Where are you going where have you been. Symbolism in "Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been" Essay Example 2022-12-11

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"Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" is a short story by Joyce Carol Oates that was first published in 1966. It tells the story of Connie, a 15-year-old girl who is coming of age and struggling to find her place in the world.

The story is set in the early 1960s, in a small town in the United States. Connie is a typical teenage girl, obsessed with her appearance and her relationships with boys. She spends her days flirting with boys and trying to look attractive, and she often ignores the concerns and warnings of her family.

One day, Connie meets a strange man named Arnold Friend who begins to stalk her. Arnold is a creepy, older man with a distorted face and a distorted voice, and he seems to know a lot about Connie and her habits. Despite the obvious danger, Connie is drawn to Arnold and begins to engage with him, even though she knows she should stay away.

As the story progresses, it becomes clear that Arnold is a predator who is trying to lure Connie into his grasp. Connie's shallow and self-absorbed behavior has left her vulnerable to Arnold's manipulation, and she ultimately pays a terrible price for her lack of awareness and caution.

The story serves as a cautionary tale about the dangers of ignoring one's instincts and not paying attention to the warnings of others. It also serves as a commentary on the perils of adolescence and the importance of being aware of one's surroundings and the people around us.

Overall, "Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" is a powerful and thought-provoking story that speaks to the timeless struggles of growing up and the importance of making wise choices in life.

"Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been" Literary Analysis

where are you going where have you been

He wasn't tall, only an inch or so taller than she would be if she came down to him. He sat backwards on his stool, turning himself jerkily around in semicircles and then stopping and turning back again, and after a while he asked Connie if she would like something to eat. Twain based his works on realistic yet colloquial American leading to an increase in the national voice among the American writers of his age. The left rear fender had been smashed and around it was written, on the gleaming gold background: DONE BY CRAZY WOMAN DRIVER. Evidently, Oates seems to have mastered the art of literal realism. She watched herself push the door slowly open as if she were back safe somewhere in the other doorway, watching this body and this head of long hair moving out into the sunlight where Arnold Friend waited.

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Where Are You Going Where Have You Been Essay Examples

where are you going where have you been

However, she can see that he is probably closer to, and maybe older than, 30. They must have been familiar sights, walking around the shopping plaza in their shorts and flat ballerina slippers that always scuffed the sidewalk, with charm bracelets jingling on their thin wrists; they would lean together to whisper and laugh secretly if someone passed who amused or interested them. Six years, her grandmother also gave Oates her first typewriter. Unlike the generation before them, young people in this era were increasingly turning to the birth control pill and having sex outside of meaningful relationships, particularly on college campuses. He wagged a finger and laughed and said, "Gonna get you, baby," and Connie turned away again without Eddie noticing anything. The story is set in the 1960s, which was a time of great change in America. The fact that popular places are portrayed as religious symbols emphasizes the false display of their greatness.


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JOYCE CAROL OATES: WHERE ARE YOU GOING, WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN?

where are you going where have you been

Her bright green blouse was all wet. Oates based the story and the character of Arnold Friend on real life killer Charles Schmid, who murdered at least three girls in Tucson, Arizona between 1964 and 1966. He took off the sunglasses and she saw how pale the skin around his eyes was, like holes that were not in shadow but instead in light. Now that Connie has decided to leave the house, Friend compounds her estrangement from her family, home, and childhood by negating her past and future. I never needed to look anymore. Lots of young girls try to become independent earlier than it is possible.

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where are you going where have you been

Connie is now able to identify false aspects of his appearance, most importantly that he is a grown man and not a kid her own age, and that he has clearly made an effort to alter his appearance. When she catches a glimpse of Ellie, who is listening to music inside the car, she realises that he is also much older, and has the face of an immature forty-year-old man. She shook her head as if to get awake. This is an implication that Oates takes the readers into her personal life thoughts without having to mention that she is doing so. After his hand fell back to his side the X was still in the air, almost visible. When Connie again refuses, he takes off his sunglasses, and Connie notices that the skin around his eyes is very pale. He was the first popular author to come from the interior of the country.

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Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been? Summary & Analysis

where are you going where have you been

Instead of validating herself through more substantial means—such as the religious devotions she offhandedly invokes—Connie is left with a poor defense. He grinned to reassure her and lines appeared at the corners of his mouth. She is unsatisfied with her family, especially her mother, and seeks fulfillment elsewhere. She loves listening to music and is essentially a typical teenager. Something roared in her ear, a tiny roaring, and she was so sick with fear that she could do nothing but listen to it—the telephone was clammy and very heavy and her fingers groped down to the dial but were too weak to touch it.

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Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?

where are you going where have you been

William Dean Howells was the first American writer to engage in literal realism. He listens to music and mostly stays back as Arnold tries to smooth talk his way to get Connie in the car with them. Arnold tries to convince Connie to come out of her house but she is still unsure and slightly unsettled. Her mother was so simple, Connie thought, that it was maybe cruel to fool her so much. I thank you sweetheart," he said with a mock bow, but again he almost lost his balance.

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Symbolism in "Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been" Essay Example

where are you going where have you been

When used in literature realism refers to the portrayal of real life. This is an implication that, even when realist literal works are based on true events, they are different from reporting because of the fact that these stories have to be retold with fiction characters. The driver's glasses were metallic and mirrored everything in miniature. It is important to note that realism is a fascinating form of art, and the works by Oates and other writers in history have been effective in proving so. As time went by there were new writers who have found better ways of using literal realism for the depiction of real occurrences in highly captivating ways. Read more about how to address your. In my story, which was first published in 1966 and many times reprinted, the life that my teenage character knew is about to end.

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Where have we been? Where ARE we going?

where are you going where have you been

Oates uses numerous devices to convey the message of the text in an engaging manner. I had to wash my hair first—'' She spoke in a dry, rapid voice, hardly raising it for him to hear. His staring at her and also grins at her. She cried out, she cried for her mother, she felt her breath start jerking back and forth in her lungs as if it were something Arnold Friend was stabbing her with again and again with no tenderness. Some grudge or something? He touched the sunglasses perched up on top of his head as if to make sure they were still there.


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"Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" Ending and Main Scenes [Analysis Essay]

where are you going where have you been

He looked as if he probably did hard work, lifting and carrying things. Connie leaves the house, watching herself in the third person. Among the first writers to use literal realism was Marie-Henri Beyle, whose pen name was Stendhal and Alexander Pushkin. She feels hollow and thinks of how she will never see her mother or sleep in her own bed again. He resumed his erect position and tried to force his shoulders back. Connie is reluctant to go for a drive with them, and is suspicious when Arnold reveals how much he knows about her life and friends. As a fifteen-year-old girl who struggles to get along with her family and enjoys nothing more than spending time with her friends and flirting with boys at the plaza, Connie is highly attuned to music and the affect it has on her.

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Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been? Study Guide

where are you going where have you been

Sometimes they did go shopping or to a movie, but sometimes they went across the highway, ducking fast across the busy road, to a drive-in restaurant where older kids hung out. She stared at Arnold Friend. Then the vision seemed to get clear and he nodded energetically. Like Letters in Running Water: A Mythopoetics of Curriculum. Whatever Connie said was believed without further questioning, inquiry and that is not how it is supposed to be, but actions has consequences and the consequences came in the most unexpected way.

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