The Instigator
Riversidegirl4life
Pro (for)
Winning
20 Points
The Contender
xxxallyssarulezxxx
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

Harry Potter is better than the Twilight saga.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 4 votes the winner is...
Riversidegirl4life
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/5/2012 Category: Entertainment
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,906 times Debate No: 20889
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (17)
Votes (4)

 

Riversidegirl4life

Pro

First round is acceptance. These are the rules:

1. Debators cannot make empty opinions, such as "twilight is better because it is awesome and harry potter sucks". Although, backed up opinions are encouraged, such as "I think Harry Potter is better than twilight because it has a wider age range".

2. This debate is about the books and NOT THE MOVIES! This makes arguments such as "the special effects are better" invalid, and therefore any arguments relating to the actors or film writers are irrelevant and invalid.

3. Proper grammar and spelling should be used.

4. Please back up arguments with quotes from the book, or just very well explained arguments. For example, a comment such as "Harry Potter is innapropriate because Voldemort gets turned on by torturing people!" is invalid, as this is not at any point during the books, mentioned.

Thanks, please accept!!
xxxallyssarulezxxx

Con

I accept and submit to all rules.

My only request of my opponent is to clarify the use of the term "better". In what sense and to what degree are we going to argue why either series is "better" than the other? An example to demonstrate my concern: say I argue (hypothetically) that the Twilight Series has a higher grossing than the Harry Potter Series, therefore the Twilight series is better than the Harry Potter one. However, you rebut with semantics by saying that "better", in actuality, refers to superior quality in writing. So, before you initiate the argument, I ask that you define the word "better" that we will be arguing with.

I wish my opponent good luck because she will certainly need it ;)
Debate Round No. 1
Riversidegirl4life

Pro

When I say better, I mean better in the sense of plot, characters, development, messages, etc. On with the argument.
The first reason why I believe that the Harry Potter series is better than the Twilight series, is the characters. It is only fair to compare the two main female characters, and the two main male characters from each series.
I present to you, Hermione Granger.
In the Harry Potter series, Hermione is presented as a confident, strong minded, intelligent girl, who sets a great example for young female readers. For example, in the first three books Hermione shows nothing less than bravery, level-headedness, and utmost bravery for her new friends. She knows how to stand up for herself when bullied, as shown in Chamber of Secrets. Although she has male friends, she in no way relies on them at any point during the books (they often rely on her, in fact!) and is always fully capable of taking care of herself. Although she does battle with Harry and Ron, they never need to protect her or save her; she is shown as equal.

Bella Swan, the lead female character from the Twilight saga shows quite a different personality altogether. From early in the book, Bella needs to be saved by Edward, and this requiring for a man to save and protect her is a continuous theme throughout the books. She shows both physical and emotional weakness through the story, and she evidently needs Edward to aid her in both aspects. This is sexist, and although young girls may see this as "chivalrous", it is subconsciously showing that the girl is weak, and a man must rescue and protect her.
In New Moon, Edward breaks up with Bella. It is only natural for her to be heartbroken, but what I found distressing while reading it is how she consciously puts herself in danger to "see" him again. (In one instance I believe she wants to dive off a cliff) This has blatant suicidal overtones, and shows that Bella is unhealthily obsessed with Edward (and yet this is still perceived as the perfect relationship!)

Girls reading Harry Potter see a strong independent lead female who thinks and defends for herself, whereas when reading Twilight, they see a lead female who requires a man to protect her and make all of her decisions, and is incapable of standing up for herself.

