Preview
Preview

Human Oppressiveness in Two Kinds and A&P Essay

:: 7 Works Cited
Length: 2353 words (6.7 double-spaced pages)
Rating: Green      
Open Document
Need writing help? Check your paper »



- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

It was Emerson who said it best, “For nonconformity, the world whips you with its displeasure” (Porter 1155). With a detailed look of Amy Tan’s “Two Kinds” and John Updike’s “A&P,” you will find that this quote is entirely applicable in the context of oppressiveness and in the likeness of “coming of age.” These two stories document the different perspectives of two characters’ growing up and how the role of the invisible hand of oppression guides developing adolescents into mature adults; without prejudice or even forethought. The characters in question are: Sammy, an A&P store clerk whose time spent at work reveals how oppressed by society he is, and Jing-Mei, whose life and every move is dictated by the iron fist of her high-expectations Asian mother. In comparing these stories, you will find how two characters, with very different lives, are essentially affected by the same forces of humanity.
In analyzing these two stories, it is first notable to mention how differing their experiences truly are. Sammy is a late adolescent store clerk who, in his first job, is discontent with the normal workings of society and the bureaucratic nature of the store at which he works. He feels oppressed by the very fabric and nature of aging, out-of date rules, and, at the end of this story, climaxes with exposing his true feelings and quits his jobs in a display of nonconformity and rebellion. Jing-Mei, on the other hand, is a younger Asian American whose life and every waking moment is guided by the pressures of her mother, whose idealistic word-view aids in trying to mold her into something decent by both the double standards Asian society and their newly acquired American culture. In contrasting these two perspectives, we see that while ...


... middle of paper ...


... Vol. 257. Detroit: Gale, 2008. Literature Resources from Gale. Web. 13 Apr. 2011.
Porter, M. Gilbert. "John Updike's 'A & P': The Establishment and an Emersonian Cashier." English Journal 61 (Nov. 1972): 1155-1158. Rpt. in Short Story Criticism. Ed. Anna J. Sheets. Vol. 27. Detroit: Gale Research, 1998. Literature Resources from Gale. Web. 13 Apr. 2011.
Stein, Karen F. "Amy Tan." Critical Survey of Short Fiction, Second Revised Edition (2001): 1-3. Literary Reference Center Plus. EBSCO. Web. 13 Apr. 2011.
Tan, Amy. “Two Kinds.” Exploring Literature: Writing and Arguing About Fiction, Poetry, Drama and The Essay.4th e. Ed. Frank Madden. New York: Pearson Longman, 2009. 253-261. Print.
Updike, John “A&P.” Exploring Literature: Writing and Arguing About Fiction, Poetry, Drama and The Essay.4th e. Ed. Frank Madden. New York: Pearson Longman, 2009. 496-501. Print.



Click the button above to view the complete essay, speech, term paper, or research paper

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »







This essay is 100% guaranteed.


