A&P

Lengel Character Analysis

Lengel is the A&P's manager. Also a Sunday school teacher, he runs the A&P with a watchful eye, and Sammy describes him as "dreary." Lengel acts as a kind of force for conformity, and reprimands the girls for wearing their bathing suits into the store, embarrassing Queenie and, ultimately, causing Sammy to quit.

Lengel Quotes in A&P

The A&P quotes below are all either spoken by Lengel or refer to Lengel. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Growing Up Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Fawcett Columbine edition of A&P published in 1996.
A&P Quotes

"Girls, I don't want to argue with you. After this come in here with your shoulders covered. It's our policy."

Related Characters: Lengel (speaker), Queenie
Related Symbols: Bathing Suits
Page Number: 194
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

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The girls, and who'd blame them, are in a hurry to get out, so I say "I quit" to Lengel quick enough for them to hear, hoping they'll stop and watch me, their unsuspected hero. They keep right on going, into the electric eye […]

Related Characters: Sammy (speaker), Queenie, Lengel
Page Number: 195
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

"Sammy, you don't want to do this to your Mom and Dad," he tells me. It's true, I don't. But it seems to me that once you begin a gesture it's fatal not to go through with it. I fold the apron, "Sammy" stitched in red on the pocket, and put it on the counter, and drop the bow tie on top of it.

Related Characters: Sammy (speaker), Lengel (speaker)
Page Number: 196
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

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Lengel Character Timeline in A&P

The timeline below shows where the character Lengel appears in A&P. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
A&P
Sex, Gender, Power Theme Icon
Class Theme Icon
Lengel, the store's manager and a dreary Sunday school teacher, comes inside the A&P after haggling... (full context)
Sex, Gender, Power Theme Icon
Individualism and Ethics Theme Icon
Class Theme Icon
Lengel repeats that the store's not a beach, which strikes Sammy as funny and makes him... (full context)
Individualism and Ethics Theme Icon
Class Theme Icon
The store is quiet after this scene, with the customers nervously converging on Stokesie's lane. Lengel asks Sammy if he's rung up the purchase yet, and Sammy responds that he hasn't... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Appearances and Inner Lives Theme Icon
Individualism and Ethics Theme Icon
Sammy informs Lengel that he didn't have to embarrass the girls, but Lengel replies that the girls were... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Individualism and Ethics Theme Icon
Class Theme Icon
...but they're gone. Looking back through the windows into the A&P, Sammy can see that Lengel has taken his spot at the cash register. As he watches Lengel, whose back looks... (full context)