Magic and Witchcraft in “The Wizard of Oz”


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Essay #: 058515
Total text length is 19,485 characters (approximately 13.4 pages).

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The beginning:
Magic and Witchcraft in "The Wizard of Oz"
In order to explore the continuing presence of medieval and early modern conceptions of magic and witchcraft in contemporary culture, this essay will conduct a comparative analysis of scholarly work on the history of witchcraft and magic with the film The Wizard of Oz (MGM 1939). The choice of this film as a comparative text is due both to its widespread currency in popular culture – it being a well-known cinematic version of a series of fantasy books for children – as well as to the number of specific elements in the text that have analogies in traditions of magic and witchcraft in the medieval and early modern period. The thesis will be argued that both the number and the...
The end:
.....ial for trickery, and for popular mistaking of mechanical devices as being wondrous, while nonetheless still believing in the existence of occult knowledge and natural magic. In all of these aspects, we can see how The Wizard of Oz echoes many of the features of magic from the medieval and early modern period.
Fleming, Victor, dir. The Wizard of Oz. Metro-Goldwyn Mayer,
Kieckhefer, Richard. Magic in the Middle Ages. Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, 2000.
Kors, Alan and Peters, Edward, ed. Witchcraft in Europe 400-1700.
Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2001.
Russell, Jeffrey, and Alexander, Brooks. A History of Witchcraft:
Sorcerers, Heretics and Pagans. Second Edition. London:
Thames and Hudson, 2007.