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Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West

Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West


by Gregory Maguire

Gender Quotes in Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West

How we cite our quotes: Citations follow this format: (Volume.Chapter.Paragraph) and (Volume.Chapter.Section.Paragraph)

Quote #4

[T]he colleges had decided to give assembly lectures to all the students from all the colleges, at once. Boq would see Glinda at the first coeducation lecture ever held at Shiz. (

This detail gives us insight into how Shiz University is structured, and into how Oz itself functions.

Quote #5

"They've got a new witch performing. They say she's hot. She's a Kumbric Witch." (

It's really interesting that a Kumbric Witch is made to sound like a sort of stripper here. The idea of the Kumbric Witch as a sexual figure crops up a few times in the narrative, and it's a bit of a shout out to how witches were traditionally perceived (in our own world) as whores. (See the Puritan witch trials for this sort of rhetoric.) Elphaba is linked to the Kumbric Witch, but she is also portrayed as fairly asexual at times. Weird stuff going on all in all.

Quote #6

Once we get the full measure of it – we're slow learners, we women – we dry up in disgust and sensibly halt production.

But men don't dry up, Melena objected: they can father to the death.

Ah, we're slow learners, Nanny countered. But they can't learn at all. (1.1.23-25)

Nanny would have rocked her own Oprah-type show if she were around today. Or else she would have written very fun girl-power scripts like Nora Ephron or Nancy Meyers. Or perhaps she would have had her own stand-up comedy routine. Either way.

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