Now, progressing on to the lead characters. Edward Cullen is a vampire who lures a teenage girl into a relationship with him. Throughout the relationship he makes all the important decisions, such as what she should do, who should protect her, where she should go and when they should break up. This is domineering and disrespectful, and yet he is perceived as the perfect boyfriend!? Thanks to Twilight's influence, girls will be looking for a boyfriend who is like Edward- selfish and dominating. This is just a bad example for girls reading the book.
In New Moon he leaves her without giving her a full explaination, which shows a great deal of disrespect for his girlfriend, and shows how he believes he is the decision maker in this relationship. Isn't that sort of attitude a tad 1950s?
In New Moon, Edward gets his family to protect Bella, without even asking her if this would be okay! This shows how he believes that his girlfriend is too weak to defend herself. Even though she is just a human and Edward is a strong, fast Vampire, this just emphasizes the fact that he is better than her; and, doesn't making the man excessively stronger and faster than the girl seem a little sexist? And after all, he is shown as the "perfect boyfriend". I don't want to sound like an extreme feminist, but Edward is so "chivalrous" that he doesn't allow Bella to do anything herself! As the book's message includes showing how perfect Edward is, Stephanie Meyer is simply showing that the perfect boyfriend is dominating, sexist, presumptuous and more powerful than the girl.
Harry Potter shows quite a different personality regarding women altogether. In the Harry Potter books, he shows a great deal of respect for Hermione's intellect, and never tries to protect her or fight for her. This is shown for example, near the end of Philosopher's Stone when Harry tells Hermione that she is much cleverer than he is, and feels unhappy facing Voldemort without her. He doesn't try to win her over, but sees her as a friend who is equal to himself. Throughout the series, Harry discusses his problems openly with Hermione, and they try to come to a solution together. In Twilight, Ed makes the decisions himself and rarely has a conversation with Bella where he takes her opinions into account. In Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Harry gets his first girlfriend, Cho Chang. Unlike Edward, however, he didn't just get the perfect girl at the snap of his fingers- but he fought for her for an entire year! This shows a great deal of respect for girls on his behalf.

I conclude that the lead characters in HP are much better role models than those in Twilight.
(I will present more arguments in future rounds)
xxxallyssarulezxxx

Con

Q1a: "It is only fair to compare the two main female characters, and the two main male characters from each series.
I present to you, Hermione Granger." Not necessarily, as neither series has exactly the same purpose, therefore the character's purposes will differ. Hermione is presented as a "confident, strong minded, intelligent girl...", but creating a strong character does not always equate to an excellent read. In George Orwell's '1984', Winston Smith was a horribly weak character, yet if he wasn't then 1984 could not have been written. Some would argue that 1984 was poorly written (in terms of writing inducing excitement), but the ideas involved (double-think, totalitarian governments) make the book a classic[1], and this is WITH a weak lead character. Whilst Bella may not be as "strong minded" in comparison to Hermione, her insecurity is paramount for the Twilight series as it could not demonstrate its points without a weak character (the actual points I will get to later).

Q1b: "Although she does battle with Harry and Ron, they never need to protect her or save her; she is shown as equal."

So relying on men for "protection" automatically makes a girl "[un]equal"? Everyone needs protection sometimes, even some of the strongest men. For example, a man breaks into a married couples' home late at night and attacks a sleeping man. The sleeping man's wife wakes up and fires a gun at the attacker; does this make the sleeping man unequal for requiring protection? You have exaggerated a common criticism of Twilight: Bella is weak and sometimes requires protection. Even if she required constant protection (because she is mentally weak), that does not equate to her being unequal to anyone else. Twilight projects Bella as being weak, NOT unequal.

Q2a: "Bella needs to be saved by Edward, and this requiring for a man to save and protect her is a continuous theme throughout the books. She shows both physical and emotional weakness through the story, and she evidently needs Edward to aid her in both aspects. This is sexist, and although young girls may see this as "chivalrous", it is subconsciously showing that the girl is weak, and a man must rescue and protect her."

This argument appears to be questioning the role model values of both lead female characters. Yes, Bella is weak minded, but don't rush to the conclusion that because Bella is weak, Myer in insinuating that all girls are weak and require protection. As previously stated, Myer has implemented such character to demonstrate a point/points.

Q2b: Since you've attacked Bella for being a poor role model, allow me to return fire on Hermione. Hermione is "a confident, strong minded, intelligent girl…"; however, her strong sense of independence should be FAR more of a detriment than it is. NEVER is the Harry Potter series does Hermione get in trouble for being what can only be described as disgustingly stubborn, which is very unrealistic. In fact, Rowling always depicts this stubbornness as being a wonderful virtue and ensures Hermione's lines are witty (and as a result, very attractive). There is a fine line between being independent and stubborn, and Hermione constantly barges her foot over the line in apparent ‘role-model success'.

