Study Guide

Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West Volume 1, Chapter 7

By Gregory Maguire

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Volume 1, Chapter 7

Child's Play

  • After the previous chapter's social studies lesson, we get back to the drama.
  • It's summer now, and Nanny is worried about wild animals lurking. Munchkinland is in a really bad drought, so desperately hungry and thirsty animals are wandering near people.
  • Melena makes fun of Nanny for her animal anxiety.
  • Elphaba sits quietly since she has yet to speak.
  • Nanny and Melena have an argument over Elphaba. Nanny thinks she should socialize with other children, but Melena doesn't want to expose her to them (or them to her).
  • Nanny insists:

    "[…] if you don't give her the weapons and armor with which she can defend herself against scorn, she'll make your life miserable as hers will be miserable." (1.7.37)

  • Nanny wins the argument, and she, Melena, and Elphaba go over to a neighbor's house.
  • The neighbor is Gawnette and she has a lot of kids.
  • Nanny hilariously explains that Elphaba is green and needs to make some friends. Gawnette says whatever.
  • Gawnette is a gossip and she grills Melena about "the Quadling" living at her house.
  • Nanny yells out occasionally to stop Elphaba and the other kids from throwing rocks, shoving, and biting.

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