Joyce Carol Oates' Where Are You Going? Where Have You Been? Essay example

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Connie, the main character in Joyce Carol Oates' "Where Are You Going? Where Have You Been" is a fifteen-year-old girl, just realizing her beauty. It is summer vacation, and she is spending her time either with boys or daydreaming about them. Connie is a typical teenage girl with a desperate need for independence. She does not get along with her mother, and her father is seldom around. He works a great deal of the time, and when he comes home, he likes to eat and go to bed. Connie has a girlfriend who she enjoys going to the mall with. While at the mall, the girls like to meet boys and watch movies. It is a place where the girls can express themselves in a way different from the ways in which they portray themselves at home. The story's …show more content…

11). Connie is fixated on her beauty and the role beauty plays in life. The first thing she thinks about when the two boys that she has never seen before pull up her driveway is how she looks. Some may say that because of the lack of control Connie possesses over her beauty, Arnold Friend, her eventual abductor, is attracted to her. He sees her naivety and sets forth to capture it. Like many teenagers, music plays a large role in Connie's life. She drifts off into daydreams and desires when listening to music. It plays in her head, even when there is no music around. She dreams of boys and love, "sweet, gentle, the way it was in movies and promised in songs" (par. 12). When Arnold and his friend Ellie first pull up into Connie's driveway, the music on the radio has an effect on her. Like many teenagers, Connie is intrigued by the music. It allows a connection between her and the strangers in her driveway. She becomes interested in the boys. They listen to the same station on Ellie's transmitter radio that Connie plays in the house. Although she has never spoken with them before, Connie feels more comfortable and less tense as she begins to listen to the music from Ellie's transmitter radio and the music coming from inside her home as they blend into one sound. Because of Connie's relaxing state, she allows herself to become intrigued with Arnold and

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