Abstract

Criticism of L. Frank Baum's The Wonderful Wizard of Oz has failed to acknowledge the importance of Dorothy's orphanhood. This article argues that he decided to make her an orphan to support the movement toward sentimentality, which embraced the sentimental value of children, rather than regarding them as miniature adults or valuing their economic contribution to the family. Baum's novel was written in the context of an emerging psychological discussion of child development. By portraying Dorothy as an orphan, Baum advocates for sentimental adoption, providing readers with a guide to understand what psychologists now call the journey toward self-integration.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1553-1201
Print ISSN
0885-0429
Pages
pp. 379-393
Launched on MUSE
2009-11-14
Open Access
No
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