He wrote an essay to this effect for his high-school students in Mount Vernon, New York , and published it [1] in the American Quarterly in The Almighty Dollar and the Invention of America. In , he founded The Show Window , the first journal ever devoted to decorating store windows, and in 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. Less than a quarter century after his article appeared, Littlefield had entered the public domain. Leach, “The Clown from Syracuse: Taylor is an assistant professor of history and political science at Rogers State University, Claremore, Oklahoma.

The Wizard was no real help, and the group took care of the Witch themselves. Where the Populists looked to the federal government, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz delivers the message that the wizard’s power is all an illusion and it is misguided to look to him for solutions. He implicitly qualified Littlefield by pointing out that not all pro-Bryan silverites were Populists. 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. He had no power…the group did.

At the Democratic National Convention inthe assembled delegates nominated William Jennings Bryan, an avid supporter of free silver, for president.

Quite simply, Oz operates on two levels, one literal and puerile, the other symbolic and political.

The Wizard of Oz: A Parable for Populism?

Every character possesses the virtues they doubt. Parable on Populism,” American Quarterly 16 Silver shoes on a golden road? 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. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is one of America’s favorite pieces of juvenile literature.


Richard Jensen, The Winning of the Midwest: Children like it because it is a good story, full of fun characters and exciting adventures. On the way she befriends a brainless scarecrow, a heartless tin man and a cowardly lion.

Frank Baum himself had used.

Adults–especially those of us in history and related fields–like it because we can read between L. However, Baum merely wanted to tell a good story, and not to add any hidden meaning. The reaction to Littlefield was, predictably, mixed.

When Dorothy clicks the silver slippers and returns from Oz to Kansas, nothing has changed in Kansas a point that the movie made in a visually stunning and effective way when the movie reverts from Technicolor to black and white.

There are about 4 main characters which are Dorothy, Cowardly lion, Tin man, and the. In itself, however, this discovery proves nothing.

Oz Populism Theory

Fantastic fairytale Populist parable? By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. When McKinley gets the chair, boys, The magic word “protection” Will banish all dejection And free the workingman from every care; We will gain the world’s respect When it knows our coin’s “correct” And McKinley’s in the theis

henry littlefield wizard of oz thesis

In the book, the Wizard appears to be a giant head to Dorothy, to the scarecrow, a gossamer fairy, to the Tin Man as a beast and to the Cowardly Lion as a ball of fire…just as politicians try to be all things to all people.

Littlefield linked the characters and the story line of the Oz tale to the political landscape of the Mauve Decade. Populists and other free-silver proponents advocated unlimited coinage of the white metal in order to inflate the money supply, thus making it easier for cash-strapped farmers and small businessmen to borrow money and pay off debts.


It is also interesting to note that Baum’s biographers are opposed to the notion that Baum had any political intent in writing The Littlefiepd Wizard of Oz.

henry littlefield wizard of oz thesis

Furthermore, Baum’s involvement thesjs the theater, as everything from actor to producer and writer, taught him to appreciate the artistic lifestyle that only the big cities could offer. What point was Baum trying to make?

henry littlefield wizard of oz thesis

InHenry Littlefield published a thesis asserting that the story was an allegory for the politics of the s, especially the debate over gold and silver coinage. The wizad extensive treatment of the Littlefield thesis is an article by Hugh Rockoff in the Journal of Political Economy.

Michael Patrick Hearn is preparing a new biography of Baum; for now, the most reliable source of information is Hearn, ed. It was an interesting notion, one scholars could not leave alone, and they soon began to find additional correspondences between Populism and Littlefeld Wonderful Wizard of Oz.

The Wizard of Oz: A Parable for Populism? – ppt video online download

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz was no longer an innocent fairy tale. Unit 5 The Progressive Era. Gardner wrote just two sentences on Baum’s politics: Feedback Privacy Tjesis Feedback.

Stuart Culver discussed Baum’s book as a reflection of the advertising that accompanied the consumer culture. As editor of a small newspaper in Aberdeen, South Dakota, Baum had written on politics and current events in the late s and early s, a period that coincided with the formation of the Populist Party.

Leach’s two essays in a new edition of the book.