Title Length Color Rating  
Analysis of A&P, by John Updike Essay - I quit. These words can be attached to so many things in life. At times in life things seem to be different then they really are, for instance the thrill and the excitement of having a summer job or even successfully getting a first job. There are certain moments in a person’s life that will always have an impact on them one could call this a definitive moment or an epiphany. In the short story A&P by John Updike the main character Sammy has an epiphany in that he realizes that a moral line has been crossed in his working environment....   [tags: Essays on A&P] 990 words
(2.8 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay about Human Nature in A&P by John Updikes - John Updlikes, “A&P” is a fictitious narrative that presents an insightful view on some facets of human nature. Our story takes place at an A&P grocery store in a small Massachusetts town. We are taken into the mind of our 19-year old narrator, Sammy, who quickly leaves behind his innocence as a carefree teenager to become a man, with a realistic understanding of being an adult. Throughout this story, Updlike, creates scenes where peoples idealistic views of themselves and social norms, shake the monotonous routine of the A&P....   [tags: gender, social class, self expression]
:: 1 Works Cited
1235 words
(3.5 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Family and Cultural Ties in Amy Tan's Two Kinds and Erdrich's The Red Convertible - People have different culture backgrounds which are very special to them. Usually families’ tradition and thoughts are affected by their cultural backgrounds. Environment is one of the most important factors in a human’s development. When the term "environment" is used, it refers to factors such as family and cultural tie. In today's society, each individual is living his or her life in different a way than others.' Individual’s life choice is generally controlled, learned, influenced, and raised by the cultural background....   [tags: Two Kinds, The Red Convertible] 685 words
(2 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Essay about Different Kinds of Psychological Perspectives - There are many different kinds of psychological perspectives such has the Socio-cultural and Psychoanalytic approach. Looking at these topics within Psychology, it is understood that Psychology is about human behaviour and the environmental factors that influence this behaviour. To understand the case study of Tumi, the perspectives mentioned above will be applied with the aid of psychological knowledge to explain her unfounded experiences. The interpretation of human behaviour varies and so came about different perspectives or aspects of Psychology, one of them being the Psychoanalytic approach discovered by Sigmund Freud in 1917 (Santrock, 2003)....   [tags: anxiety, psychoanalysis, human behaviour]
:: 8 Works Cited
953 words
(2.7 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Affirmation of Adulthood in John Updike's A&P Essay - Affirmation of Adulthood in Updike’s A&P       Researching John Updike’s story, "A&P", I found many readers agreed that the main character Sammy is viewed as a hero or martyr for quitting his job at an A&P store in a northern beach town. I did, however, find that critics disagreed on why Sammy quit. Initially it appears that Sammy quits his job to impress girls who were reprimanded for wearing bathing suits in the A&P.  Sammy did not ultimately quit his job to be the hero for three girls who happened to walk into this A&P....   [tags: A&P Essays]
:: 4 Works Cited
1015 words
(2.9 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Trapped by Society in John Updike's A&P Essay - Trapped by Society in John Updike's A&P       People often take their place in society for granted. They accept that position into which they are born, grow up in it, and pass that position on to their children. This cycle continues until someone is born who has enough vision to step out of his circle and investigate other ways of life in which he might thrive. One such person is embodied in the character of Sammy in A&P, by John Updike. Sammy is the narrator of the story and describes an incident in the store where he encounters a conflict between the members of two completely different worlds the world that he was born into and the world of a girl that captures his mind....   [tags: A&P Essays]
:: 1 Works Cited
785 words
(2.2 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
An Analysis of John Updike's A&P Essay - Interpretation of A&P   This Story takes place in 1961, in a small New England town's A&P grocery store.  Sammy, the narrator, is introduced as a grocery checker and an observer of the store's patrons.  He finds himself fascinated by a particular group of girls.  Just in from the beach and still in their bathing suits, they are a stark contrast, to the otherwise plain store interior.  As they go about their errands, Sammy observes the reactions, of the other customers, to this trio of young women.  He uses the word "Sheep" to describe the store regulars, as they seem to follow one and other, in their actions and reactions.  The girls, however, appear to be unique in all aspects of their...   [tags: John Updike A&P] 715 words
(2 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Two Kinds by Amy Tan Essay - In “Two Kinds,” Amy Tan explores a theme of independence. Jing-me is an impressionable nine year old girl living in an apartment with her parents. She struggles with the high expectations of her mother, to become a prodigy. The conflict results in a rebellious independence. Tan develops Jing-me’s character as willful, defiant, and insecure. To begin, Tan demonstrates that Jing-me’s willfulness stands in the way of her success. For example, after failing many of her mothers prodigy tests, she begins to hate them....   [tags: Two Kinds, Amy Tan]
:: 1 Works Cited
660 words
(1.9 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
John Updike's A&P Essay - John Updike's A&P In a small town everything is familiar and often taken for granted. In John Updike’s short story, A&P, the main character, Sammy, discovers a beauty unlike anything he has ever seen in his small town before. Queenie’s simple magnificence so stuns him that he quits his job in her defense. The narrator says: "Around they come, Queenie still leading the way, and holding a little gray jar in her hand. Slots Three through Seven are unmanned and I could see her wondering between Stokes and me, but Stokesie with his usual luck draws an old party in baggy gray pants who stumbles up with four giant cans of pineapple juice (what do these bums do with all that pineapple juice' I've...   [tags: John Updike A&P Essays] 1029 words
(2.9 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay about A&P - I chose to write about the short story "A&P." The story takes place in a small town in the late 60's, in a vacation town of sorts with a general store, few residents. What I received from the setting, was a very low maintenance town where "everybody knows everybody" (very tight community) most likely old school beliefs and structures (religion, dress code, ethics, morals, ext…strict) and for a short time tourists come to live for a while, and in a sense shake up the foundation of the town a bit with their outside beliefs and values....   [tags: Summary Analysis A&P] 909 words
(2.6 pages)
Good Essays [preview]