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Is "The Wizard of Oz" considered 'gothic'?I need some help on proving to my class that...

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teebee111 | Student, Grade 11 | eNotes Newbie

Posted April 12, 2009 at 5:43 PM via web

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Is "The Wizard of Oz" considered 'gothic'?

I need some help on proving to my class that the Wizard of Oz is of a gothic nature and has gothic themes present throughout the film.. HELP!

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dswain001 | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Assistant Educator

Posted April 12, 2009 at 10:05 PM (Answer #1)

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I could agree that the story "The Wizard of Oz" does contain some Gothic elements. For example, there is the theme of confinement. Dorothy feels trapped within the confines of normalcy. She longs to escape and see something greater than the world she knows.  Still, I wouldn't say that this would qualify the story as a Gothic tale.

Remember, Gothic tales are filled with terror and nightmarish incidents. Gothic stories are very dark and in most cases deal with the supernatural. Things like ghosts, vampires and demons are common. Additionally, Gothic settings are often medieval. While the Dorothy character is the typical "damsel in distress", the story lacks the spooky background or supernatural characters that would help it to fit into the Gothic genre.

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