Character Analysis Of Connie From 'Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?'

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Connie from “Where are you going, Where have you been?” by Joyce Carol Oates represents a situation opposite of that which Pecola is subject to. Connie “knew she was pretty and that was everything” (Seagull Reader 337). She had “long dark blonde hair that drew anyone’s eye to it” (337). She lived with her parents and sister in a comfortable home. She went shopping with her best girl friends. She was everything that Pecola laid awake dreaming about at night. She was seemingly everything that society praised in a fifteen year old girl.
Connie’s life, as easy as it may seem, was not free of confusion and controversy. Her social life and her life at home were in constant opposition. The things she wore “looked one way at home and one way when …show more content…

He appears to be a normal boy around the age of Connie and she “liked the way that he dressed, the way that they all dressed” (343). His appearance as a popular teenager allows him to create a connection with Connie and to gain a little bit of her trust.
As Connie talks with Arnold friend more his true motives become clear. He wants Connie to get in the car with him. Arnold tells Connie that he “took special interest in [her], such a pretty girl, and [he] found out all about [her]” (344). At first, this is taken by her as flattery. As the story progresses though, this comment becomes more menacing. Not only does Arnold know her name but he knows a remarkable amount about her family as well. His appearance as well isn’t as genuine as Connie originally thought he was “much older … thirty, maybe more” (346).
Eventually, Arnold Friend is able to make Connie feel powerless enough to give into his demand and leave with him. At this point in the story it is apparent that it is not only a ride in the car, but rather Arnold kidnapping Connie. The importance of this story in not the ending but rather the fault in Connie’s perception that allowed the ending to happen. This is a result of the original little bit of trust that Arnold gains from Connie. This trust is the only factor keeping Connie from shutting the door, running inside and calling the cops right from the …show more content…

She is a vain girl trusting in the power of both beauty and conformity. Arnold is able to come off as normal simply because he is able to conform for society’s view of a cool teenage guy. This ability gains him access to Connie.
When analyzing Connie and what becomes of her, it is easy to dismiss her misfortunes due to her young age of fifteen. This dismissal though, neglects to realize that the actual problem with Connie is not of her own accord. She is simple shoved to this mindset by the popular culture around her. This society connects a look with a typical teenage guy and therefore Connie does too. This uncovers a deep problem with popular culture: it can easily be used to hide behind. Connie uses it to gain popularity in every situation, whereas Arnold uses it to mask his age, danger, and gain

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