The Wizard of Oz and Populism

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The Wizard of Oz and Populism The Wizard of Oz has been considered one of the most heartwarming children’s books written, however there is more to this American fairy tale. The Wizard of Oz is actually based on a political allegory for the Populist movement, which was a movement that people did to better their economic situation but instead brought problems. The reason for this is that there are too many connections made from the characters, settings, and the plot to the Populist movement, for it only to be a coincidence. Throughout the Wizard of Oz many delightful characters are presented. The ones with a more clear resembles to the real life are the Scarecrow, Tin man, and the Wicked Witch of the East. The characters as well as their dilemmas’ have a deeper meaning then some may think. Each of the characters is symbolic to the ideas and events from the Populist movement. For example the Scarecrow’s problem seems to be that he is brainless. In the movie the Wizard of Oz Scarecrow is meant to be portrayed simple minded, When Dorothy first meets Scarecrow, in the movie, he can not seem to make up his mind on which path Dorothy should continue on to. In the film when it comes down to choices Scarecrow doubts his plans, thinking they will not be good enough, but the truth is all along he was smart. For example there is a scene where the Lion, Tin man and Scarecrow need to get into the castle to save Dorothy from the Wicked Witch of the West. Scarecrow is the one that offers his plan and it worked just the way they had hoped too. What the Scarecrow initially resembles are the farmers during the Populist movement era. According to Littlefield ‘William Allen White wrote an article in 1896 entitled “What’s the Matter With Kansas?”. In it he accused Kansas farmers of ignorance, irrationality and general muddle-headedness. What’s wrong with Kansas are the people, said Mr.
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