A&P and Other Stories


"A&P" is a comic short story written by John Updike in 1961. M. Gilbert Porter called the titular A & P in Updike's story "the common denominator of middle-class suburbia, an appropriate symbol for [the] mass ethic of a consumer-conditioned society." According to Porter, when the main character chooses to rebel against the A & P he also rebels against this consumer-conditioned society, and in so doing he "has chosen to live honestly and meaningfully."[1] William Peden, on the other hand, called the story "deftly narrated nonsense...which contains nothing more significant than a checking clerk's interest in three girls in bathing suits."[2]

"A & P", first introduced in The New Yorker on July 22, 1961, also later appeared in the collection Pigeon Feathers.

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