Mutz polled a nationally representative sample of 1,142 Americans in 2014, and again in 2016, asking about their Harry Potter consumption, their attitudes on issues such as waterboarding, the death penalty, the treatment of Muslims and gays, and (in 2016 only) their feelings about Donald Trump on a 0-100 scale.
Party affiliation did not affect the likelihood that a person had read the Harry Potter books, the study found; Democrats, Republicans, and Independents have all read Rowling’s books in roughly equal numbers.
The study found that each Harry Potter book read lowered respondents’ evaluations of Donald Trump by roughly 2-3 points on a 100 point scale.
“This may seem small,” Mutz acknowledges, “but for someone who has read all seven books, the total impact could lower their estimation of Trump by 18 points out of 100. The size of this effect is on par with the impact of party identification on attitudes toward gays and Muslims.”
Time to read the third chapter of The Sorcerer’s Stone to my kids as inoculation against future fascism or at least one hell of a great world to play in at all ages.