Q3: "Edward breaks up with Bella. It is only natural for her to be heartbroken, but what I found distressing while reading it is how she consciously puts herself in danger to "see" him again. (In one instance I believe she wants to dive off a cliff) This has blatant suicidal overtones, and shows that Bella is unhealthily obsessed with Edward (and yet this is still perceived as the perfect relationship!)"

On the contrary, Twilight works almost exclusively as a campaign for abstinence and the evilness of male hormones. The story treats sexuality as a disease. There is a boy who is trouble because he can't hold back his urges for a girl. There is a girl, whom can't help being attracted to that boy, so shown as weak-minded. Twilight demonstrates all the nasty, vapid and horrors of ‘teenage love' and portrays them as such.

C: Looking through the rest of your argument, you attack other characters for being poor role models, hence your conclusion: "I conclude that the lead characters in HP are much better role models than those in Twilight". I have argued why good role models do not always equate to a good novel series, ESPECIALLY when the purpose of the series requires poor role models. You have argued under the assumption that all good novel (and series) must require good role models in order to be well written, which is a false premise. It would be horribly ineffective and counter-productive for Twilight to have good role models in its lead/main characters, whilst Harry Potter requires these excellent role models. Therefore, neither series can be adjudged "better" than the other based on this point.

[1] http://us.penguingroup.com...
Debate Round No. 2
Riversidegirl4life

Pro

It seems as though you are explaining that the fact that Twilight has weak characters make it a better book than Harry Potter, which is a poorer book. (I deduce this as this is a comparison debate and not an attack at either series)
Having a weak character in a book can definitely create friction which makes for a great story, as you expressed with you George Orwell example. The Noughts and Crosses series, however, has weak characters such as Jude McGreggor who is racist and violent- but what makes Noughts and Crosses a great series is that he is juxtaposed with good characters, as every series should be. You have, weak characters and strong characters- who, when placed together in a story create conflict- but having more weak characters than strong ones just gives you the impression that the weak ones were intended to be good. This is true in Stephanie Meyer's case, as she describes Edward as chivalrous and the perfect boyfriend, and, like I mentioned before, she clearly has no idea that her "perfect boyfriend" is sexist and disrespectful. I fully understand when a character is created to be weak, (who wants a whole book of princesses and princes?) obviously weak characters make the book- but when the "strong character" is actually extremely weak- there's something wrong.

Your next point is regarding protection "So relying on men for "protection" automatically makes a girl "[un]equal"? Everyone needs protection sometimes"
I fully agree that protecting someone does not make them unequal, but when Bella never protects herself and she is constantly protected by either Edward or his family, it does seem a little sexist and unequal.

You have also attacked Hermione as being almost "too stubborn" and how it should be more of a hindrance throughout the series.
" NEVER is the Harry Potter series does Hermione get in trouble for being what can only be described as disgustingly stubborn, which is very unrealistic. In fact, Rowling always depicts this stubbornness as being a wonderful virtue and ensures Hermione's lines are witty (and as a result, very attractive). There is a fine line between being independent and stubborn, and Hermione constantly barges her foot over the line in apparent ‘role-model success"
Firstly I'd like to rebut your point that she "Never.... gets in trouble for being... stubborn". This is blatantly untrue. In the very first book, Hermione goes looking for the troll in the dungeon under the belief she could handle it herself- and she nearly gets killed. This is an example of her getting in trouble for her stubbornness, another is when Gryffindor has points deducted from it when Hermione shouts out during a lesson regarding were-wolves. (1) She also gets in trouble with her friend Luna Lovegood, when she blatantly and quite rudely criticise her father's magazine, the Quibbler. These are a mere three examples of her getting in trouble for her stubbornness, and because of these it is evident that being stubborn and gabby is not something Rowling promotes, but rather places as a fault of Hermione's.

