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Once Upon a Shop

In today’s world many people seem to be drawn by money and the power there comes with it. Therefore people forget to do the things that really mean something, and they forget the intrinsic value of being a human being. People try so hard to make a great image instead of just living. These are only some of the issues Jeanette Winterson focuses on in her essay “Once Upon a Shop”. She is a British writer and the text was first published in The Observer on June 13, 2010.

“Once Upon a Shop” is a story told by Jeanette herself, and it is about how she opened a little vegetable shop, called Verde. The shop was located in Spitalfields in the East end of London. She had been offered to sell her building to a cooperative brand, but she didn’t. Instead she open her little shop and the story tells us what ambition she had, and why she decided to open the shop. The story is also about the changes that have occurred over the past several years in the world. Jeanette seems to think that the changes since the Irish potato crisis and the Napoleon wars have been in a negative direction. The big food chains have taken over the market, which means that the smaller shops is struggling just to survive, because the bigger chains are dominating and pushing the small shops aside. Jeanette means this is a bad development, and it is clear to the reader that she prefers quality rather than quantity.

Jeanette seems to think, that the government also causes the negative development because they control the taxes. In that way they control who gets to pay more or less than others. It is clear to the reader, that Jeanette appreciates hard work and good workmanship, as described on page 10 lines 249-255. It becomes almost impossible for the smaller shops to avoid bankruptcy, which is due to the bigger food chains will benefit from taxes by the Government. The small shops are also having a hard time, because people in todays world usually prefers a fast expedition than a

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