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Reply To: The Hero’s Journey in Contemporary Literature/Fantasy


Keith – thanks for highlighting the dream component of the Wizard of Oz, which is so much more than “it was all just a dream so never mind” (as when a popular television series kills off a major character, then ratings drop and they need to bring the character back a year later –e.g. Dallas in the 1980s). Even though Dorothy’s experience in Oz was a dream, I’ve never picked up that the adventure wasn’t “true” (though the adults on the farm humored her when she woke, there was a sense that they just couldn’t see with the eyes of child what was so).

No doubt that’s because the dream is in color, with waking life in black-and-white (you hit the nail on the head with that observation, which had not occurred to me before).

I also appreciate your reference to Wyrd (which JC suggests is derived from an amalgamation of the Old High German wirtel – “spindle” – and werden – “to become, to grow”). Reading that a few decades back in Creative Mythology altered my experience of MacBeth and deepened my sense of the Three Weird Sisters beyond caricature to an embodiment of ancient wisdom in the sense of the Norns or the Three Fates.