Summer Girl, Lust Girl

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Summer Girl, Lust Girl

In David Updike’s “Summer”, Homer vacations at a beautiful lake with his friend Fred’s family and experiences his summer time with Fred’s sister Sandra. He was attracted by Sandra’s pure appearance; however, he is too shy and timid to express his unfamiliar feelings to her. Sandra has few senses about Homer’s feelings since she is innocent and lacking of awareness. In Susan Minot’s “Lust”, the protagonist loses herself in lust. She keeps searching love and fulfillments among different boys. She is addicted to meeting and adopting her partners although the relationships with them bring her few gratifications and a never-ending void. In David Updike’s short story female sexuality is portrayed as naïve, innocent, and pure, whereas in “Lust” female sexuality is casual, promiscuous and hollow. Sandra’s naivete is shown on her childish appearance and conservative dress. In Homer’s view, “[when Sandra] first came in her face was faintly flushed, and there was a pinkish line around the snowy band where her bathing suit strap had been, but the back of her legs remained an endearing, pale white” (49). Sandra’s “faintly flushed” face and “pale white” skin color represent that she is still childish. Updike uses the symbolism of “white” and “snowy” to describe Sandra as an innocent young girl, implying her purity and naviete. Moreover, at night when she lays on bed, reading, “her nightgown, [is] pulled and buttoned to her chin” (49). The way she dresses up is like a little shy girl does. Even at home she wears her nightgown carefully and conservatively. Because of bashfulness and ignorance, she tightly locks the collar, as well as her openness. Therefore, her conservative dress-up also shows her naivete. Sandra detests the men hitting on her at the bowling alley. In the evening, Homer often goes to the bowling alley, waiting for Sandra to get off work. “[Sitting] at the counter and watched [Sandra] serve up sloshing cups of coffee”, Homer found...
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