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Analysis Of The Book ' Emerald City ' Essay

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Some stories can impact a culture so universally, that there is no longer a way to say a phrase without immediately making a connection. The automatic finish to “yellow brick” is “road” and there can never be a book that has a “City of Emeralds” because we would all think it was a reference to L. Frank Baum’s “Emerald City.” This pseudo-magical city, and its represen¬tation in any given version of The Wizard of Oz, provides a very specific insight into the cultural views of the time period it was created during and the people who formed that specific creative vision. For Baum, the Emerald City was a representation of how little we can trust the government in spite of its good intentions; Fleming’s 1939 film emphasizes the benefits of home by displaying more faith in the government; and Lumet’s 1978 film plummets into a general disenfranchisement with the ubiquitous establishment.
The original Emerald City of Baum’s Wonderful Wizard of Oz was marketed not only as the home of OZ the Great and Terrible, but also as a utopia for the citizens of Oz to live within and prosper. However, this façade crumbles at the end of the book when Dorothy and her friends discover that the green of the Emerald City is “no more [green] than any other city” (Baum 153) and the entire city is a hoax of green eye glasses. While many see Baum’s Emerald City’s fallible nature as a commentary on the use of dollar bills based from a gold standard, it can also be interpreted as commentary on the ideas of
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