log Post 5: What on Earth is “The Wizard of Oz”?

The Wizard of Oz is a popular classic novel written and published in 1900. It features a young girl who gets stuck in a tornado that takes her to the land of Oz. In Oz, the girl gains several friends and companions in her adventure. The communicator of this novel is the author of the book, L. Frank Baum. Baum is best known as a popular author for children’s books at this time. I believe that the audience of this book can be a number of people. At the surface level, the story is appealing to children as the main character is a child and features many themes (magics) and characters (witches and wizards) that are common in children’s stories. Though the story may seem childish, the deeper recurring themes and allegorical significance of the Wizard of Oz make it a story for adults. The story features many themes about the state of American politics at the time which could only truly be understood by an adult. 

A passage in the novel that contains the word “wild” in it is at the beginning of Chapter 6 when The Cowardly Lion is introduced into the story. The word is used when Dorthy, Toto, and the Tinman are walking through the woods and she hears the sound of a wild animal in the bushes. This sound scares Dorthy and she describes her heart racing and her fear for Toto, her dog as she walks through the words. In this passage, wild means something animalistic and dangerous is there. This is further exemplified by describing Dorthy’s emotional reaction to the sound and appealing to the reader’s pathos. 


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4 Responses to log Post 5: What on Earth is “The Wizard of Oz”?

  1. aga2544

    Hi, I agree that Baum’s story is not just directed toward children. I also agree that the story of The Wizard of Oz is an allegory for the state of US politics at the time of its conception. I also chose Chapter 6 to rhetorically analyze the usage of the word “wild.” I think you provide a thorough analysis by explaining how pathos was used to emotionally appeal to the audience. Overall, I think you did a good job, and I enjoyed reading this!
    -Anna Allen

  2. sdw2623

    I agree that the Wizard of Oz is not just directed to children but also adults. I do also agree that the message is about American politics at the time. I think you could provide what the message about politics. I like how you mention the use of pathos.

  3. njp768

    It’s wild to think how a book that many would think is just directed for children was meant to send a message to adults as well. I didn’t catch on to the political theme that Baum was trying to get to at first. But after looking over it again, it’s very clear how the author was trying to get at politics during that time frame. I also really like how you referred to the word “wild” from chapter 6 where it was the sound that was frightened Dorothy.

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