Thank you for your well structured debate. As we proceed I'd like to urge you to give some more arguments as to why Twilight is better than Harry Potter.

http://en.wikipedia.org...
xxxallyssarulezxxx

Con

I thank my opponent for sustaining the discussion thus far and urge her not to fret as I have included some new arguments as to why Twilight is better than Harry Potter :)

“(I deduce this as this is a comparison debate and not an attack at either series)” – When arguing why either series is better, there is one possible two method: showing that your series has something that the other does not. “An attack” on the other series is necessary to demonstrate a lacking of substance/quality (or whatever lacking there is). Of course, if you disagree with any of this then I urge you to present other methods of determining which series is better.

“but having more weak characters than strong ones just gives you the impression that the weak ones were intended to be good. This is true in Stephanie Meyer's case, as she describes Edward as chivalrous and the perfect boyfriend” Have you ever considered Myer’s “perfect boyfriend” a mockery of the concept ‘the perfect boyfriend’? Also, is “perfect boyfriend” a direct quote, or have you deduced this with your own subjective interpretation?

“obviously weak characters make the book- but when the "strong character" is actually extremely weak- there's something wrong.” Again, Edward is portrayed like that in order to demonstrate a point: there is no perfect boyfriend. As “strong” as he is, he is just as weak. Edward’s existence is satire of the “perfect boyfriend”.

“I fully agree that protecting someone does not make them unequal, but when Bella never protects herself and she is constantly protected by either Edward or his family, it does seem a little sexist and unequal.” While Bella seems to be weaker than most female characters, she is required to be weak in order for Edward to be “strong” for her. Her ‘weakness’ is merely a clever plot device, and is again satire mocking the perception that all women need men in order to be safe. The relationships are poor and flawed because that was the intention of Myer’s: to show that the ‘dream relationship’ is not so as a boyfriend can not be perfect even when a girl is horribly weak.


I wish to retract my argument about “Hermione never getting into trouble for being stubborn”, seeing as you have unquestionably demolished my argument.

Twilight campaigns against promiscuity


Twilight brings up the serious issue of ‘sex before marriage’. Edward is adamant on waiting, so Bella and Edward do wait until they marry. It is an excellent message to teens everywhere: it’s okay to say no and wait for/with for that special person. To be honest, I’m not sure if Harry Potter addresses this issue, but I don’t remember reading about it.

Sparkling vampires was an innovation


Meyer came up with the idea to make vampires sparkle, giving them a new dimension. The sparkling skin as being “alluring” -- It’s supposed to enchant their prey and draw them in. This idea is not copied from anywhere else and is totally unique to the Twilight series. Conversely, Harry Potter has wizards, witches, wands, giant spiders and an array of other things that have all been done before.

Twilight is one of the few series designed for females

By default, most fictitious novels/series are will cater to a male audience. Taking a harder route (writing for females) shows that Meyer has the skill and courage to devote her work to a less known audience. Because the work was harder to produce, in a sense, the Twilight series is better than the Harry Potter series.

Debate Round No. 3
Riversidegirl4life

Pro

We seem to have a strong argument over whether the characters in Twilight are deliberately weak or not. I still withhold my opinion that Stephanie Meyer intended these characters to be weak, but I think it is only appropriate to agree to disagree on this point.You explain how Twilight is against promiscuity, and Harry Potter doesn't explore these messages. It's true, as Harry Potter is aimed at a younger fan base, it is not appropriate, and totally irrelevant to the story line. Although Harry Potter does not explore this single issue, it shouldn't be assumed that no issues are explored at all.

Harry Potter explores the subject of racism and discrimination
Racism- hatred or intolerance of another race or other races.[1]
In Harry Potter, racism is deeply explored and is shown how it is evil, and overcoming it is good. The main villain, Lord Voldemort, is adminant that pure-blooded wizards are superior to half blooded wizards, derogitarily reffered to as "mud-bloods". The death eaters share this beleif, and the Order of the Phoenix aim to overpower Voldemort, with the aim of equality for all. Hermione, for example, is bullied for having muggle parents. Although she is not "pure blood", she is an amazing witch with outstanding magical skill, showing that no matter what race you are- you can be whoever you want to be. Harry Potter strongly promotes fighting racism.

