The Emerald City Was Not a Green City


Martin Melosi offers a historical juxtaposition to the modern concept of a green city (or green urbanism). He analyzes the Emerald City in L. Frank Baum’s novel The Wonderful Wizard of Oz in order to highlight how limited perspectives on urban greenness once were. While Baum’s novel does not convey an environmental ethic, it does illustrate a wide gap between thinking about the city and its possibilities for achievable greenness in the past, and the changing framework of recent years.