Point Of View In John Updike's A & P

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In “A&P” by John Updike, the choice of Sammy as narrator in first person point of view helps communicate the message that he approves of the daring decision the girls made to go out in public wearing nothing, but their bathing suits. Therefore from the moment the girls step into the store, they capture Sammy’s attention, and he focuses on how they act. The girls draw Sammy’s attention because they are not phased by the reactions they are causing the other customers in A&P to have. While the girls are shopping Sammy tells us, “I watched them all the way… The sheep pushing their carts down the aisle — — the girls were walking against the usual traffic (not that we have one — way signs or anything) — — were pretty hilarious. You could see them, when…show more content…
As Queenie is paying for their items Lengel, the store manager walks into A&P and calls the girls out for breaking a store policy. Witnessing the girls’ embarrassment causes Sammy to decide to quit. When Sammy tells Lengel that he plans to quit Lengel says to him, “Sammy, you don’t want to do this to your Mom and Dad,’… It’s true, I don’t. But it seems to me that once you begin a gesture it’s fatal not to go through with it… ‘You’ll feel this for the rest of your life,’ Lengel says, and I know that’s true too, but remembering how he made the pretty girl blush makes me so scrunchy inside.” (6 Updike) Although Sammy needs the job, he goes through with his decision to quit because he wants to stand up for the girls and be their “hero”. Lengel, who represents a character who disapproves of the statement the girls make, opposes how Sammy feels about their bold statement. Lengel’s opposition causes Sammy to act on his impulses and make a stand for anyone who has ever broken a dress policy. After making a stand for the girls, Sammy walks out to the parking lot and looks back at Lengel, who stands tall and
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