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Pen and Paper Cyborgs: Queer Embodiment in Baum and Denslow’s The New Wizard of Oz



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Stone, Emma Tueller 


The Wizard of Oz has often been depicted as a Queer text. Its pop cultural references extend from monikers for queer identities (i.e., friend of Dorothy) to a general Judy Garland fandom to iconic drag performances. However, very little attention has been paid to the original children’s literature source of the many queer forms of The Wizard of Oz. Using theories of reproductive futurism and cyborg bodies, this paper interprets the many ways in which the inhabitants of Oz manifest queer embodiment and perform non-cis-heteronormative identity within the text. This analysis focuses especially on a 1903 illustrated edition of The New Wizard of Oz and the role the archive can have in creating new ways to interpret classic children’s literature texts. The tangibility of the archival materials also contributes to the idea that making and unmaking corporeality can dramatically influence the potential queer interpretations of an imagined world.



Wizard of Oz, Queer theory, manufactured bodies, archival texts

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CERJ, Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge

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