Joyce Carol Oates

Better Essays
English 126
29 November 2012 Joyce Carol Oates, The Author of "Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?” Many critics have found that the possibility of the psychological changes of a teenager is a discussable topic to learn and argue about. Connie, the young teenage girl in the story of “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?” faces an unpredictably-dangerous situation that challenges her knowledge of insecurity and adulthood. As a matter of the fact, Connie is molded into the central character of the story and at the same time she functions as a character representing a normal teenager. Any other teenagers in another family could be the next “Connie”, who could get confusion with his or her psychological concern. There are several factors discussed below, arguing to be contributed to Connie’s psychological senses and behaviors: To begin with, the uncommunicative issue among Connie’s family results in her rebellious behaviors. In the reading about” Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been,” Connie’s mother shut at her,” Why don’t you keep your room clean that your sister? How’ve you got your hair fixed—what the hell stinks? Hair spray? You don’t see your sister using that junk” (505). According to this quote, it is obvious that Connie is from a traditional-minded family. The mom always compares Connie to her sister, June who has been a good girl in her life: she has a stable job, and is responsible and respectable to her family and society. She believes that a normal child is supposed to follow the arrangements made by his or her parents and obey the social standard, just like Connie’s sister does. Feeling her expectation cannot be reached because of Connie’s disobedience, her mom begins to blame on Connie harder and harder. Connie said to her friend: “She makes me want to throw up sometimes” (505.)



Cited: Oates, Joyce Carol. “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?” Compact Literature. Ed Laurie G. Kirszner and Stephen R. Mandell. Boston: Wadsworth Publishing 8th edition, 2013. 129-133. Print. Kalpakian, Laura. “From A Review of Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been? Selected Early Stories.” Compact Literature. Ed Laurie G. Kirszner and Stephen R. Mandell. Boston: Wadsworth Publishing 8th edition, 2013. 129-133. Print. Urbanski, Marie Mitchell Olesen. “Existential Allegory.” “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?”  Ed. Elaine Showalter.  New Brunswick: Rutgers UP, 1994. 75-79.

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Better Essays

    and heartaches, but then there is always the plus size of love and rewards. This is no exception between Nola and her mother Mrs. Dietrich, characters in “Shopping by Joyce Carol Oates. Nola is obviously trying to spread her wings and fly into a young woman, however; Mrs. Dietrich is having a really hard time letting her go. In Oates short story one is exposed to the hardship that a mother has in watching her daughter transition from a girl into a young woman. The shopping trip allows Mrs. Dietrich…

    • 941 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Good Essays

    Joyce Carol Oates Outline

    • 609 Words
    • 3 Pages

    How Joyce Carol Oates Life Affected her Work I. The novels "Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" and "Life After High School" relayed Joyce Carol Oates belief that straying from a sheltered life leads to a ruined one. A. Her works delayed this theme through connotation. B. Although it was only hinted at, her belief in obedience was rooted deep in her stories. II. Oates farm-life, small town upbringing taught her not to stray from the strict discipline she lived by…

    • 609 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Better Essays

    Postmodernism For my short essay I will focus on a postmodern reading of Joyce Carol Oates, "How I Contemplated the World from the Detroit House of Corrections and Began My Life Over Again." More precisely, as a postmodern text. Postmodernism refers to texts that reject coherence in a narrative, objective truth, and show doubts about the reliability of language to communicate. Postmodern techniques that are evident in Oates story were fragmented narrative, disrupted time sequence, disunified subject…

    • 1981 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Good Essays

    Analysis A relationship between a mother and daughter may not be perfect at all times. There are many things that can make the job of being a mother tough and one of them is being a single mother. In the short story, “Shopping” by Joyce Carol Oates there is no exception to modern day hardships that come along the road of motherhood. The turbulence in Nola and Mrs. Dietrich relationship is shown during their shopping trip to the mall where Nola hardly speaks to her mother. Mrs. Dietrich refuses…

    • 1363 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    Americans stop to think if they are following a bandwagon or an unnecessary tradition? Joyce Carol Oates refers to her characters as them in her 1969 novel them. The Great Depression was a time when women especially, desired to have a spouse and family to take care of. Throughout the novel, some of Oates’s characters, such as Loretta, become one of them by achieving a certain aspect of their American Dream. Thus, Joyce Carol Oates’s philosophy of writing novels, essays, and short stories as versatile and…

    • 2196 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    who invited the stranger into their home. Arguably he was the one who forced both of them to finally acknowledge what truly did happen when they were all still alive in that house years ago, all of the anger, all of the abuse and even death. Joyce Carol Oates certainly seems to offer enough evidence for the reader to arrive at this conclusion. She creates a setting including actual and implied violent incidents and characters in torment, not only the supernatural ghostly visitor, but also the couple…

    • 214 Words
    • 1 Page
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Good Essays

    Joyce Oates

    • 838 Words
    • 4 Pages

    The Lady with the Pet Dog Joyce Carol Oates The Lady with the Pet Dog Joyce Carol Oates The Lady with the Pet Dog Terms Stream-of-consciousness technique: A technique in which the author takes a reader inside a character’s mind to reveal perceptions, thoughts, and feelings on a conscious or unconscious level Point of view: Refers to who tells the story and how it is told, most notably governing whether a story is told in first- or third-person…

    • 838 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    Joyce Carol Oates’s “Four Summers” I found the following questions, taken from James H. Pickering’s 10th edition of Fiction 100: An Anthology of Short Stories, to be very useful when thinking about the story “Four Summers” by Joyce Carol Oates: “What similarities and differences exist in each of the four episodes? What changes take place? What remains the same? How does the author organize each of the four sections? How old is Sissie in each? Is Oates’ narrative technique in each section appropriate…

    • 384 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Good Essays

    Tusk By Joyce Carol Oates Abnormal and captivating. These would be some of the keywords of the essay Tusk by Joyce Carol Oates. It tells the story of a young boy named Roland Landrau, but he addresses himself as Tusk. Tusk is somewhat Roland’s alter-ego where he in his mind is the cool guy at school. Already in the first sentence of the story, it pulls the reader in and reeks of something wrong and something exciting. “As the knife fitted into Tusk’s hand, an idea fitted into his head”[1]…

    • 977 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    sources to reinforce your ideas, or you may find that you are better able to articulate your point in opposition to these essays. Directions 1) The primary text for this assignment is the short story “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" by Joyce Carol Oates (L&WP 199-210). 2) Once you have done some preliminary writing about your thesis, supporting points, and evidence from "Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?," you will read the journal articles uploaded to the “Information” page on Blackboard…

    • 940 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays