The Marxist Criticism In The Wonderful Wizard Of Oz

1421 Words6 Pages
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is considered a classic in the history of children’s fantasy literature. The majority of the readers are the intended audience, children, and that influences the way it has been read and interpreted over the years. From a child’s point of view, this story is colorful and enticing, feeding into their curiously imaginative minds. As adults and re-readers of L. Frank Baum’s text, the meaning of the story changes due to the simple fact that our developed brains have ventured away from these magical thoughts, no longer being able to be enchanted by silver shoes and flying monkeys. There are deeper hidden meanings to be analyzed in this piece of work and by using the Marxist perspective many of those masked underlying issues…show more content…
This house and life is very mundane, gray and dull, not exciting. This infamous cyclone is what transports the main character Dorothy, her dog Toto, and the entire setting of the story into a place much different than her home in Kansas. This choice of transportation, the cyclone, is one associated with fear, destruction and spiraling doom but Baum writes it in a way that makes it graceful and appealing. “After the first few whirls around, and one other time when the house tipped badly, she felt as if she were being rocked gently, like a baby in a cradle” (Baum p.19). The word gently would not be used in this situation had it been a reality. The cyclone is acting as the whirlwind of life not knowing what the future holds, clueless, hoping to land on the right path. The world Dorothy has landed in is made to appear as that “right” place, the dream land, that utopian vision of a “City on a Hill”. This utopian vision is first portrayed once she steps out the house into a green land filled with colors and that picture perfect…show more content…
The Wizard himself is representative of this all-knowing, all-seeing emperor that society tends to make its economic/political leaders out to be. The Wizard promises the Common People, the characters, all their hopes and dreams in exchange for their hard work. At the end of the story, the Wizard is revealed to not have any magical powers at all, and it is seen that he is just an ordinary man whom people had given this persona to because they needed order and something to believe in. Dorothy and Oz have differences in class standing as well as gender dominance. This reflects the male-dominated, nineteenth-century tendency of collective optimism for a utopian society, which solely benefits the male gender. The combination of Dorothy’s age and gender marked her as inferior compared to Oz. By comparing Oz’s and Dorothy’s demographics and their differing modes of transportation, it is evident that Oz is the advantaged counterpart in the prejudicial power-structure. A perfect example of the role of gender and age in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is the chaotic scene in which Dorothy misses her chance to catch the hot-air balloon, another mode of transportation, even though Oz is able to ride in it and reap its benefits. Dorothy tried everything in her power to rush onto the hot-air balloon in order to return back
Open Document