The Wonderful Wizard Of Oz Essay

2607 words - 10 pages

People start their lives with open eyes and open hearts, but society corrupts them, turning them into shadows of what they once were. Children enter the world not judging anyone, and having no limitations; they believe anything is possible. As they grow and mature, they loose this valued quality in exchange for limitations, and settling into the status quo set by society. Children, at an early age, are fascinated with fairy tales, featuring princes and princesses living “happily ever after” and are instantly drawn to beauty and bright, colorful worlds, which in reality have been shaded by society. Authors began to grasp the imaginative quality we all once embodied, and channeled those thoughts and desires into fantasy novels, creating utopias and ideal societies for characters to experience. These fantasy novels address the American dream as well- living a successful, blissful life, and usually, finding love. Authors such as L. Frank Baum, J.M Barrie and J. K Rowling wrote these fantasy books to capture the desires and reams of Americans. Fantasy novels blossomed into an ideal method for authors to express the ideal society and American dreams of the era in which they were written.

In The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, by L Frank Baum, a young girl, Dorothy Gale, is thrown into Munchkin County, a small city in the Land of Oz, when a cyclone comes ripping through Kansas, her hometown. She is immediately greeted by the munchkins, and Glenda, the good witch of the north, who informs her that she has killed the Wicked Witch of the East. Dorothy only wishes to return to her farm in Kansas, however, this is only possible if she travels to “Emerald City” to plead for help from the mighty Wizard of Oz. Along the way, she encounters various others who decide to accompany her, in hopes that they will receive what they wish from the Wizard as well. She meets the Scarecrow, who simply wishes for a brain, a Cowardly Lion, who desires courage, and the Tin Woodman, who wants a heart. In “ America in the 1900s”, Marlene Targ Brill claims that some readers interpret the classic children’s book as a political allegory. She states, “They claim that the characters Dorothy meets represent powerful eastern capitalists (the Wicked Witch of the East), naive farmers (the Scarecrow), soulless industrial workers (the Tin Woodman), and everyday American citizens (the Munchkins).” (Brill 84) In the 1900’s, when The Wonderful Wizard of Oz was written, only a small percentage of Americans were wealthy, and it was those few who possessed most of the nations capital. These wealthy American citizens formed large corporations, called Trusts. This emergence of new, larger companies proved to be too much competition for smaller companies, and they failed to succeed. This lead to a new method of work referred to as assembly lines, where workers would usually add a piece to an object as it moved down a conveyor belt. This caused workers to loose their pride in their workmanship that...

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