Political interpretations of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz - Wikipedia

but jensen then proceeded to add two new points to the standard littlefield interpretation, finding analogies for toto and oz itself: dorothy's faithful dog represented the teetotaling prohibitionists, an important part of the silverite coalition, and anyone familiar with the silverites' slogan "16 to 1"--that is, the ratio of sixteen ounces of silver to one ounce of gold--would have instantly recognized "oz" as the abbreviation for "ounce. a large portion of the population must do it collectively however and that’s the rub. must be admitted that the pioneer had been a republican paper before baum bought it, and perhaps he had to maintain its partisan identification in order to maintain its circulation. wicked witch of the west – western industrialists, bankers, and the railroads. frank baum's lines and see various images of the united states at the turn of the century. but there was one notable (and somewhat disturbing) aspect of genovese's piece: littlefield's name was never mentioned. here is a link where you can see and read the original story.) sean connery’s character, a wild bandit, finds a copy of the book and teaches himself to read. the lead of influential articles by henry littlefield (1964) and hugh rockoff (1990), teachers of economic history often relate the populist movement of the 1890s to l. leach has shown us another new way of looking at the book, a way that emphasizes a different side of the gilded age--the fascination with the city and urban abundance, the rise of a new industrial ethic, and so on. keep pushing and praying to expose the wizard this coming november!

Oz Populism Theory

but an important part of the allegory theory had been the idea that baum was sympathetic to populism, and that his choice of themes in the wizard of oz had been based on his agreement with their principles. "the wonderful wizard of oz was an optimistic secular theraputic text," wrote leach. of the wizard of oz - part 1 banking system fraud. the wicked witch of the east was grover cleveland; of the west, william mckinley. the populists, who mainly focused on monetary reform as a way to create more equitable economic growth and opportunity, were mainly supported by farmers, small businessmen, and other powerless groups who suffered acutely during the boom-and-bust cycles that plagued the american economy throughout the post-civil war era. the deadly poppy field, where the cowardly lion fell asleep and could not move forward, was the anti-imperialism that threatened to make bryan forget the main issue of silver (note the oriental connotation of poppies and opium). wicked witch of the east – a stand-in for wall street financiers, eastern elite big businessmen, and washington politicians. many classic literary works have actually been thinly veiled allegories of contemporary or historical events, and many of the world’s most famous writers of fiction such as george orwell, mark twain, upton sinclair, and aldous huxley are perhaps remembered even more for the depth and quality of their social and political commentary than they are for the overall quality of their writing. parallels between the wizard and william jennings bryan have also been noted, possibly because bryan had been a candidate for the office of president twice. scarecrow – the american farmer, who was often portrayed as illiterate and brain-dead by elite policymakers who feared their radical activism and support for populist-style reforms. the baum bugle is published by the international wizard of oz club.

The Wizard of Oz as a satirical allegory of money and politics in 1900

. frank baum worked as a journalist and wrote many editorials on political topics, so there is no question that he was aware of the hot button issues of the day and of the kinds of critiques of american political society that reformers and activists were making. munchkins – the poor tired mass of citizens in the united states, enslaved by powerful interests and clueless about what to do to change things. most folks are sleeping and listening to the wizard whisper in their ears.. gene clanton, populism: the humane preference in america, 1890-1900 (boston, 1991), 149-50. the revelation that the wizard is a phony leads him to question the nature of a godlike voice that issues from a giant mask telling bandits like him what to do. secrets about "the wizard of oz" we bet you didn't know. leach's two essays in a new edition of the book. written by frank joslyn baum (baum's son, who died during the project) and russell p. for a brief discussion of how he came to write the essay, see henry m. for more on baum's editorship and political affiliation, see nancy tystad koupal, "the wonderful wizard of the west: l.. hugh rockoff, "the 'wizard of oz' as a monetary allegory," journal of political economy 98 (1990): 739, 751.

