"Where are you going where have you been?" is a short story about a young 15 year old girl who is trying to fit in with the rest of the world, and is very preoccupied with her appearance and living in this pop cultural fantasy. Connie is always ignoring her mother 's criticism about wanting her to be more like her older sister, June, who is no longer living a life of fantasy and has her act together.. One night, a boy named Eddie invites Connie to eat dinner with him, and Connie leaves her friend at the restaurant’s counter to go with him. As Connie and Eddie leave the restaurant, she sees a man in a gold convertible in the parking lot. He smiles at her and says, “Gonna get you, baby.”. Connie confused, walks away quickly confused not really knowing what actually happened, and Eddie notices nothing. They spend three hours of their night at dinner, and end up going to a nearby alley living in that fantasy of being that mature woman who knows what a man wants. One day, Connie 's parents and June leave her at home to go to a family barbeque leaving her all by herself. While she was at home alone, she was listening to her radio when out of nowhere she hears a car pull up to the front of her house. Startled, she looks out of the window to see
In “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been,” Connie is viewed by the readers as being in a state of unconsciousness, which is actually a nightmare, and it shows her the reality of a life when girls desire to grow up too fast. In the beginning, the author, Carol Oates, describes Connie as “She wore a pullover jersey blouse that looked one way when she was at home and another way when she was away from home.
self esteem shown with the use of narration, but the reader also learns what Connie spends her
This is evident in Connie when she looks in the mirror and is displeased with the awkward angle she sees and when she notices that peoples’ eyes change as they pass by her on the street. It is also apparent that a mother’s role is important in shaping their daughter into a young woman. In Connie’s case, her mom steps in by scolding her for thinking she is pretty and by always comparing her to her older sister, June. Her mother is depicted as a shadowy figure and remains nameless, except for being called “mom” by Connie and June. The strained relationship between Connie and her mother affects the relationships she ensues with all of the other women she is involved with throughout the story, like June, whose relationship she describes as a tugging war—like they are, “struggling over something of little value to either of them,” which, in the end, proves to be their mother (Oates). As the story continues, Connie starts to devalue her mother’s opinions and because of this is finally able remember that she is pretty. By then, it is clear that Connie’s attempt to fill the void of love and acceptance stems from the lack of it she never received from her
“Where are you going, where have you been?” is a deep story that takes you on a rebellious trip as the character goes through her own self-created illusions to come to terms with her sexual inexperience. She is confused between what is real and what is not real by a dream that is a manifestation of Connie’s desires for attention from the opposite sex. Through this journey, she finds herself and leaves her selfishness behind.
“Where are going, where have you been?” is a short story that was written by Joyce Carol Oates. She is an American author born in the year 1938 in Lockport, New York. Oates has published a number of novels and many books of poetries, short stories, and nonfiction. The main character in the Carol’s story is Connie, even though there are others, such as Connie’s mother, Connie’s sister called June, Arnold Friend, who is a friend of Ellie, and Ellie, who is a friend of Connie (Gratz 55).
Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been is not your typical sympathetic toned short story. The tale takes place in the 1960’s suburbs, most likely a modest town in America. The reader can assume this is a small metropolitan neighborhood, since the setting is abundant with movie theaters, drive-in restaurants and shopping malls. Houses in this town are described as ranch-style homes, and almost allow the reader to feel a sense of security. The story begins with Connie, a 15 year old narcissistic, know-it-all whose mind is filled with trashy daydreams. Connie is the story’s central character, and can be defined as a teenager who wants to be seen as a mature young lady, rather than a child. She is constantly trying to create an attractive grown-up persona through the way she dresses, and how she behaves aiming to get the attention of older boys. Although Connie is a pretty girl with flowing blond hair, she deceives her parents, who pay little attention to
“From the outset of the narrative, members of Connie's family recognize their powerlessness and thus their difference from her. Her mother and sister are not attractive, so they do not really count; and her father, who spends most of his time at work, is weak.” (Urbanski 1). Connie did not look anything similar to her family, she is much prettier and has a better personality. Connie did not want to be like the rest of her family, she wanted to be better and prettier than her sister and even her mother. Her family was still in the early sixties trend, while Connie despised the way they acted and dressed. Even Connie’s taste in music pulled her further from her family. Her mother despises the way the admires herself, yet her father is not talked about much. “Connie’s father doesn’t care where she has been, and her mother, who the story implies was much like Connie when she was younger, takes only perfunctory interest in where she’s going”(Coulthard 507). Although she is always fighting with her family, she never meant for her actions to affects them in the way they did. She even clinged to them for security in her most traumatic times.
