In an unexpected move, Vladimir Putin included author JK Rowling in recent comments on cancel culture. Through a televised speech, which happened this Friday, the Russian president talked about how Western countries enjoy canceling people. He gave the example of the writer of Harry Potter, who previously faced harsh criticism for statements against transgender people. And according to the president, Russia and Rowling are equally victims of circumstances.
Since the Russian invasion of Ukraine – a war that broke out in February 2022 – the country commanded by Vladimir Putin has faced various international sanctions, mainly from the United States and the European Union. “Now they are trying to cancel our country,” said the leader in his media appearance. “I am talking about the progressive discrimination of everything that has to do with Russia” (via THR).
Speaking about the culture of cancellation, Putin even compared the situation in the West with the burning of books perpetuated by the Nazis in the 1930s. However, that was not his only allusion to the literary field.
Named after JK Rowling, celebrated creator of the Wizarding World and the series of novels Harry Potter, came from the mouth of the Russian president during the same speech. Where was he going with that unusual mention? That Rowling also lies in the crosshairs of cancellation, “only because she did not meet the demands of gender rights”, in the words of Putin. But the Englishwoman does not really appreciate the apparent support of those who intervened militarily in Ukraine.
“Criticism of Western cancel culture is possibly not the best coming from those currently killing civilians for the crime of resistance,” Rowling posted on Twitter. “Or that they imprison and poison their critics.”
Attached to the tweet, the author shared a note about Alexei Navalny. He is a Russian lawyer and activist, an opponent of the Putin regime, who came close to dying of poison in 2020 and is currently serving a sentence in prison, on charges of fraud that would have been fabricated in order to silence him.
In 2019, JK Rowling caused a stir on social media for defending a British researcher who opposed people identifying with a gender other than the sex assigned to them at birth. Since then, the renowned writer has issued various statements that Internet users -even the most ardent followers of Harry Potter— perceive as manifestations of transphobia.
The entry Vladimir Putin names JK Rowling as a victim of the cancellation was first published in Cine PREMIERE.