A Perfect Day for Bananafish Characters

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Mrs. Carpenter

Sybil's mother appears briefly: after applying suntan lotion to her daughter's back, she tells her to "run and play" on the beach while she goes back to the hotel for a martini. Like Muriel, Mrs. Carpenter is more interested in her own pleasures than in truly making contact with the innocent person whom she has been placed in charge.

Sybil Carpenter

As her first name suggests, Sybil is a seer or prophet-like character, who is able to "see" the bananafish that Seymour describes to her during their swim. Her opening words ("See more glass") also suggest her ability to perceive the deeper meaning of experience, a quality that many of Salinger's child characters possess—and one that many of his adult characters lack. (Her mother's reaction to her precocious insight is to tell Sybil things like "stop saying that" and then leaving her for a martini...

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This section contains 1,005 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the A Perfect Day for Bananafish Study Guide
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Short Stories for Students
A Perfect Day for Bananafish from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.