Charles Baudelaire once said, “la plus belle des ruses du diable est de vous persuader qu'il n'existe pas. (the devil’s finest trick is to persuade you that he does not exist).” The deceit that Connie experiences throughout the story influences the behaviors and perspectives that she has on her own life, changing the initial thoughts that she had towards her family. In the short story, “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?” by Joyce Carol Oates, Connie encountered a guy named Eddie where they spent a few hours in a restaurant that later led them to being in an alley. Though this moment seemed to of little significance to Connie, an incident with a strange man, Arnold Friend, later on in the story left Connie with an unsettling
Connie is a very apprehensive girl who needs attentiveness and to be loved by humans. Her family does not show her this at home, so when she goes out with her friends she makes sure to get boys attention. Connie is often disrespected in her household by her mom, which makes her insecure and vulnerable to boys. Her mom compares her to her sister, June, and says things such as (“Why don’t you keep your room clean like your sister? How’ve you got your hair fixed-what the hell stinks? Hair spray? You don’t see your sister using that
Oates begins the story depicting an image of Connie and her narcissism, how “she had a quick nervous giggling habit of craning her neck to glance into mirrors, or checking other peoples faces, to make sure her own was all right.” (Kirszner 453). Connie’s mother was always getting on to her about being so artificial and comparing Connie to her older sister, age 24, June. June does not spend a lot of time on her looks, she has a good job, cleans the house, and has a good relationship with their mother. Connie, on the other hand, does not have a good relationship with her mother, and at one point she even wishes her mother dead as well as herself (Kirszner 453). The father works all the time and during the time he is home for dinner he reads the newspaper and then goes to bed (Kirszner 453). The relationship with the father is almost non-existent. In addition to a deficient family environment, this was
Joyce Carol Oates was born in Lockport, New York to a Catholic family in 1938. While attending Syracuse University, she won a “Mademoiselle Magazine Award” for fiction. She also graduated with top honors at Syracuse University. After she graduated from Syracuse she received her master’s degree in English from the University of Wisconsin. With this degree, she went on to teach at several universities such as Detroit, Windsor, and Princeton. As a writer, she has produced more than twenty-five collections of stories, and forty novels. Joyce Oates was a winner of a National Book Award in 1970. Some of her novels include “Because It Is Bitter, and Because It Is My Heart (1990)”, “Black Girl/White Girl (2006)”, “The Gravedigger’s Daughter (2007)”, and “A Fair Maiden (2010)”. She writes poetry, plays, and literary criticism as well.
“Where are you Going, Where Have You Been?” is a story written in 1966 by Joyce Carol Oates. It was originally published in Epoch magazine, but now it is in many short story anthologies. The story tells of a young girl named Connie, who doesn’t want to grow up, and is kidnapped by Arnold Friend one day when she is home alone. It is based on an American serial killer Charles Schmid, who lured young women to the desert where he murdered them. I first read this story last year in a fiction and nonfiction class, and I fell in love with it. I couldn’t explain why; after all, it’s a sad story, isn’t it? Still, I love it because Oates uses characters, plot, and imagery to craft a captivating story.
Connie is an average fifteen year old girl. Everyone has desires Connie is no exception; she wants boys and freedom. Her conflict is what started her motives for what she wants. Connie feels trapped in her own home and she does not think too highly about herself. Like most girls, she is interested in boys and she infatuated with her looks. She “glances into mirrors or checking other people’s faces to make sure her own was all right (Oates 305).” From what we can infer from the text, Connie has very low self-esteem. People who have low self-esteem tend to not think very highly about themselves and constantly worry what people think of her. June’s older sister is her foil, different in every way. Even to the point of the parents are more in favor
“Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been" by Joyce Carol Oates (1966) Is a story of a fifteen year old girl named connie who is naive and self-centered, through her search of independence she is murdered.