The Sandwich Factory
By Jason Kennedy
The main theme of the short story The Sandwich Factory is the mechanization of human beings. The plot takes place in 1994 at a sandwich factory and we meet the narrator who works there. Through him we get the impression that the employees are no longer considered humans or individuals, but just one of many. The factory threatens to turn human beings into machines by thwarting the development of their emotions and imaginations and in the end of the story the narrator realizes that he doesn’t want to be a part of the factory. The narrator in this short story is a 1 st person narrator who restricts his own view to the factory. It is important to remember that we hear his thoughts and his opinion, and that doesn’t necessarily mean that it is all true and he may seem unreliable – for example in some of his descriptions of the other characters. But one thing is to be sure of, and that is irrespective of whether he is reliable or not, the theme of the short story is still to be found. The narrator mentions his Joy Division records, his Camuls novels and the novel Confessions of a Mark and this indicates that he is a smart and intelligent person and in addition it also indicates that he probably is a student who has taken a low-paid job to make some money. The narrator is a man and this is based on the fact that it says in the text that he has no confidence with women but there is furthermore a quotation that establishes that the narrator is a man: “Dot wanted someone to have sex with me (…) Dot was concerned that I did not say much, that I didn’t try to “get into the girls’ knickers” and she searched for a girl who would sleep with me. I had zero confidence with women anyway…”1 Furthermore the passage also indicates that the narrator is different than the other employees in the sense that he has not yet been totally mechanized because he shows human emotions such as being shy about women and not being confident. Through the...
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