A&P story

Topics: John Updike, Short story, First-person narrative Pages: 2 (613 words) Published: December 3, 2013
Joe Sivasak Vongmanobkun
The “A&P” Short Story


People always take their place in society for opportunity and granted. They accept that position into which they are born and grow up in it, and pass that position on their children. Sammy, like many others in this world, is a young man and trying to make some money in a small town. But unlike some, he refuses to be struck in the same job for many years or the rest of his life. Until one day a group of girls are in the store in only bathing suits and Sammy begins to change his patterns of thought. In “A&P” story, the author John Updike creates setting, point of view, and symbolism to convey the story elements and consequences in Sammy’s life.

The first element that the author convey in “A&P” story is setting. Sammy’s description of the setting gives a boring story and daily routine of the people in the grocery store. Sammy gives the description of the stores, and he also shows how the girls’ naked feet are walking over the grocery to pull the readers into story of “A&P”. Moreover, he uses comparison to his dream girl and the other customers. In story, it explains and exemplifies his age of maturity because of his characterization of the girls. Then, Sammy continues to observe every detail of their appearances, and he even gives their nicknames and speaks most on Queenie’s features. For example, he defines her boobs as two “scoops of vanilla” and her legs as “white prima donna legs”. It can be assumed that something like this has never happened before in this small town, and it is new for Sammy hence why his reaction was sort of unpredictable.

Second element is point of view. In “A&P” story, it is told from the first person point of view of Sammy. The story is about the brief experience of three women in bathing suits in the A&P grocery, and Sammy worked as a cashier. The story shows about Sammy and how he viewed this world. This view of Sammy is made more complete because the story is told from his...
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