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A & P by John Updike Setting Setting SymbolismSymbolism ThemeTheme.

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Presentation on theme: "A & P by John Updike Setting Setting SymbolismSymbolism ThemeTheme."— Presentation transcript:

1 A & P by John Updike Setting Setting SymbolismSymbolism ThemeTheme

2 Why a Supermarket? You are going to address the following questions to help you make notes on Updikes choice of setting in A & P. Write in detail and make reference to quotes from the story. 1) What is it about a supermarket context which would make the sight of girls in bathing suits shocking or possibly offensive? 2) a. How does Sammy feel about the supermarket, his fellow workers and its clientele? b. What do you think is the writers attitude towards them? Explain your answer. 3)Girls, I dont want to argue with you. After this, come in here with your shoulders covered. Its our policy. Given that Lengel is a Sunday School teacher and he makes reference to policy and shoulders covered, how might you say he sees the supermarket? Explain your answer. 4) What do you think the supermarket symbolises in contrast with the free-spiritedness of Sammy and the girls?

3 1960s America In the early 1960s women still wore dresses, hats, and gloves most of the time when they were in public. 70 million children from the post-war baby boom became teenagers and young adults. The movement away from the conservative fifties continued and eventually resulted in revolutionary ways of thinking and real change in the cultural fabric of American life. No longer content to be facsimiles of the generation ahead of them, young people wanted change. The changes affected education, values, lifestyles, laws, and entertainment. Many of the revolutionary ideas which began in the sixties are continuing to evolve today.

4 Symbolism in A & P In response to the following questions, identify how Updike uses symbols to represent key ideas. Write in detail and make reference to quotes from the story. 1) Given that he finds himself at odds with Lengels ideas, what might Sammys check-out slot represent in the context of the story? 2)Why do you think Updike chose to have the girls wearing bathing suits? Explain your ideas. 3)In what ways do you think Sammy sees the A & P customers as sheep? 4) …some young married screaming with her children about some candy they didnt get by the door of a powder-blue Falcon station wagon a) Who or what do you think this woman represents? b) Why might the writer have inserted this detail into the final paragraph after Sammy has quit his job?

5 Theme: What is A & P Really About? You are going to address the following questions to help you make notes on Updikes theme in A & P. Write in detail and make reference to quotes from the story. 1)What do you think is a central theme of the story? 2)Pick out three ways in which you feel Updike has addressed this theme and, in each case, explain how it comes across. 3)Have you taken a particular message from the story? Explain.


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