The Reality Of Society

Essay add: 24-10-2015, 21:50   /   Views: 186

"A&P" is a wonderful short story written by John Updike that can be enjoyed through generations of readers and realists alike. The story shows a side of human nature in a pure form. The setting of the story is in a grocery store in a New England town. The weather is sunny and beautiful and the store is near a beach.

This great story starts with young ladies in swimsuits that stroll into the store to purchase food, and more particularly snacks. The main character of the story, Sammy, is a nineteen year old who does not seem to enjoy his job. Sammy is just a normal young man and is confused with his emotions and feelings. He is relatively too young to start understanding the way he feels towards girls. This story is very descriptive in the way it talks about Sammy and the other characters around him.

Sammy begins to talk about and describe each of the girls and compares each one of them to an item that is being sold inside of the grocery store, and he goes as far as to anoint each one of the girls with a title. There is a "chunky" fat girl, another girl with a chubby face, and a tall girl named "Queenie" who was more attractive and pretty than the other two. There are also old ladies that walk into the store. The narrator refers to them as "sheep". Probably because old ladies like to gossip and talk a lot.

This is also a means to show the age difference which has a reoccurring theme throughout the story. A&P's manager of the store, Lengel, is a particularly critical person in this story. Near the final few paragraphs of the story, he makes a comment to the girls, "Girls, this isn't the beach" (Updike, par. 13).

Obviously, this is talking about how revealing the girls are dressed and he becomes perturbed by their clothing choice. He wants the girls to make sure to cover themselves with more clothes the next time they come to see or purchase something from the store. The way Sammy seesLengel is not very positive. He is bossy and very loyal of his own duties.

Lengel talks about the girls that walk into the store and pokes fun at them causing the young ladies to feel humiliated. He stops being brash about how they are dressed as if he is trying to gain the girls' trust and liking. The theme of this story is how the setting and first person view of Sammy tie together and show how the natural human nature of older teenagers and teenagers alike have on girls.

The male fantasy of seeing women as sexual items can turn into failure later on in life.The grocery store setting shows how the prominent theme is elaborated by the different chances and opportunities that it gives Sammy to let his imagination run wild. This element adds a lot of depth to the story and is like a "playground" for Updike's ideas. In the grocery store, there are a lot of conventional and unconventional items. This is a good "opening" for Updike to open up his creative side to contrast and compare each one the girls with an item available in the store. These three girls can be a good use of his creative mind.

His creative mind seems to be doing him more bad than good in this story. Also, the grocery store is a place where a numerous amount of people visit and where Sammy can see lots of stuff that is not used very often. It is also a place where Sammy can have more freedom to stare at the girls, especially on a crowded day. Sammy has the advantage of gazing upon the girls as they walk through the aisles.

This gives him lots of time to study each one of them individually and figure out how each of them act. His infatuation with the girls is very common for his age and shows human nature vividly through his actions. Sammy has the opportunity to use his creativity in describing each of the girls in the story to show his lack of devotion to his job, and how his job is reflected through his poor performance.Another source of structure that helped mold the main theme of "A&P" would be how the story is narrated in the first person point of view. By narrating this story in a first-person viewpoint, readers of the story can understand what is going on inside of Sammy's head. First person point of view is more up close, and expresses accurately the main reason or cause of Sammy's behavior.

Sammy's point of view makes the story into a more vivid story by showing the reader the imaginative thoughts ofSammy to use his creativity to describe the girls with the products they sell. The setting of a story is helpful when trying to show an author's ideas. Obviously, in this story, John Updike wants to show the typical characteristics of a male teenager, particularly the way they think about women. This is extremely stressed throughout the story.

This example of a first person viewpoint opens up the reader to understand what is happening through all aspects to Sammy in the story.Imagination can get in the way of reality, and the consequences can be quite unexpected. The human mind works in strange ways, for better and for worse. Teenage minds will always be the same from generation to generation. The same simple law of human nature abides here. Boys are attracted to girls and that is how the world works.

The way Sammy perceives his situation is logical. He believes that if he takes up for the girls, he can get with one of them and get in a relationship. Unfortunately, none of that happens and he loses his job, which is quite unfortunate for Sammy. Life is full of benefits, rewards, and hard times.

Sometimes, things in life are short-lived and the consequences are grave leading to failure.

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