_serpent Date: June 6th, 2007 09:18 pm (UTC) (Link)
Sounds a bit like a lodge--might be like the Masons of the wizarding world. I'm not sure if anyone's ever been declared an honorary Mason, but you never know...
ani_bester From: ani_bester Date: June 7th, 2007 02:46 pm (UTC) (Link)
Maybe it's something like, if I'm reacalling correctly here, The Academy which is a consultant group made up of ex-FBI agents or something like that (if you ever caught the show Millennium the first season function of the fictional group was based on a real group which is IIRC called The Academy). They can send people out to help local police in a kinda none offical capacity.

Maybe it's exAurors (SP)who assit or consult for people, and if memebership is exclucive to Ex-Aurors, that would explain Gilderoy's Honorary status, and it would make sense given the kind of work he pretended to do that he might get honorary status in such a group.
From: walkerhound Date: June 11th, 2007 01:15 am (UTC) (Link)
Maybe something more along the lines of the wizarding VFW or a wizarding militia /defense force* sort of thing.

hummm or something more along the lines of the minutemen. ya know the ministry and/or fudge clams’ there doing all that can be done about X yada yada and a bunch of guy's get to gather to show how it could/should ect ect be done.

*a militia being a group of civilians forming an association totally separate from the government (in many cases assumed to be at lest philosophically opposed to the gov'). a state defense force (as there called in the US) is a legitimate government sponsored...uh...militia . fyi a number of US states still maintain state defiance forces as a seprit entity form there national guard contingent.
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