Dorothy Gale

From Academic Kids

Dorothy Gale is the protagonist in the fictional Land of Oz created by American author L. Frank Baum. She first appears in his classic children's novel The Wonderful Wizard of Oz and reappears in many of its sequels. She also is the main character in the classic 1939 movie adaptation of the book.

The classic books

In The Oz Books, Dorothy is an orphan raised by her aunt and uncle in the bleak landscape of a Kansas farm. She is swept away by a cyclone to the Land of Oz and, much like Alice of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, she enters a lively alternative world filled with talking creatures. In most of the Oz books, Dorothy is the main hero of the stories. She is often seen with her best friend and the ruler of Oz, Princess Ozma. Dorothy's surname, Gale, is first mentioned in Ozma of Oz.

The 1939 movie

In the 1939 movie The Wizard of Oz, Dorothy was played by Judy Garland. Shirley Temple had been an early choice of the filmmakers, but it now seems hard for most people to imagine anyone other than the young Garland playing the role of the innocent and inquisitive farm girl.

Modern works

While not exactly a villain, Dorothy is clearly not the hero in author Gregory Maguire's revisionist 1995 book Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West. She is only involved in the drama towards the end of the novel and her innocence and unyielding desire to return back home to Kansas result in much trouble for the main character of the book, Elphaba. In the popular Broadway musical Wicked (based on Maguire's book), Dorothy is not even seen on stage. Instead, she is only seen silhouetted during a pivotal scene. Although there has been some confusion over who provides the silhouette, it has been reported that voice actress Melissa Fahn has done it.



The land | The characters (including Dorothy and The Wizard)
The books | The authors (Baum | Thompson | McGraw | Volkov) | The illustrators (Denslow | Neill)
The film adaptations (The Wizard of Oz | The Wiz | Return to Oz)
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