Essay On Araby And John Updike's A & P

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James Joyces’ Araby and John Updike’s A&P are two short pieces of literature that follow the storyline of teenage boy and his short-lived crush. The two stories both have separate unique plots, settings, tones, and themes, however, the characterization in the two stories is quite comparable. Although Joyce’s Araby and Updike’s A&P may seem to be completely different, the characterization of both works is very similar in the sense that are both protagonists are dynamic characters, both protagonists can be judged harshly by readers, and the authors use minor characters to add more depth to the protagonists. The narrator of Araby and Sammy from A&P are dynamic characters because both boys face a change or development somewhere throughout their…show more content…
For example, the boy in Araby barely knew the girl he claimed to be in love with as he specifically states “I had never spoken to her, but a few casual words…” and “I did not know whether I would ever speak to her or not.” This reveals that the narrator did not know Mangan’s sister personally, rather he knew only her as a desirable object. In comparison, Sammy from A&P can also be critically judged for his behavior toward women in the sense that he was very presumptuous about the girls who walked into the supermarket in bikinis. Sammy desired the girls’ attention desperately and presumed that he deserved it. As a result, Sammy quit his job because he was “hoping they’ll (the girls) stop and watch me, their unsuspected hero.” Referring to himself as a hero also implies another wrongful presumption that Sammy had, in which he is subconsciously misogynic because the girls did not need to be saved and do not owe Sammy anything. Sammy could be judged by readers for his presumptions about the girls in A&P. In the end, Araby’s narrator and A&P’s Sammy were both able to be harshly judged by readers for their misogynic thoughts about women and their presumptions about the girls they
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