Following the Yellow Brick Road: The Real Story Behind 'The

  the characters in the book found the answers they were seeking only when they turned inward and stopped looking for someone to tell them what to do, and the lesson they learned is that the power to re-shape their realities and transform their lives had been lying dormant inside of them all along. and as good as some of those later books are, an ozian oz(described on its own terms) was nowhere near as fascinating as an american oz. a number of reform democrats shared the populists' distrust of railroads and bankers,their support for inflation, and so forth, but the democrats disagreed with the populists' call for a strong and active government to solve those problems, and in fact they tended to see populists as dangerous socialist radicals. during the municipal elections that spring, baum editorialized in support of the republican candidates; after they won, he wrote that "aberdeen has redeemed herself ., and in some ways this is a mockery of the rank and file american. we are in a similar situation now and all it takes is for folks to see, and do (stop going along with the wizard and his schemes). once in the emerald palace, dorothy had to pass through seven halls and climb three flights of stairs; seven and three make seventy-three, which stands for the crime of '73, the congressional act that eliminated the coinage of silver and that proved to all populists the collusion between congress and bankers. littlefield looked at the wonderful wizard of oz and saw things no one had seen there before. given this experience, it is perhaps not surprising that the wizard of oz adopts a sly and cynical attitude toward power, associating it with witchcraft, sorcery, and humbug." later that year, baum urged unity against the growing independent movement: "we are all members of one great family, the family which saved the union, the family which stands together as the emblem of prosperity among the nations--republicanism! monetary policy was a huge political issue at the time, with big businessmen generally supporting tight money and the gold standard while reformers favored an enlargement of the money supply through the coinage of silver or the issuance of paper money.

Ffs The wizard of oz - a political allegory - YouTube

nye, the wizard of oz and who he was (east lansing, mich. the yellow brick road: the real story behind ‘the wizard of oz’.. martin gardner, "the royal historian of oz," in gardner and russel b. some extent, allegory and metaphor are always in the eye of the beholder, and unless an author has explicitly explained just exactly what he or she was trying to say in a particular work – and baum never revealed his true intentions with respect to the wizard of oz to anyone – there will always be room for disagreement and variations in interpretation. given the mounting evidence against it--given that littlefield himself has admitted that it has "no basis in fact"--should we forget the whole notion of the wonderful wizard of oz as a parable on populism? frank baum’s the wizard of oz, also has a deeper meaning. "it helped make people feel at home in america's new industrial economy, and it helped them appreciate and enjoy, without guilt, the new consumer abundance and way of living produced by that economy.. richard jensen, the winning of the midwest: social and political conflict, 1888-1896 (chicago, 1971), 282-83. specifically, the book emphasized an aspect of theosophy that norman vincent peale would later call "the power of positive thinking": theosophy led to "a new upbeat and positive psychology" that "opposed all kinds of negative thinking--especially fear, worry, and anxiety. that the wizard is a 'parable on populism,' but it does share many of the populist concerns and biases. my mind this offers a simple, timeless interpretation of the wizard of oz: politicians may offer you miracles, pretend great wisdom, and make you feel feeble and dependent, but only you can really help yourself.

OZ, POPULISM, AND INTENT | Dighe | Essays in Economic

1964, it never occurred to anyone that the wizard of oz, which had captivated millions of children around the world in both it original literary form and on the silver screen, was anything more than a vividly imaginative work of fantasy. last year, i was able to amass 17 pages of symbols and references that extend beyond what is mentioned in this article. he looks behind the mask, becomes disillusioned and begins a journey of discovery. cowardly lion – this was william jennings bryan, the populist and democratic candidate for president in 1896 and 1900, who was nicknamed “the lion” for his fiery rhetoric and called a coward by many for his refusal to support america’s decision to go to war with spain in 1898. adults--especially those of us in history and related fields--like it because we can read between l. just as many in the book believed the silver slippers that dorothy had acquired after accidentally killing the wicked witch of the east had magical powers, many farmers, laborers, and small businessmen believed that expanding the money supply by putting more silver in circulation would stop the boom-or-bust business cycles that plagued the economy during that time. because the images are still there, the littlefield interpretation (especially as modified by clanton, rockoff, and others) remains a useful pedagogical device. a recent history of the populist movement, gene clanton wrote that while the wonderful wizard of oz was "a classic parable on the silver crusade," littlefield had gotten some of it confused. but while the wizard of oz as a political satire makes fun of politics and the pomposity it breeds, there is something more to the book than just this. frank baum and the progressive dilemma," american quarterly 20 (1968): 616-23, made a similar point, but outside the context of littlefield's analogies. the course of the next twenty-five years, as other historians and academics looked more closely at baum’s tale they became convinced that littlefield had been right, and the idea that the wizard of oz was really intended as a political allegory started to enter the realm of conventional wisdom.

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clanton suggested that if the wicked witch of the east was the forces of industrial capitalism, then baum's wicked witch of the west was populism itself. wonder what the meaning of the rest of the 14 oz books is. leach, "the clown from syracuse: the life and times of l. they were changed to ruby slippers in the movie because the wizard of oz was one of the first color movies, and they wanted to show how amazing color was by having the slippers be a bright red. according to littlefield, baum, a reform-minded democrat who supported william jennings bryan's pro-silver candidacy, wrote the book as a parable of the populists, an allegory of their failed efforts to reform the nation in 1896. wizard of oz was and is used by mk ultra mind control handlers to control their mind control subjects. in the summer of 1896, the year of the election that would mark what has been called "the climax of populism," baum published a poem in a chicago newspaper:When mckinley gets the chair, boys,There'll be a jollification. durden, the climax of populism: the election of 1896 (lexington, 1965); chicago times herald, 12 july 1896, quoted in new york times, 20 dec.. michael dregni, "the politics of oz," utne reader 28 (july/august 1988): 32-33. they are hard to come by, which is understandable, as the demand is probably very low. good witch of the north – midwestern farmers and others in the heartland who were strong in their opposition to the powerful elites who ran the economy and the political system.

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they go progressively downhill and seem to expose frank baum –or somebody– as having a psychotic fear of death. in 1897, he founded the show window, the first journal ever devoted to decorating store windows, and in 1900 (the same year as the wonderful wizard of oz), he published the art of decorating dry goods windows and interiors, the first book on the subject. this could explain why the wonderful wizard of oz is richer and more vivid than baum's later books in the series (he wrote 13 others, from the marvelous land of oz to glinda of oz): after that original volume, the characters and settings were no longer unknown--from the second book on, readers had encountered them before--and so baum had less reason to use american images as the basis for his descriptions. baum gave us a delightful and unforgettable way of illustrating a number of gilded age issues, from populism and the silver movement to the gilded age presidency, from the problems of labor to the insurrection in the philippines. culver, "what manikins want: the wonderful wizard of oz and the art of decorating dry goods windows," representations 21 (1988): 97-116. he consistently voted as a democrat [sic], however, and his sympathies always seem to have been on the side of the laboring classes." still, he concluded that "the relationships and analogies outlined above . perhaps the best example was a widely-reprinted essay, first published in the los angeles times in 1988, in which michael a.(9) another textbook contained a two-page "special feature" essay explaining the wonderful wizard of oz as a populist allegory (although once again littlefield's name was not mentioned). wonderful wizard of oz was no longer an innocent fairy tale.  the wizard of oz also functions as a spiritual allegory, showing people how they can make miracles happen in even the most difficult of circumstances just by relying on the natural gifts they have been given by god.

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mk ultra is a cia project that uses mostly women as sex slaves to entertain high ranking government officials of the us and visiting dignitaries. scholars continued to extend and modify littlefield's interpretation, laymen discovered it as well. in the preface to the wonderful wizard of oz, baum stated that he wanted to write a new sort of children's story: a modernized, american story, shorn of all the old world images and motifs." leach concluded that "the book both reflected and helped create a new cultural consciousness--a new way of seeing and being in harmony with the new industrial order. winkies – chinese laborers, abused and controlled by powerful western interests just as the wicked witch of the west abused and controlled the winkies. the information in this article is part of the reason they chose ‘oz’ (as well as the bright colors, repeated lines and terrifying aspects of the movie)? (this was the reason littlefield, at the time a high school teacher, developed his analysis in the first place; the correspondences between populism and the wonderful wizard of oz, he wrote, "furnish a teaching mechanism which is guaranteed to reach any level of student. send them to school, give them books and what do they do…. the emerald city, with its prosperous homes and luxurious stores, resembled nothing as much as it did the "white city" of chicago's columbian exposition of 1893, which baum had visited several times., deacle, and economopoulos: caught in the headlights: revising the road kill hypothesis of antebellum illinois bank failures. passio everything i neeeded to know in life, i learned by watching the wizard of oz.

