Theme Of A & P By John Updike

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Literature in general gives the reader a perspective of the world. The writer allows the reader to percept, to understand the world, to see and hear through a different point of view each time. In this way the reader is able to feel all the emotions expressed by the writer and his attention is drawn to the important things of each story. In “A & P” and “Epicac” we can clearly see that both John Updike and Kurt Vonnegut use the first person point of view which means that both narrators play an active role into the story. In “A&P” the narrator is Sammy, a nineteen-year-old clerk at the “A&P” grocery store. Sammy narrates his experience with three young women, when they walked into the store wearing only the bathing suits. Sammy, despite his boss’s order to scold the girls for entering the store dressed inappropriately, he decides to disobey him and eventually quits his job. The story seems to be about the prejudice around the human’s body and its exposure. Sammy is in the middle of this revolution. If the text was written by the manager or by the girls it might have had a different ending. And this is why Sammy is considered an unreliable narrator. He considers most of the people as “sheep” or “followers” and he has a sexist opinion about what girls really have in their mind. Updike with the technique of the first person narration and the use of slang and casual language combined with the young man’s perception of some morals and beliefs manages to take a distance from the
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