The Wonderful Wizard of Oz - Literary Analysis Essay

Victoria Liu Mrs. Knable 8th Grade Language Arts Period 3 21 January 2011 Liu 2

To illustrate this point. Kansas represented the dreary. Frank Baum was not just a children’s fairytale novel? What if this popular classic has some symbolic reasoning of history tied into it? For instance. Baum lived during America’s “Gilded Age” (1877-1900). This was the Populist Era. he was a little black dog…” (Baum 15).. To begin with. Dorothy did . Toto made Dorothy happy which kept Dorothy from becoming lifeless like her surroundings.P. William Jennings Bryan.What if The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Everything and everyone in Kansas was gray except for Dorothy and Toto. the Populist Party was created by upset farmers and their leader. The three characters/items/events are Kansas. a standard that would fill the Gold Standard with silver. Bryan believed in the Silver Standard. The purpose of this essay is to describe three characters/items/events in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz and how they represent a historical figure/event in the Populist Era. in the book it says. From being happy and able to laugh. That was when some “robber barons” like J. In this case it says. hard and boring life of most American farmers. they had taken the red from her cheeks and lips. and saved her from growing gray as her other surroundings. This was a physical description of Aunt Em before she lived as a farmer’s wife. despite the controversy among the rest of the US. She was thin and gaunt and never smiled now. and they were gray also. the lifelessness of Kansas overtook her. Toto was not gray. She was not gray however.Taken the sparkle from her eyes left them a sober gray. President William McKinley was disliked by most Americans as well. “.” (Baum 12). the cowardly lion and the oil can. Andrew Carnegie and John D. In fact. “It was Toto that made Dorothy laugh.. Morgan. Rockefeller had all the wealth in America and ran giant corporations.

It also says in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Dorothy was only a modest girl and did not concern herself with farming. They needed oil for heat in their homes. Just like the Cowardly Lion. but instead. People disliked him and his cowardice. The King of Beasts shouldn't be a coward.” President McKinley was scared of people confronting him but since he was the president. something that made her joyful. many would be left homeless and jobless. McKinley did not want to get in the war and was considered a “coward” to the people of the United States. Rockefeller.. “But that isn't right. the oil can represented John D. he has the authority to send them away. “You wouldn't be as badly off as John D. “Whenever I've met a man I've been awfully scared. Everyday citizens needed oil from Standard Oil because it was the only oil company at the time.. Industrial workers needed Standard Oil because that was how they earned money to live. the scarecrow even mentions Rockefeller by name. Lastly. but I just roared at him. To support this statement. Kansas represented the dull life of farmers and their hardships.not go gray like her Aunt and Uncle. If Standard Oil went out of business. played with Toto. The tin man also needed the oil can to oil his joints in case they became rusted. in the book it says. the Cowardly Lion represented Isolationists like President William McKinley. Standard Oil.if I should get caught in the rain.. In summary. and rust again.. In the play. Rockefeller's oil company. Oz p34).” (Swartz. Thus. Additionally. He'd lose six thousand dollars a minute if that happened. and he has always run away. The scarecrow was telling . In this case “.” (Baum 69).” (Baum 83). McKinley was scared of the people so he hid. President McKinley was a coward just like the cowardly lion. I would need the oil can badly.

the tin man that it. They Cowardly Lion represented President William McKinley and isolationists because McKinley did not want to get involved in the SpanishAmerican War. Rockefeller could end up going in debt and in trouble. without his oil can was better than Rockefeller without Standard Oil because the tin man would only have to stand still until someone oiled him but Rockefeller would lose his money.D Rockefeller. Kansas represented the dreary life of the farmers and their hardships. The Industrial workers and citizens needed Standard Oil just like the tin man needed the oil can. a company run by wealthy J. In conclusion. the Cowardly Lion and the oil can are symbolic in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is not just an everyday children fairytale but a book used as a historical symbolism for adults. Therefore. . Clearly. Kansas. Standard Oil helped people just like the oil can helped the tin man even if it got irritating for people buying at expensive prices and the tin man needing to oil himself everyday. The oil can represented Standard Oil.

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Print. Chicago.Works Cited Baum. Frank. . 1900. L. Harper Collins.

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