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CREATED ON 17th November 2017

Analysis of Wicked, the Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the East by Gregory Maguire

Wicked, the Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the East is a fantasy novel by Gregory Maguire. It follows the life span of the Wicked Witch, the character from the Wizard of Oz, from her birth to her death, or her pseudo-death. In addition, it explores the question the nature of good and evil. The major character is, of course, the Wicked Witch, Elphaba. She is born green, with really sharp teeth, and fearful of water. When she gets near water, she gets really scared, and if she cries or a few drops of water get onto her it burns off her. When she is still young her father, who is a minister, decides they will move to the Quadling country to try and convert the folks there to the faith of the Unknown God. Elphaba is clarified many times throughout the book as “prickly.” She is intelligent, and likes to get people to think. She is also convinced that she doesn’t posses a soul, in part to thwart her father’s religious convictions, and partly because she truly believes she doesn’t. Then, there is Galinda. She meets Elphaba at boarding school in the town of Shiz, where they're paired as roommates. Galinda acts like a ditz but is actually quite wise. She's obsessed with becoming popular, until Doctor Dillamond dies. Then she becomes a little more serious and disenchanted with her old buddies. Doctor Dillamond is a Goat. Animals, with capital A’s, are treated as full human citizens until the Wizard arrives. They can speak and take part in society, but the Wizard passes bans on travel and employment. Doctor Dillamond is working on an important scientific experiment to demonstrate that there's not any difference between Animal and human tissue, and for that reason the bans could also apply to humans. He makes a major breakthrough, and then is murdered by Madame Morrible’s tick-tock machine. Madame Morrible is the headmistress of Shiz and works for the Wizard. Nessarose, Elphaba’s sister, is born without arms. She is annoyingly religious, and her fathers’ favorite. Elphaba once says about her: “If she ever comes down off that plinth - the one that has words written on it along the edges in gold, reading MOST SUPERIOR IN MORAL RECTITUDE - if she ever allows herself the be the b**** she really is, she’ll be the B**** of the East.” She becomes the Wicked Witch of the East. Fiyero is a prince from the Vinkus, the west of Oz. He meets Elphaba, Galinda, and Ness...

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