Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been by Joyce Carol Oates

1008 WordsJun 20, 20185 Pages
There are always two sides to every story. The short story “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been”, by Joyce Carol Oates is a prefect example of just that. In this short story, the main character is a fifteen year old girl, named Connie. The young adolescent has two sides to herself; one when she is at home and one when she is out with her friends. When Connie is at home, she acts childlike. However, when she goes out she tries to act like an adult by changing her clothes and the way she talks. She has an older sister who shadows her with her smarts, but Connie believes that she is more beautiful and worthy than June. June is twenty-two years old, very well behaved and is actually close with their mother. Connie not only struggles…show more content…
Suddenly her house and kitchen looked like a different place. She tried to call out for help, even tried to call someone on the phone, but Arnold Friend would not let her. As soon as she picked up the phone she felt like Arnold Friend was stabbing her, even though he was standing outside for he promised he would not come inside unless she called someone. This eerie part of the story shows that Arnold Friend is a demonic figure by him just being inside possibly hurting Connie all while standing outside. He threatened her saying that he could hurt her family, or burn her house down which could have meant that he would bring them all to Hell. Towards the end of the story, Arnold Friend 's tune turned a bit more aggressive. He eventually got his way by making Connie his puppet; she moved on on cue with every string he pulled. As Connie got closer to the door, she saw herself leaving, as if she were officially being torn apart from her old ways. She did not recognize anything, her front yard was a foreign landscape to her. Connie knew that by going to Arnold Friend she would never see any of her family again, nor her house with the music still playing in her room. In the beginning of the story, Connie mentioned to her friends how she wished that she could just kill her mother and sometimes herself, just to end it all. At the very end of the story, she places her now relaxed hand over her heart just to notice for the first time that it was not even hers, but
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