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A&P, John Updike

One of the most important and difficult decisions an author has to make is how to present a character in a story to a reader. In A&P, John Updike uses Sammy’s thoughts to create his character and also helps to bring out the theme onto a level at which the reader could connect to the story. The figurative language used by Updike in A&P creates a certain mood and atmosphere in Sammy’s head. In the story, Sammy makes up names for everybody some of which are bums, sheep, cash-register-watchers, and a Sunday-school- superintendent.

This helps the reader understand what the characters named were like but moreover gave a idea of Sammy’s feeling about them. Updike uses a technique to reveal Sammy more and to create a atmosphere in which the story is taking place. Details about other characters not only described them but also Sammy’s intellect. One example is his description of the chunky girl in a bright green bathing suit. He explored every minute feature including her tan line. This much detail makes Sammy seem very intriguing and realistic. Readers want to read about things that everybody notices but never talks about.

In A&P, John Updike’s detailed description of the world through Sammy assists in bringing out the theme into which the author could relate to a story. It is almost as is we have all been at one time or another, seen the planet through Sammy’s eyes. Sammy is also seen as a sexist pig by many because of his detailed description of the three girls who walk in the store The main character, Sammy, in John Updikes short story A&P, is a cashier at a small grocery store . He can very easily seem to be male chauvinist pig to the audience.

This judgment is placed on Sammy because of the way he describes in detail the three girls who walk into the store. With some evidence and quotes from the story, Sammy can be determined a sexist pig. The first girl that walks into the convenient store is described through his eyes as, a chunky kid, with a good tan and a sweet broad soft- looking can with those two crescents of white just under it…. Even though this comment was not said aloud, in mind it is a sexist comment. Describing the girls can, meaning her buttocks, gives Sammy some credit of being a sexist pig.

Despite the girl was in a bathing suit and there was no beach around, it was probably not her intent to get the attention of the young boys. The only reason she was there was to get a jar of herring snacks. Soon after he sees the first girl, he sees the other two girls following her. He not only notices what they are wearing, but also what little clothing that they have on covers up. This clean bare plane of the top of her chest down from the shoulder bones like a ented sheet of metal of metal tilted in the light, describes how the bathing suit was slipping of the girl but in a more inferior manner.

With the straps pushed off, there was nothing between the top of her suit and top of her except her… , describing how Sammy sees her as a one-night stand type of girl. It is as if Sammy sees the girls more as playthings rather than humans. One other quote/thought that Sammy has while the girls (whom stay nameless all through the story) is when the first one who came in the store, ho Sammy calls Queeny, takes her money from the hollow at the center of her nubbled pink top.

He begins to get excited as he uncreases the bill as it just having come from between the two smoothest scoops of vanilla he had ever known there were. As the story proceeds, Sammy seems to be more of a sexy pig. In conclusion, Sammy is a sexist pig. He has displeasing and degrading thoughts of the girls. The idea of his precession of what the girls look like makes him a pig. However, the fashion in which they are depicted makes him sexist.

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