Where Are You Going Symbolism

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James Tardiff
Instructor Hardie
ENG 113
May 7, 2014

Where are you Going, Where have you been? Allegory?
A short story, Where Are You Going? Where Have You Been? by Joyce Carol Oats can simply be seen as realism, a sad story of a girl taken advantage of. The beginning the story is about a normal family with a self-absorbed fifteen-year-old daughter. Soon after the introduction, the protagonist, Connie, and her friend sneak from the movies to the local burger shack where older boys are known to hang out. When rejecting the wrong man the story quickly turns for the worst, shifting from realism to allegory leading to symbolism of biblical references.
It is about a young girl who does not necessarily get a long with her parents, she even rejects their company when invited to attend a family picnic with them. There are always signs that her parents refute her lifestyle and disagree with her selfish actions. From the very beginning, Connie is portrayed as young girl that enjoys pretending to be older she really is and dressing up like a college student with her friend. Connie’s mother disagrees with her showy choice of style stating, “stop gawking at your self, who are you? You think you’re so pretty? (Oats, 304).” Connie and her friend sneak to the local college “hang-out” to flirt with the older college guys when they say that they are going shopping or to the movies.
After turning down a guy named Arnold at the local “hang-out”, Arnold begins stalking Connie. He would often wait around for her parents to leave the house for the day to watch Connie’s every move. When provided with the opportunity, Arnold insists on taking Connie for a ride in his car. Even though Connie feels suspicious about the offer, she continues to...

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... when writing this short story.

Literature Cited
Coulthard, A.R. "Joyce Carol Oates's "Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" As Pure Realism." Studies In Short Fiction 26.4 (1989): 505-510. Academic Search Complete. Web. 6 May 2014.
The New International Version. Genesis 2:4-3:24. 2011.
Hurley, D.F. "Impure Realism: Joyce Carol Oates's `Where Are You Going.." Studies In Short Fiction 28.3 (1991): 371. Academic Search Complete. Web. 6 May 2014.
Oats, Joyce Carol. Where Are You Going? Where Have You Been?. Literature: An Introduction to Reading and Writing. Ed. Edgar V. Robert Zweig. 10th ed. Boston: Longman, 2012. 303-319.
Urbanski, Marie Mitchell Olesen. "Existential Allegory: Joyce Carol Oates's 'Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?'." Studies In Short Fiction 15.2 (1978): 200. Academic Search Complete. Web. 6 May 2014.
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