Harry Potter promotes undying loyalty to your friends, and how important friendship is
Throughout the Harry Potter series, the importance of friendship is something which is really enforced. Not only to Ron, Harry and Hermione stick together due to their immense loyalty, but many other characters show strong frienship throughout the series. Neville Longbottom, for example, shows great responsibility and love for his friends when he attempts to protect them from danger in the Philosopher's Stone. As Albus Dumbledore said to him, "It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to your enemies, but a great deal more to stand up to your friends." Through the series, Harry progressively creates new bonds with characters, and when he forms Dumbledore's Army his friends are adiment to stick with him until the very end. This shows a great deal of loyalty and really promotes that to the readers.
Twilight on the other hand, does not promote loyalty and friendship at all, quite the opposite actually. Here are some examples:

1. Bella is extremely rude and catty about nice people who try to be her friend. For example, she says ""Mike, who was taking on the qualities of a golden retriever" (30)" about a friendly guy who was just trying to befriend her, and she says, about Eric, ""a gangly boy with skin problems and hair as black as an oil slick . . . he looked like the overly helpful, chess club type""
I understand if Bella said that about Mike, if he was being overly enthusiastic, but this is never written about in the book so it seems like Bella is just being over judgemental.
2. Although she does develop several aquaintances in the first book, Bella pretty much abandons them as soon as she has a boyfriend! After hooking up with Edward, she makes little effort to maintain her friendships and only sits with them at lunch when Edward is not around! It seems like Meyer is unable of maintaining one frienship throughout the series. Although Bella and Alice do develop a friendship, if Edward and her broke up it seems very unlikely that either Bella or Alice would aim to maintain that relationship, and they were probably just friends because it was convenient.
3. I move on to Jacob Black. When Bella moves to Forks, we find that she has been friends with Jacob Black for a while, although she is not very friendly towards him at all. Through the series, Bella only really starts paying attention to the guys when she's interested in something romantic! How selfish is that? It's like, frienships only matter if they have the potential of becoming romantic.

Harry Potter shows us there is good and evil in all of us
In Twilight, there are just good guys and bad guys, but Harry Potter shows us that good and evil lives in all of us. As Sirius Black says, "We've all got both light and dark inside us. What matters is the part we choose to act on. That's who we really are."
Every good character has a dark side to them, and vice versa, but, as Sirius Black states, the good characters have chosen to act upon the good inside of them. This shows how indepth the characters are, and how not only do they fight a war with eachother but on many occasion they fight a war within themselves. Even Ron Weasley, Harry's most loyal friend, leaves him and Hermione in Deathly Hallows. This is realistic and painful for the reader, to see Ron acting on his dark side, but Ron's loyalty returns when he comes back and saves Harry's life.

And yeah, maybe Harry Potter fails to inform teenagers about premarital sex, but it sure does promote some amazing messages that will always stay with the series' faithful readrs.
xxxallyssarulezxxx

Con

I genuinely thank my opponent for arguing at every given interval and for posing testing, civil arguments. Riversidegirl4life, I find it quite amazing that a 14 year old girl can sustain such a quality argument; you are an amazing credit to yourself.

I’m going to be brutally honest: I despise Twilight. Not only is it a poorly written series, but the underlying messages are awful and prey on the often vulnerable teenage mind. Before this debate began, I had never read any Twilight novels. At this very moment, I have not read the whole series, but have been bitterly disappointed with what I’ve read so far. Stephanie Meyer did not intend any of the characters to be weak so as to convey a message, on the stark contrary, her “dream based” series was based on normal circumstances; Meyer whole-heartedly believes that girls act like Bella and require men in their lives. I fathom this is due to her Mormon background (which teaches such gender roles).

