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Symbolism Of Childhood In Peter Pan And Wizard Of Oz

Decent Essays
"Childhood is the kingdom where nobody dies", a quote from Edna St. Vincent Millay. Both Peter Pan and Wizard of Oz, use childhood to promote "The Golden Age". According to Marriam-Webster.com, this term is described as, “a period of great happiness, prosperity, and achievement.” But “the golden age” is also defined as a period where authors discovered that children were more than innocent angels and that their childhoods are important, joyous, and unique. Both authors, Barrie and Baum show this throughout their novels. Barrie uses imagination and a fear of growing up while, Baum uses irony and a powerful symbol of home.
In the Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Baum introduces the main character, Dorothy. She is a 16-year-old girl that lives in Kanas with her aunt and uncle. She gets very little attention and has only one friend: her dog Toto. Dorothy is described as a child and stays a child throughout the entire book, even when facing some difficult tasks. This is a different idea than some of the other Golden Age texts such as Alice in Wonderland and Peter Pan.
One of the most famous quotes from the novel is, “’there is no place like home.’” (Baum, chapter 4) with Dorothy walking just three steps in her silver shoes. This is just one example of a quote that hints at her age and innocence. When children are upset, we often hear them say, “I want to go home”. Home has always been a place of comfort and security. Dorothy’s home doesn’t resemble these characteristics when she
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