Wizard of Oz Allegorical Analysis

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Sam Stillerman
Wizard of Oz Allegorical Analysis
3rd Period Mrs. Stanley
APUSH

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is believed by many to be an allegory of the current economical and political state that America was facing in the late 1800s. This allegory is mostly in line with the populist movement, a quickly growing belief that bankers and corporations controlled the two major parties in America. The Populist Party quickly arose from this movement, consisting mostly of farmers and other agriculturally dependent Americans. The Populist Party had a number of ideas for the ongoing economic struggles faced by the federal government, and sought to establish legislation that served beneficial for the agrarian population in America. Although the author has denied this allegory to be true, it still serves as a symbolic way of learning the roles different groups of people had on the American economy in the late 1800s.

The characters in the Wizard of Oz each represented a portion of the population, separated into different groups by wealth, power, and significance. Dorothy represented the common American and their values. She is levelheaded, fair, and respectful. Her personality represents the ideal personality for the average American of the time. The Scarecrow represented the midwestern farmers. They are depicted through the scarecrow as brainless and inferior. They were victim to the monetary policy of the Gold Standard. The Tin Man represented the industrial workers. His body is made entirely of tin, which shows how the industrial workers were dehumanized in the factories. When Dorothy first encounters the Tin Man, he is rusted and unable to move. This is thought to represent the unemployment faced by many industrial workers during the economic crisis. The Cowardly Lion portrays William Jennings Bryan. Although Bryan was known for his powerful rhetoric, however much like the Lion, he was never able to follow through with what he supported. His critics accused him of...
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