A&P John Updike

Topics: Bikini, Adolescence, Beth Phoenix Pages: 3 (1080 words) Published: April 28, 2011

Sammy’s Realization

A&P written by John Updike in 1961 in which the hero and the first person narrator, Sammy, a nineteen year old teenager who made a serious decision, took a stand for the girl’s right, to be able to wear what suits them. The conflict occurred when the manager of A&P, Lengel, came out of the door marked “Manager” hauling out a box of cabbage and met eyes with the girls. He tells the girls that the A&P isn’t and beach and there is policy they have to follow in order for them to be able to shop at the supermarket. Queenie, the leader of the girl group, argued they were dressed appropriately and that she only came to A&P to buy the fancy Herring Snacks. In retaliation, Sammy quits his job as a cashier and walks out of the store, hoping to be the girls’ hero. However, the girls had gone and Sammy realized that his life would be a hard one if he always stood up for underdogs.

Sammy understands himself as a hero, quitting his job “fighting” for the girls’ rights. However, Sammy’s decision was not affected by Lengel’s attitude towards the girls’ clothing. For a considerable amount of time, Sammy was deciding whether to quit or not but because of the length of time he has been working at the A&P and his daily encounters with the customers. During the years he has been working for the A&P, he resisted quitting his job because of his parents. Considering the decision to quit his job at the A&P, Lengel, the man who follows and enforces the policy, has known Sammy’s parent for a long time, and tells Sammy that he should reconsider what he is doing and how it would affect his family.

Like every other teenager, Sammy experiences what many other teenage boys experience. He is a naïve teenager looking for ways to quit a job that doesn’t appeal to his needs. For at least a few months, Sammy thought of quitting his job, however, because of his parents, considering they are a middle-class family, he resisted from quitting. But when his...
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