The Wizard of Oz is one of the most popular and beloved children’s fairy tales of all time. The story was written by American author Frank Baum and illustrated by W. W. Denslow. In fact, the original name of the novel was The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Many writers and critics agree that the narrative structure of the story was highly influenced by Lewis Carroll’s 1895 novel Alice in Wonderland.
The Wizard of Oz was first published in 1900 and soon became a publishing success. Children from all over the USA wrote letters to Frank Baum asking for a sequel of the novel, so Baum continued the story in The Marvellous Land of Oz. By the time of his death in 1919, he had written 14 children’s novels in total.
The Wizard of Oz is a timeless classic of children’s literature that chronicles the adventures of an orphaned girl named Dorothy Gale, who embarks upon a journey through the magical Land of Oz. Dorothy lives in a farmhouse with her aunt Em and her uncle Henry. One day, Dorothy and her dog Toto are whisked away from their home in Kansas by a tornado.
Picture by Ade McOran-Campbell. Public Domain License.
The tornado picks the house up with Dorothy and Toto in it. While the house is still flying, Dorothy eventually falls asleep. After a couple of hours, the house accidentally lands on the country of the munchkins, who are ruled by the Wicked Witch of the East. Dorothy helps the munchkins get rid of the evil witch and as a token of gratitude, the Good Witch of the North gives Dorothy a pair of magical silver slippers. (In the film, Dorothy wears ruby slippers). Also, the Good Witch tells Dorothy that if she wants to find her way back home, she should go to the Emerald City and seek help from the powerful Wizard of Oz.
Picture by The Western Sky. Creative Commons License.
On her journey along the yellow brick road towards the Emerald City, Dorothy meets the Scarecrow, the Cowardly Lion and the Tin Woodman and becomes friends with them. These new three characters in the story have one thing in common: they all have some specific wishes for their lives. The Scarecrow wants a brain, the Tin Woodman wants a heart, and the Cowardly Lion wants courage, so Dorothy invites them to go to the Emerald City with her to see if they can get some help from the Wizard of Oz to fulfil their wishes.
“Somewhere over the rainbow, way up high, there’s a land that I’ve heard of once in a lullaby.” Dorothy Gale.
For more than one hundred years, The Wizard of Oz has captured the imagination of many generations of children and adults alike. There are many inspiring and motivational messages that can be read between the lines of the story, but one of the most important of them all is that whenever you have a goal in your life, you should work very hard to reach it and never give up, no matter how many obstacles come up on your way. And if at some point you feel you have hit rock bottom, remember that you can always count on your friends. They will stand by you and help you overcome any difficult situation.
Related posts and exercises ➡ Alice in Wonderland: An Inspiring Journey (post), Harry Potter: A magical journey (post), The Little Prince (post), Laughter is the best medicine (exercise), Proverbs to remember (exercise), One ring to rule them all (post), Movie Time! (exercise).
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