Assignment: populism and the wizard of oz


An Eastern Worker/Industry as the Tin Woodsman



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An Eastern Worker/Industry as the Tin Woodsman...

The Tin Woodsman who joins them represents the American worker whose grinding labours have left him, at least for a time, rusted and heartless.


"He (the Cowardly Lion) struck at the Tin Woodman with his sharp claws. But, to the Lion's surprise, he could make no impression on the tin, although the Woodman fell over in the road and lay still."

The eastern laborers of Baum's era were often cruelly subjected to long hours, low pay, and an inability to argue for themselves because labor unions were prohibited and the ones that existed were powerless. Baum noted in this passage how William Jennings Bryan could not get the vote of the worker during his election. Baum was taking a stand against the approach of the Populists and Bryan. He contended that the worker could find his own solution just as the Tin Woodsman, in accepting his fake heart, found his own emotions.

Or as Industry who doesn’t stop, and needs oil to survive.




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