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by John Updike

A&P Society and Class Quotes

How we cite our quotes: (Paragraph)

Quote #1

The sheep pushing their carts down the aisle – the girls were walking against the usual traffic (not that we have one-way signs or anything) – were pretty hilarious. (5)

Sammy sees most of the people in his world as passive followers – they even navigate the store in the same direction. Sammy dislikes this uniform, homogenized society and enjoys seeing its boring order disrupted.

Quote #2

What he meant was, our town is five miles from a beach, with a big summer colony out on the Point, but we're right in the middle of town, and the women generally put on a shirt or shorts or something before they get out of the car into the street. And anyway these are usually women with six children and varicose veins mapping their legs and nobody, including them, could care less. (10)

Sammy is suggesting that life in town is very different from life out at the beach. Nudity, it seems, is more acceptable the closer you get to the beach, and beachgoers have a very different social scene than those who live in town.

Quote #3

As I say, we're right in the middle of town, and if you stand at our front doors you can see two banks and the Congregational church and the newspaper store and three real-estate offices. (10)

This brief description of the neighborhood lets us know that the store is in a conservative area, where bathing suits in public are definitely frowned upon.

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