The Rise Of Muggles

David Liss notices that popular culture no longer depicts magic as a learned art:

Magic has gone from being an open system to a closed one. Their massive popularity make the Harry Potter novels and films the most glaring example, but it’s everywhere, and has been for decades now: TV shows like Charmed and Wizards of Waverly Place, books like those of Laurell K. Hamilton and Charlaine Harris. More often than not, magical practitioners are born, not made. Magic is an exclusive club. You can watch and be envious, but you can’t join.

Alyssa Rosenberg connects this development to contemporary understandings of power and powerlessness.