Even taking pleasure in the feeling of rejecting them. Connie knows that she is always being compared to her sister June who her mother is
Because the lack of family support and guidance, Connie lies to her parents of her whereabouts, and she sneaks away to local hangouts. While being out, she unfortunately catches the eye of Arnold Friend. This man will erase Connie’s innosense and expose her to how cruel the world can actually be. Many literary
“She was fifteen and she had a quick nervous giggling habit of craning her neck to glance into mirrors or checking other people’s faces to make sure her own was all right” (Oates, 259). Connie didn’t like being compared to her sister June by her mother and felt as if her mother only thought that she sat around all day daydreaming about boys. The only good thing that June did in Connie’s eyes was go out with her friends, which justified Connie being able to go out with hers. Connie would lie about going to the movie with her friend and they would end up going to hang out with older boys at restaurants and in allies until her friends dad would pick them up. One night Connie spent 3 hours with a boy she had met eating at a restaurant and then down an alley to hang out with
Connie’s first encounter with Friend was at a diner when he stated to Connie, “Gonna get you, baby”(pg.1142). Because Connie was use to this type of attention, she did not view it as strange that an older man was calling her in such away. However, if Connie had seen Friend as dangerous instead of just another man, her kidnapping might have been prevented. Later in the story when Friend showed up as Connie’s house, she walked outside and talked to him instead of questioning how he knew where she lived or calling the police. Oates described Connie's interaction with Friend by stating,“Connie liked the way he was dressed, which was the way all of them dressed: tight faded jeans stuffed into black, scuffed boots, a belt that pulled his waist in and showed how lean he was, and a white pullover shirt that was a little soiled and showed the hard muscles of his arms and shoulders”(pg.1145).
That also made her become more vulnerable to the real dangers and the evilness that exists in the world. That danger was represented by an old man who pretends to be an eighteen year old boy that seduced and kidnaped Connie. The end of the story Joyce Carol Oates leaves it open to the readers, because that way it makes the reader think of what might have happened, whether she got raped or whether she is killed, after the main character leaves with the antagonist of the story. Oates shows that ignorance, narcissism and the lack of
The short story “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?” by Joyce Carol Oates can be interpreted in a multitude of ways due to its ambiguity. A psychological lens, however, provides the most accurate viewpoint for analyzing the story as it clarifies certain obscure scenes and actions of Connie. One psychological issue of Connie that is easily inferred from the beginning of the story is her insecurity about her looks. Connie constantly worries about the way that she looks and takes any opportunity to do so, “craning her neck to glance into mirrors or checking other people's faces to make sure her own was all right” (1).
However, this changes when Arnold together with a friend show up at Connie’s home while her parents are away. She realizes there is more to Arnold than meets the eye and that her life and that of her family could be in danger. An article written in an issue of life magazine in 1966
In Joyce Carol Oates’ short story “Where Are You Going? Where Have You Been?” the id, ego, and superego are represented by different characters; the ego portrayed by Connie, June being the superego, and Arthur and Ellie represent the id. The author depicts June as being “plain and chunky and steady” and always praised by their mother (Oates 1). She saved money, helped clean the house and cooked, while “Connie couldn't do a thing” (1).
However, this is countered when Connie notes that “he was much older—thirty, maybe more” (315), a fact that frightens her. What Arnold is to Connie is a challenge of her want to be an adult, and a trail of her ability to deal with adult issue. Such as a man who singles her out sexual reason. Her wish to be an adult is something she seeks while passively avoiding it. Her avoidance is marked by day dreams of puppy love romance, like a typical teenager; yet, her attractive flaunt to be mature is presented as if she seeks to be an
Connie uses her attitude and appearance to attract boys. But she is not aware of the reality of the society in which she lives. Connie is living in a fantasy world, but when she gets trapped by Arnold Friend she is put into a scary reality. There
Arnold Friend was there to take Connie away; away from her childhood and home, which never quite felt like home until her fantasy world deteriorated and reality set it. The next moment is pivotal, this is when Connie forgets her hedonism and becomes something of much more substance. Before Connie studies Arnold Friend’s abnormal personality and erratic behavior she is fascinated by him and even worries that she is ill prepared for this
In Oates’ story “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?” , the story mainly focuses on the conflict and main plot of Smooth Talk. “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?” explains Connie’s relationship to her family members, basically describing that she’s a basic adolescent that desires to be treated like an adult but lacks the maturity and doesn’t want the responsibilities, still claiming her freedom (or at least attempting to). One Sunday her family leaves to a barbeque Connie refused to go to and a familiar stranger drives up to her house.
Joyce Carol Oates uses physical characterization to foreshadow early on what truly is going to happen to Connie. Arnold is hiding things about his physical appearance. No matter what Connie says or does, Arnold keeps talking, and yet he reveals nothing about himself. He never physically asks Connie to join him, but his words have the same force and pull as the actions he only threatens to take. "Soon
(Oates 12), which means that Connie falls asleep after her family left. Then right in the same paragraph, Oates also tells us that “when [Connie] opened her eyes she hardly knew where she was... She shook her head as if to get awake.” This line shows that Connie is at the start of her dream because the only time we don’t know a place is when we is
In Joyce Carole Oates short story,” Where Are You Going, Where Have you Been”, the battle of perception and reality comes into play when Connie ,a young teenage girl tries to portray herself as an adult by using her appearance as well as attitude in order to attract the attentions of older men. This fantasy world of Connie’s is eventually overthrown by Arnold Friend, causing her to snap back into the realization that her sexual fantasies will soon be a reality. This overall theme of sexual reality is reinforced by the different uses of music and character symbolisms of Connie and Arnold