The first day I entered a classroom in an all girls college, I wondered if I’ll meet a Hermione here. As my lectures unfolded into a curriculum, I added, “Raise these Hermiones” to the list. Over the years, we’ve grown seeing you transform into the brightest witch of the age and here we are, stuck with our desperate rendition of you, in the muggle world.
Our world is ruthless. We’re young, dark-skinned, acne-faced, plump, feminist Hermiones with body hair, PCOD, dealing with the impervious who undermine our abilities, intelligence and opinion every single day. Fighting is not something one can opt for. Our Hermiones cook three meals a day, study for their undergraduate degree, raise a child, freelance, work from home, all with only two hands and no wands.
We don’t have any spells here, except for ‘we’ve got to hit it harder,’ that we sing ourselves to sleep every night. But you give us hope, Hermione. The women from my tribe are becoming you. They’re growing from the cracks, like the flowers out of the concrete, becoming fierce, unapologetic, swallowing morsels of the sun every day. You’ve taught us to know our rights, know that we must do a greater good, to make a difference. That we have a voice and a mind brighter than gold.
And we’re learning every day. To trust our inner instinct, and passionate creativity, to be courageous, to stand for truth even if it means losing friends, to stand for those who are looking up to us. To be a woman who refuses to dumb down, no matter how dark the forces are.
As a teacher, I’m facilitating that mischief, risks, and cleverness that these young ones should aspire, keeping cracks open for them to save the world, with or without Harry and Ron. I tell them there is always a library, for every doubt. That they must fight for everything they believe in, and now that the world is losing more magic than ever, fight harder.
On other days, I'm only trying to successfully transfigure into a cat.
A Professor ~ Isha Yadav (@ishalogue)