The Cop and the Anthem

by

O. Henry

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The Window Shopper Character Analysis

When Soapy assumes the role of a “masher” and begins harassing a window shopper on the street, he fails to recognize that this woman is a prostitute. This woman likewise fails to recognize that Soapy is not a potential customer, despite the fact that the two characters, of everyone Soapy speaks to in the story, are the most similar in their social status.

The Window Shopper Quotes in The Cop and the Anthem

The The Cop and the Anthem quotes below are all either spoken by The Window Shopper or refer to The Window Shopper. 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:
Poverty, Homelessness, and Crime Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Modern Library Editions edition of The Cop and the Anthem published in 1994.
The Cop and the Anthem Quotes

A young woman of a modest and pleasing guise was standing before a show window gazing with sprightly interest at its display of shaving mugs and inkstands, and two yards from the window a large policeman of severe demeanor leaned against a water plug […] It was Soapy’s design to assume the role of the despicable and execrated “masher.”

Related Characters: Soapy, The Window Shopper
Page Number: 22
Explanation and Analysis:

In a cigar store he saw a well-dressed man lighting a cigar at a swinging light. His silk umbrella he had set by the door on entering. Soapy stepped inside, secured the umbrella and sauntered off with it slowly. The man at the cigar light followed hastily.

Related Characters: Soapy, The Window Shopper, The Umbrella Man
Related Symbols: The Umbrella
Page Number: 24
Explanation and Analysis:
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The Window Shopper Character Timeline in The Cop and the Anthem

The timeline below shows where the character The Window Shopper appears in The Cop and the Anthem. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
The Cop and the Anthem
Poverty, Homelessness, and Crime Theme Icon
Society, Power, and Class Theme Icon
Community and Home  Theme Icon
...women on the street. Tilting his hat at a “killing cant” and flirting impudently with a woman he finds window-shopping , Soapy’s plan backfires: he has failed to identify the woman as a prostitute, and... (full context)