first, he produced an overwhelming number of correspondences, and others have added to the list. before he became a professional writer, baum worked as a traveling salesman and owned a dry goods store. the wizard, like everybody else, was just trying to survive and was really subservient to the power of the wicked witches of the east and west. furthermore, baum's pioneer, while clearly republican, was quite progressive: he wrote in support of women's suffrage, alternative religions, occultism, toleration, and so on." like jensen, attebery cautioned against an uncritical acceptance of littlefield; and again like jensen, he went on to suggest an analogy of his own: "dorothy, bold, resourceful, leading the men around her toward success, is a juvenile mary lease, the kansas firebrand who told her neighbors to raise less corn and more hell.")(8) the journal social education suggested using the wonderful wizard of oz to help secondary school students understand the issues behind populism, and i myself proposed the littlefield thesis as a possible lecture topic in an instructor's manual for a popular college-level textbook. the essay was retained in later editions of the textbook; the third edition was published in 1991. but when further research revealed that this had not been the case, that baum as a journalist and editorialist in south dakota had in fact authored several pro- republican pieces and had even written disparagingly about the populists, most consigned the political allegory theory to the category of urban legend..; the wizard, "a little bumbling old man, hiding behind a facade of paper mache and noise, . first heard of the connections of the wizard of oz to the populist movement when i began teaching ap us history in 2005. from other, more overtly political writing sof baum’s, and from biographical information about baum himself, the evidence suggests that oz was not a populist parable.

the wonderful wizard of oz "mirrored perfectly the middle-ground ideology that was fundamental among those who favored reform yet opposed populism," wrote clanton. disguising political satire as a children’s story is just the sort of thing that would have appealed to someone with baum’s trickster personality and sense of humor, and he was also the type who would never have admitted to anyone just exactly what he was up to. in addition, it also stands as a tribute to the spiritual tradition of self-help and self-reliance, which can bring us happiness and freedom if we are willing to surrender to god and live fully in the wisdom, strength, and clarity that are our natural birthrights. "baum's story was an apt metaphor or parable of progressivism, not populism. children like it because it is a good story, full of fun characters and exciting adventures. furthermore, baum's involvement in the theater, as everything from actor to producer and writer, taught him to appreciate the artistic lifestyle that only the big cities could offer. genovese described the wonderful wizard of oz as "the story of the sad collapse of populism and the issues upon which the movement was based. he is the founder and executive director of usagold (both the website and gold brokerage service), the author of three books on the gold market, and the editor of "news & views, forecasts, commentary & analysis on the economy and precious metals," the firm's client letter. the good witch of the south – a personification of southerners who realized they were being exploited and repressed by eastern political elites.. there have been other interpretations of the book--scholars have read it from psychoanalytical, feminist, theological/philosophical, mythological, and marxist perspectives, among others----but littlefield's was easily the best known and most widely accepted of the bunch. littlefield found a number of parallels between the characters in the book and historically-significant political figures who lived during those times, and also identified themes and archetypes in the story that seemed to clearly relate to life and politics as they had been experienced in gilded age america.

Wizard of oz and populism essay

beck goes deep into "the wonderful wizard of oz," book & gold, silver, hugh rockoff's allegory." about half of rockoff's article consisted of an economic analysis that justified bryan and baum's silver stance. reminds me of my students when the are assigned a book to read for a report and instead watch the movie..In-depth, cutting-edge coverage of the gold and silver markets for over 25 years. the 1980s, littlefield's interpretation had become the standard line on the wonderful wizard of oz. citing gardner, littlefield mentioned baum's support for democratic candidates and, of course, the torchlight parades for bryan. rockoff, who saw in the wonderful wizard of oz "a sophisticated commentary on the political and economic debates of the populist era," discovered a surprising number of new analogies. you may use these html tags and attributes:

. this classic work of children’s fiction, which in the hundred-plus years since it was written has become perhaps the most familiar fictional story in the world, is in fact a sly political satire filled with rich allegorical and metaphorical imagery that could act as an historical primer on the issues that dominated the political climate of its day. also, kansas in the movie is in black and white, whereas the land of oz is in color, and they wanted to make a more visual change from her shoes in kansas, which were actually white but appeared silver because of the black and white effect." it was through this positive thinking, and not through any magic of the wizard, that dorothy and her companions (as well as everyone else in oz) got what they wanted.

