Magic in American Culture: Fantastic Beasts Questions

Yesterday, I posted an article theorizing the answers to these questions: “Where is the American Wizarding school located? What is it called?” While writing that article, so many more questions floated to my mind’s surface, too many to include in the article I write yesterday. I therefore decided that an additional article to house these questions was in order. I really don’t have answers or even theories for these questions, so please comment! Let’s start a discussion about them!

  1. How is American Wizarding culture different from British Wizarding culture? England and Scotland certainly have existed as countries a lot longer than the United States, so when I think “culture”, I think that our neighbors on that island across the pond have a culture that is far more infused with history than our own. A great history that features a great architecture. An architecture features castles. Castles such as Hogwarts.
  2. America certainly isn’t known for castles. So what is this Wizarding school going to look like? Sadly, it doesn’t seem as though we’re going to see this school in the Fantastic Beasts movies, as J.K. Rowling tweeted that Newt doesn’t actually go there, but instead meets people who graduated from there.
  3. Different cultures dress differently. Wizarding culture (at least in Britain) features robes and pointy hats. How will the American wizards choose to dress? Will Newt Scamander (and the witches and/or wizards who travel with him) dress like American Muggles (of that time period) out of necessity, because they never know when they might run into Muggles during their travels? What about the magical folk that he meets along the way?
  4. If American Wizards do dress differently from Muggles, how different is it? British Wizarding dress appears so strange to British Muggles because it’s so dated. Old-fashioned. Muggles wore robes more commonly once upon a long time ago, but somehow wizards missed the memo that Muggles no longer wear robes in the 1990s. However, Fantastic Beasts takes places in the 1920s. Does that mean that Wizarding attire is even more dated? Do we turn the clocks back to whatever was popular a century before robes and pointy hats? Or is that particular, notably stereotypic attire of witches and wizards merely a result of a refusal to change over the centuries—not because they are merely slow when it comes to the changing fashions? (Check out this article for some more insights!)
  5. Do different cultures have different magic? I’ve never truly understood how magic works—all wands “know” the spells of old, as well as new spells as they’re invented. For example, when Snape invents “sectumsempra”, how does Harry’s wand know it when he casts it on Draco twenty years later? So in other words, do all the American wands know all the British spells that have been invented by that time period? Are spells global/universal?

Do you have any questions to add? Do you have any possible theories to answer these questions? Let’s start a discussion! I’ll add more questions/answers to the comments as I think of them too. Comment below!