The Psyche of a Perfect Victim.pdf

The Psyche of a Perfect Victim.pdf - Meghan McManus English...

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Meghan McManus English 110-11 Professor Cartledge November 13, 2016 The Psyche of a Perfect Victim “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been” is the dark story of Connie, a beautiful 15- year-old girl growing up in a mid-century, Midwest suburb. The story behind Connie starts by describing her everyday life, and the differences between her home life, and her life outside of the house. It quickly becomes apparent the audience that Connie is not just a typical teenager struggling with boys and friends. There are deep-seated issues that lead to the future encounter with Arnold Friend. In Oates’ “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been” and in Nicole Holmen’s interpretation for “Inquiries Journal” Connie is depicted as a young girl with severe self-esteem, issues, family problems and a fear of intimacy? In this interpretation, self-esteem plays a large part in delving into the psyche of Connie. Connie is depicted as a nervous young girl who was always looking into mirrors to make sure her beauty is still intact, and because of this her mother is always quick to criticize her. “Stop gawking at yourself. Who are you? You think you’re so pretty?’ She would say. Connie would raise her eyebrows at these old familiar complaints and look right through her mother, into a dark vision of herself as she was right at that moment: she knew she was pretty and that was
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everything. Her mother had been pretty once too…but now her looks were gone, and that was why she was always after Connie” (Oates 249). Her idea that “beauty is everything” plays into a fragile sense of self, and extreme insecurity. Night after night she goes out with her friend, dressed to draw eyes, and spends time with different boys. The attention she gets from these
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