I tried to argue for Twilight purely to see if there was an argument for Twilight being better than Harry Potter. What I’ve concluded, is that both have different agendas. However, relative to literary merits, Twilight is horribly incompetent. Some examples: there is an overwhelming repetition of words (“scowl”, “grimaced” and “perfect” caught my eye more than they should have), some of the lesser characters are merely plot devices (Sue Clearwater gets killed off in New Moon because she is no longer required to aid the plot) and Twilight, indisputably, is superficial. Bella only likes the creatures (Jacob and Edward) for their beauty, and the creatures only like Bella for her beauty. According, true love is only skin deep.

Conversely, Harry Potter teaches about friendship and, at least in my opinion, has better morals to Twilight. You gave a brilliant example: as Sirius Black says, "We've all got both light and dark inside us. What matters is the part we choose to act on. That's who we really are”.

Ultimately, there is no argument for not only Twilight being better than Harry Potter, but Twilight being reasonable literature too. Sure, Twilight explores teenage love angst, but it does so in a superficial and ineffective method. It seems, unfortunately, that Twilight has had success due to its mediocrity. There is no brilliant satire within her work (Meyer did not make the characters intentionally weak in a display of ingenious satire; always ask for a source or quote – this is a lie that I made up). You let me get away with that (which was the only premise I could construct any argument upon), but I’ve had my fun and willing to admit defeat.

Anyone who argues that the Twilight series contains superior work to that of the Harry Potter series is either mentally dishonest or mentally deficient.
Debate Round No. 4
17 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Mak-zie 5 years ago
Mak-zie
I would vote on this topic, but since I am so tremendously anti-twilight, it wouldn't be fair. My (imaginary) vote goes out to Pro. Con: I am still astounded as to how people can even like the Twilight series, and go even further to say they are better than Harry Potter. There is obviously no comparison: Twilight just fills the minds of children with meaningless nonsense-we need more books out there like Harry Potter.
Anyway, Harry Potter has a THEME park, so I think it's quite obvious here who wins.
Posted by kyro90 5 years ago
kyro90
Oh wow fail lolz... :P Two posts.... -_-
Posted by kyro90 5 years ago
kyro90
@Rize-Rosette, Just a love story? JUST A LOVE STORY!? Twilight is an incredible series not to mention the beautiful cast that played in their movies, So I now feel very offended that Twilight would be JUST A LOVE STORY....
Posted by kyro90 5 years ago
kyro90
@Rize-Rosette, Just a love story? JUST A LOVE STORY!? Twilight is an incredible series not to mention the beautiful cast that played in their movies, So I now feel very offended that Twilight would be JUST A LOVE STORY....
Posted by Orphan 5 years ago
Orphan
@Riza_Rosette: "simply" a love story? Racism, for instance, is as simple as black and white, no pun intended. A love story can invoke the most dynamic and delicate passions. I believe Harry Potter's more 'serious' plots involved love, in one way or another, and not racism, for instance.
Posted by Lucas123456789 5 years ago
Lucas123456789
To me they both suck
Posted by kyelmarsh 5 years ago
kyelmarsh
xxxallyssarulezxxx It was not meant literally and I said almost. So tell me in just a few words in fact lets keep it to ten. why is twilight better then Harry Potter.?
Posted by northshoredr 5 years ago
northshoredr
Both suck.
Posted by Riza_Rosette 5 years ago
Riza_Rosette
Interesting debate topic. My argument would simply be that the Harry Potter series touched on some serious issues (Racism, for instance) while Twilight is simply a love story.
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by OberHerr 5 years ago
OberHerr
Riversidegirl4lifexxxallyssarulezxxxTied
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Total points awarded:70 
Reasons for voting decision: Con conceded.
Vote Placed by 16kadams 5 years ago
16kadams
Riversidegirl4lifexxxallyssarulezxxxTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con gave up
Vote Placed by mongeese 5 years ago
mongeese
Riversidegirl4lifexxxallyssarulezxxxTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Obvious win is obvious.
Vote Placed by royalpaladin 5 years ago
royalpaladin
Riversidegirl4lifexxxallyssarulezxxxTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con admits defeat in the end.