Laurie Halse Anderson

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Speak: Part 3, Chapter 1 Summary & Analysis

Principal Principal announces that Merryweather High will be represented by the hornets rather than the wombats, because the mascot costume will take money away from the prom budget. Melinda imagines opposing teams making flyswatters and cans of insecticide for halftime shows. She notes that she is “allergic to hornets. One sting and my skin bubbles in hives and my throat closes up.”
The school mascot saga continues as the animal changes yet again. In this moment of comedy, however, Melinda darkly notes that hornets make her throat close up, symbolizing how mute and silent she feels she must be within the world of high school.
Communication versus Silence Theme Icon
Appearance versus Reality Theme Icon