Compare And Contrast Paul's Case And A & P

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Adolescence Despite parental efforts to control children, teenage rebellion proves as an unavoidable staple in individuals' maturation. For some, this rebellion proves brief; for others it results in devastation. Regardless, this necessary and natural process often includes defiance of societal expectation in addition to domestic contradiction. Society's typical rejection of teenage rebellion destroys innocence, disturbs peace, and often inhibits social progress. Both Willa Cather’s and John Updike’s early life experiences in discovering their identities reflect in their short stories, “Paul’s Case” and the “A&P”. Born into a strict family, Willa Cather could express the harsh expectations of teenagers through her protagonist, Paul. Willa …show more content…

Sammy’s experiences with the everday shoppers, describing them as “sheep pushing their carts down the aisle” along with the store “having bags of peat moss and aluminum lawn furniture stacked on the pavement”, exemplifies societies orderly fasion where everything remains the same. However, his mundane lifestyle immediately shifts when the three women enter the A&P, showing “the contrast between the usual customers at the A&P and these girls” (McFarland). Sammy represents a typical teenager stuck in a monotonous daily existence who allows himself to embrace rather than reject the teenagers who prove “different” or “progressive”. Sammy’s innocent description of the “long white prima donna legs” gives insight into his “youthful and unromantic descriptive powers” (Mcfarland). When approched for their lack of clothing, Sammy stands up for the girls and quits his job, in an attempt “to not only try to change his own love life, but also the “traditional” perspective” (McFarland). Although appearing heroic, his gesture reflects his selfish impulses to impress the girls. By using his “youthful and unromantic” charachteristics, he loses his job, and the attention of the

In this essay, the author

  • Opines that teenage rebellion is an unavoidable staple in individuals' maturation, and society's rejection of it destroys innocence, disturbs peace and inhibits social progress.
  • Analyzes how willa cather and john updike's early life experiences in discovering their identities reflect in their short stories, "paul’s case" and the "a&p".
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