A&P Character Analysis

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The two short stories “A & P” and “Shiloh” main characters show significant changes throughout the story. Both characters are said to be round characters (also known as dynamic characters). The Fiction Literature book defines dynamic characters as tending to often change by either learning or becoming more enlightened, grow or deteriorate. To simplify that, it means that the characters often have a change of heart throughout the story or change their way of life drastically throughout the story. The dynamic characters in these short stories are Sammy the narrator of A & P and Leroy (Shiloh) will be the main focus of this essay.

It’s really interesting to read stories with characters that have such major changes throughout them. It keeps you holding on and questioning both their thoughts and their reasoning. In John Updike’s A&P, the main character, Sammy, quits his job at the grocery store in order to impress the group of girls that have walked in with just their swim suits on. Most would think that Sammy did this to get the girls attention; others may believe he finally realized it was to get out of his dead-end job. Sammy could have been searching for a sense of personal gain and satisfaction, but with his sense of direction that’s unlikely. By taking sides with the upper-class girls, he feels as if he rises in class to meet the girl’s standards and the standards it takes to be a part of their class. It seems that Sammy was part of a lower-end family and may have had this job to help provide for his family, so that leads one to think, why? What is his reasoning? As Sammy goes on about this group of girls, he includes comments on how he can tell by their appearance that they are part of the upper class and how he wishes to live the life they do. Sammie’s reasoning for quitting unlike most believe based solemnly on getting Queenie the girl he dreams of, but I think it’s too move towards her way of life. For him to accomplish a move up in classes,...
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