for other examples of educators and the littlefield thesis, see michael gessel, "tale of a parable," baum bugle 36 (spring 1992): 19-23. that disclaimer out of the way, what follows are a list of some of the political-historical allegories and metaphors that careful analysts have identified after looking very closely at the characters and situations in the wizard of oz:Dorothy – the all-american girl who represents virtuous, hard-working citizens who were attracted to radical politics because they realized things had gone terribly wrong and that something needed to change. richard jensen, in a 1971 study of midwestern politics and culture, devoted two pages to baum's story. hence in 1988 the utne reader praised a newspaper article for "expos[ing] oz as a parable on populism," a movement that had been critical of "eastern banks and railroads, which [populists] charged with oppressing farmers and industrial workers. years after baum's death in 1919, the best biography of him was a twenty-five-page sketch written by martin gardner for a new edition of the wonderful wizard of oz in 1957. was an interesting notion, one scholars could not leave alone, and they soon began to find additional correspondences between populism and the wonderful wizard of oz. more money would increase demand for goods and services, freeing up more funds for smaller investors and making things easier on debtors hurt by tight monetary policies that kept the value of the dollar artificially high. story book was used as an element in the 1974 dystopian film zardoz."perhaps we spend too much energy trying to foretell the future, and too little trying to be resilient whatever happens.?) if everyone collectively would stop feeding the wizard, he would go and scheme somewhere else! standard reference on how gold performs during periods of deflation, chronic disinflation, runaway stagflation and hyperinflation.

frank baum was known as a practical joker and a storyteller who liked to bend the truth every now and again, and those who were treated to one of his “true life” fantastic tales were never quite sure if he was talking about something that had really happened or spinning an elaborate yarn out of fairy cloth. cathy o’brien was the first “presidential model”, as they were called, that escaped from the program alive to tell her story in a book by her and a cia psychologist, mark phillips., educators discovered littlefield's usefulness in teaching populism and related topics. baum's masterpiece was popular, leach explained, "because it met--almost perfectly--the particular ethical and emotional needs of people living in a new urban, industrial society.. one could try to reconcile the differences by suggesting that the wonderful wizard of oz was not so much about the populists themselves as it was about the culture that gave rise to the populists. i was wondering, there must have been something wrong i saw the movie and read the book they were clearly red and ruby shoes not silver.. when describing characters and settings that readers have never encountered before, writers (and especially writers of fantasy) might naturally use familiar imagery to help the reader along. this paper reexamines the inevitable question of whether baum intended his story as a parable on populism. but this oversimplifies littlefield's argument, which was about silver and gold, william jennings bryan and dehumanized factory workers, not just "agrarian discontent. is only a sampling of some of the most obvious connections that have been identified between characters and situations in the wizard of oz and the real-life politics of its time., mcferrin, and wills: returns in the western range cattle industry: reconstructing the financial history of the matador land and cattle company, 1883-1920.
when they tried to film dorothy in silver slippers, they came out dull and lifeless looking, so ruby red did the trick. he has written numerous magazine and internet essays and is well-known for his ongoing commentary on the gold market and its economic, political and financial underpinnings. in fact, it became clear after closer analysis that the wizard of oz had been basically skewering all of the interest groups and political ideologies that had been influential or popular at the time, including populism, and when the book was read from this perspective, the allegorical nature of the work became all but impossible to ignore. but it was in that year that a high school history teacher named henry littlefield published an article in the journal american quarterly making the case that this well-known tale, which had been published for the first time in 1900, had been written as a parable on populism, an influential political reform movement that flourished for a time in the latter part of the 19th century. perhaps we can no longer say that baum wrote the wonderful wizard of oz "as an allegory of the silver movement," but we can still read it as an allegory of the silver movement--or, as henry littlefield noted just two years ago, "we can bring our own symbolism to it. furthermore, the wonderful wizard of oz reflected baum's belief in theosophy, a spiritualist/occultist quasi-religious movement that was popular in the late nineteenth century. one would be hard pressed to find any character, setting, or event in the wonderful wizard of oz that does not have a "populist parable" analogy. an unmonetized, channel building video, I explore the political allegory of the iconic film "The wizard of oz," and the popular theory of economists and h." leach pointed out that the book exalted the opulence and magic of the metropolis.'s political affiliation was a big part of littlefield's argument for seeing the wonderful wizard of oz as a populist allegory. funkhouser, "inquiry, 'oz,' and populism," social education 51 (1987): 282-83; thomas s.