Emma Watson: Her Magic


Georges Biard

Emma Watson at the Cannes Film Festival on May 29th, 2013.

Kathleen Ott de Vries '23

You might know Emma Watson from her role as Hermione Granger in the Harry Potter series or as Belle in Beauty and the Beast. However, it might surprise you to learn that Emma Watson is a humanitarian, activist, philanthropist, and UN Ambassador. Emma Watson was born on April 15, 1990, in Paris, France to two British lawyers. Her entire childhood was spent on developing the Harry Potter franchise, however, despite that, Watson spent five hours a day with tutors and tested highly on tests with an IQ of 138. Emma Watson not only played the gifted character Hermione Granger in the Harry Potter series, but she was also academically gifted. Emma Watson graduated from Brown University with a bachelor’s degree in English literature in 2014. Emma Watson was appointed as a U.N. Goodwill Ambassador, specifically for women, that same year. This position launched her career in gender equality and women empowerment. Emma Watson is the face and advocate of the U.N.’s  HeForShe Campaign. This campaign is designed to promote gender equality across the world, and specifically to encourage men to actively advocate for women. This campaign was met with wild success across the world, the HeForShe website showcased the participation of millions of men. Emma Watson also works to end child marriage. In 2016, she traveled to Malawi, the country with the highest rates of child marriage in the world. Before returning to London, with the collaboration of local chiefs, mothers’ groups, and religious leaders, she helped annul almost 1,500 child marriages. Emma Watson is a well-known philanthropist, in February 2018, she donated 1.4 million dollars to the Justice and Equality Fund which works to eliminate workplace harassment and discrimination. Emma Watson, in addition to being a women’s rights activist, is also an environmental activist. She is constantly advocating and supporting sustainable and environmentally conscious fashion. Emma Watson designed a fashion line called People Tree, a fair trade, environmentally friendly, sustainable fashion brand. Women are a huge part of the labor force in the world and many of these women are taken advantage of. According to the Global Estimates of Modern Slavery sponsored by the International Labour Office, 71% of victims of this modern-day slavery are women and girls. Emma Watson designed People Tree to combat this violation of women’s rights and to create an eco-friendly and sustainable fashion brand. Many people have been inspired by Emma Watson. Malala Yousafzai, the youngest recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize, says she became a feminist because of Emma Watson’s speech to the United Nations. Emma Watson continues to make a difference in the world today and she encourages and inspires others to do the same.