Imagine being a lonely orphan locked up in a cupboard under the stairs all day long, suffering the abuse from your vicious aunt, uncle, and cousin.
With only your imagination at your disposal, I can only picture myself coming up with elaborate and magical day dreams to help break the monotony and pain of my situation.
One such fan has speculated that perhaps Harry Potter has created a magical world called Hogwarts to help him endure the torturous days being locked up in the cupboard. Perhaps driven to insanity, Harry imagines a half-giant named Hagrid saves him, while also revealing that he is a wizard.
Harry is taken to Hogwarts, and the rest is history. Mystical creatures, evil wizards, and classes of magic galore. Although he may feel the sturdy wood of his wand and smell the scrumptious food prepared by house elves in the Great Hall, this story is merely a means to cope with Harry's harsh reality.
As much as I wouldn't want this to be true, I could completely see this.
Surprisingly, Rowling was made aware of this particular theory, enough to even comment on it.
“In the script, when he was in the cupboard, I invented a spider named Allistor who he talked to, and he used to knick broken soldiers out of the rubbish bin, and he lined them up on the shelf – his broken army that Dudley had thrown out. He used to talk to them, and the point is that he seemed slightly mad when I wrote the first draft. When Hagrid appeared, you thought he was out of [Harry’s] imagination for a minute; that he had summoned this guy.”
So it seems the theory isn't too far off from what J.K. Rowling originally imagined!
Rowling has also said:
"I think that’s a fabulous point, and it speaks so perfectly to the truth of the books. I’ve heard it suggested to me more than once that Harry actually did go mad in the cupboard, and that everything that happened subsequently was some sort of fantasy life he developed to save himself.
While I'm perfectly fine with Dementors and Lord Voldemort not truly existing, the thought of Dobby, Potions, The Forbidden Forest, Dumbledore, and quirky Luna Lovegood being a figment of Harry's imagination makes me incredibly depressed.
Whether you believe in the speculation or not, it is a fun idea to toy around with. The mind is capable of so much, and I now know that if I find myself a prisoner of a closet space, I will make sure to imagine Hagrid swooping me up and taking me to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry .