Connie description of Arnold Friend, a hunting character personifies the Devil, he goes by the name of Arnold Friend, “Wearing a wig and brought the stems down behind his ears” (Oates 267). Clearly in the bible we know that the devil is the only one who’s is able to appear in different disguise, for he is the only one who can disguise as anything. Arnold Friend is wearing a wig, which is lopsided giving a hint for possible horns. As stated by journalist Kalpakian, “So omnipresent are the evil acts and consequences that the character faces” (1). This gives validation of what evil Connie is dealing with. Her description of Arnold Friend wearing some boots that he consistently has to adjust, “…the boots must have been stuffed with something so that he would seem taller” (Oates 270). This can be perhaps of him having hooves. Another thing that makes Arnold Friend, resemble the devil is that he seems to be very familiar with Connie’s life, and family whereabouts. He is Mr. know it all, the devil is known for knowing everything. “How you find out all that stuff? Connie said… ‘I know everybody’” (Oats 265). His uncanny ability to
The depiction of Arnold Friend runs parallel to the common conception of the Devil. Many aspects of his outward appearance, as well as his behavior, contribute to this by portraying him in a sinister manner. His nose is "long and hawklike" and he has a "slippery smile." His "greasy" boots don't fit him right, "as if his feet [don't] go all the way down." The stereotypical Beelzebub is often seen with hooves. When he draws 'his sign' – the sinister letter X
In many stories, there may be symbols relating to the devil or a savior. In the story “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been,” the character Arnold Friend has many controversial views on whether he is a savior or satanic figure. As the main character in the story, Connie gets taken away by Arnold Friend to get raped. Although she gets raped, Tierce and Crafton argue that he is Connie’s savior because he is the “answer to Connie’s ‘unuttered’ call and to her ‘erotic’ desires”(Tierce, Crafton 222). By taking her away, he saves her from the family she hates and fulfills her sexual desires. Tierce and Crafton also argue that “the description of Arnold Friend also fit(s) Bob Dylan- a type of rock and roll messiah…”(Tierce, Crafton 220). By
Throughout the story, Arnold Friend blatantly displays a sense of evil and the devil in disguise. He also maintains the idea that he is sinister and dark and has no business being around Connie. The hidden figure within Arnold Friend is the devil himself in disguise. His manipulation and keen sense of words lures Connie out into the evil. The numbers and the detailed description of
He presents a façade, and embodies various forms to tempt and entice the struggling sinner. Oates illustrates the allegorical Arnold Friend as a devilish venus flytrap amongst the flowers. He is a charismatic psychopath with eyes "like broken glass that catch light in an amiable way" (Oates 982). He represents sex and rock 'n' roll, a parent's nightmare, and a young girl's lusty teenage dream. It is said the devil cannot enter a home unless invited in. Did Connie welcome him into her life with the playful batting of eyelashes that fateful night at the burger hop? Arnold most certainly believed she did, "Didn't you see me put my sign in the air when you walked by… And he drew an X in the air, leaning out toward her" (Oates 983). Just as the devil bears the mark 666, Arnold posses his own mark "X", a sign that perhaps marks or spares those chosen few out of this world. Arnold is a deceiver with rags stuffed in his boots, coming to take the frail and naive Connie captive for his own sexual pleasures. He strikes fear in her heart, by threatening to kill her family if she does not oblige him. The smooth talking menace invites Connie into her own personal hell, "If the place got lit up with fire, honey, you'd come runnin' out into my arms" (Oates 986). In a elegiac tone, Connie powerlessly walks through the delicate screen door, the threshold, the portal, to the death of innocence. Knowingly or unknowingly, she expresses the heroic gesture of self-sacrifice, and the death of her
Arnold friend is certainly a strange person and in my opinion it made him a better devil because it scared connie when she noticed he had a wig and was much older then he said he was.In today's society there are a lot of men
Another indication that Arnold Friend is the devil is his appearance. If Arnold was the devil he would have to hide what he looks like so Connie would not know who he really was. Arnold’s “whole face was a mask” (par 110) that looked “as if he had plastered make-up on his face” (par. 110). If Arnold Friend were the devil it would make sense that he would be wearing a mask to hide his devilish features. Arnold also was “wearing a wig” (par. 94) to hide his horns on top of his head. If he were the devil, then he would have horns and he tried to cover them up with his wig. Connie saw “how pale the skin around his eyes was, like holes that were not in shadow but instead in light” (par 55). The devil would have strange-looking eyes and this would
We feel, learn, and are confused about things at the same time she does. Since much of the story is limited to her perception, Arnold Friend remains cryptic, malevolent, and also extremely disturbing. A great example of this descriptive point of view is the part in which Connie is paralyzed with trepidation, and fear that she cannot bring herself to call the police. As she picks up the phone to call the police she calls out for her mother, who is at a barbeque with her father and sister. We are told that she is "locked" in a "noisy sorrowful wailing," but the image is so perplexing – how do you get "locked" in a "wailing"? – that it is difficult to interpret exactly what is going on. The misperception the reader feels aids in getting a sense of Connie's
As the story continues, the narrator finally introduces the antoganist. Arnold Friend, who is the second main character on the story. Connie initially thinks he is someone who she can be attracted too. Simply because she thinks they are about the same age. She likes the way he dressed and the way his body looked as well. None the less, he is categorize as a dangerous and creepy person. He has a demonic figure, or perhaps even a demon who tries to scare Connie by the way he refferes to her and knows everything about her and her family. As she continues to intereact more with him while having a conversation outside her home, she identifies how fake he is. Everything about him, the way his hair looks, his clothes and voice identify he is much
“I’ll have my arms so tight around you so you won’t need to try to get away and I’ll show you what love is like, what it does”. A chilling words from a terrifying character Arnold Friend, a name ending with friend we’d think he’d be one of those goofy yet creepy characters or even just plain odd. We should call him Arnold the demon because that is what he seems more like, and not figurlivity he literally a demon! Certain aspects of the story left quite a few hints that Arnold is supernatural figure than an ordinary human.
Arnold Friend’s car symbolizes warnings to Connie, inscribed on the car is a cryptic code and words that if thought about intently have deeper meanings of evil. Arnold’s car has numbers on it that he refers to as a “secret code” (Oates 229), these numbers are 33,19 and 17. These numbers can be interpreted as Arnold’s age; Connie even guessed around 30 for his age (231) and the ages of his previous victims. Connie is 15 years old in the story, if his last two victims were 19 and 17 he could be starting to form a pattern with ages. Arnold has intentions of making Connie a victim. The way Oates’ writes about how Arnold is smiling as if he had ideas he would not put into words and the way he told Connie he wanted to make her his lover (230, 232) make this clear. There are the words “man the flying saucers” (230) on the front bumper of the car which in the time the story was written, 1966, people would say to mean something foreign or crazy. Connie even had the idea
By living a life based on vanity and lust, Connie invites evil into her life. The author indicates that Arnold Friend is Satan by alluding to certain clues the
Arnold and his friend are straight up serial killers going on a killing spree looking for their next victim. The author links religion into the story through Arnold and his friend giving them characteristics similar to the devil in bible stories. Arnold has a very persuasive attitude making people start thinking the way he does. Convincing them to do things they should never do just as in the biblical story of Adam and Eve and sadly Connie was victim to this. For example, when he first appeared to Connie at her house he was dressed like a young individual making the reader and Connie believe he’s just another normal teen.
Connie cried out to her mother, she felt as if something was stabbing her continuously with no tenderness. Additionally, the author says that a noisy sorrow came up around Connie and she became locked inside it. This shows that there was a ghostly intimate and spiritual contact with the inner worlds of Connie, which can be referred to as conflict between her intimate depths and the invisible absorbing dark forces of Arnold.
Through subliminal revelations, Oates slowly expresses the true character of temptation in the form of Arnold Friend. Oates’s eerie introduction of Arnold can be utilized to extrapolate the true meaning of Arnold Friend’s name thus revealing its underlying satanic meaning. When the character Arnold first arrives at Connie’s house, it is stated, “This here is my name, to begin with, he said. ARNOLD FRIEND [...] I wanta introduce myself, I’m Arnold Friend and that’s my real name and I’m gonna be your friend, honey” (Oates 3). When Arnold is introduced he seems genuine although his words quickly spiral towards deception and the irony of his