Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Lupin, James, or Dumbledore?

So, this is making the rounds on Facebook today:



It's a wonderful occasion for geeky Myers-Briggs conversations, but it's flawed. Presumably it's a silly thing to take seriously, but still, I have to register my sincere doubt that the person who put this together really tried to create, through closely examining the HP canon, the sort of test questions which would line up the characters with various MB scores. True, I won't deny that some of the descriptions are absolute genius. Neville as ISFJ, Lupin as INFJ, Luna as INFP, and Sirius as ENTP all seem particularly truthful. But let's focus on the Trio. Hermione as INTP? Sorry, that last indicator is completely unsubstantiated by the canon; Hermione likes structure, and likes everyone to know she likes structure. If any one of the main characters is a true INTJ "strategist," it's surely Hermione, not Malfoy (and really, sticking him in there is probably more fan-wank than anything else). Harry as an ISTP "craftsman"? Some of that works, but again, the issue of structure comes up: Harry's resolute determination to do things as he has figured out on his own to do them, the consequences or the opinions of others be damned, actually makes him rather more an ISTJ Snape-type figure (which, I suppose, means that we could use MB testing to explain the psychological mechanics which led them, as characters, to hate each other so much). Ron's description as an ENFP actually works, I think, though arguably he's more like his Weasley brothers and his sister in being more oriented to sense (S) than intuition (N); yes, Ron is sometimes a big picture person, but just as often he gets hung up (like Harry) on the trees rather than the forest--and don't forget Ron's frequent bottom-line pragmatism, which constantly gets on Hermione's nerves. So, yeah: a fun bit of random geek-bait to argue over, but flawed.

And me? I tend to score as an ENFJ, but sometimes the INFJ comes out, and occasionally an ENTJ. So supposedly I'm mostly an Albus Dumbledore (which is good for university teachers, I suppose), and sometimes a Remus Lupin (also good), but then sometimes a James Potter smart-ass. Hopefully I can keep that last one under wraps while advising students, and only let him out during faculty meetings.

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