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ENG 002- Major Paper One.docx

ENG 002- Major Paper One.docx - English 002 01 October 2017...

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English 002 01 October 2017 Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been: Good and Evil The idea of good versus evil is best shown when moral actions are contrasted against those actions that can be deemed immoral. In the short story, “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?” by Joyce Carol Oates, the author, can easily see this theme throughout the story. While the actions of some characters can be largely considered immoral, hence evil, others have largely moral actions. Connie’s struggle against Friend can be termed as a perfect example of good versus evil in the story. This study is of the opinion that in the story by Oates, evil triumphs over good. Arnold Friend is presented as an evil person; he largely symbolizes evil in the story. He comes out as one keen on propagating sexual violence against his victim. In his seducing Connie to take a ride with him, he appears to have bad intentions towards her (Oates 455). Connie appears frustrated as she tries to refuse his advances. She even wonders loudly who Friend thought he was to be so irritating. Right from the onset, he promises Connie that he was going to get her. The statement itself sounds like a threat. It turns out that Friend actually intended to get her. The threat is made worse by the fact that at the time it was made, Friend was a total stranger to Connie. Lack of trust in the story can be viewed an indicating the presence of evil. Arnold is presented as a person who cannot be trusted. While Connie liked the way he was dressed she doubted his sincerity as soon as he started laughing. “The way he straightened and recovered from his fit of laughing showed that it had been all fake”
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(Oates 456). To her, it sounded as if the fit and laughter were all a hoax. Connie’s suspicions are aroused when she realizes that Friend actually knew more about her family and friends than she would have expected. “Aunt Tillie’s. Right now they’re uh they’re drinking. Sitting around”, he said vaguely, squinting as if he were staring all the way to town and over to Aunt Tillie’s back yard.” (Oates 459). He specifically knew the exact details of what her family members were attending a barbeque at the time and what they were doing. In all this, the threat of sexual violence is high to Connie. While Friend makes an attempt to appear like he is flirting, the things he was saying were very disturbing to Connie. He is very knowledgeable about Connie. However, he uses his knowledge to frighten her. The fact that he drove a car with a lot of writings that made no sense to Connie made the situation even scarier for her. Evil in the story also takes the form of manipulation. Friend, an older man, plans to take advantage of Connie for her beauty and youth. Although he says he intends to show her what love looks like, one can tell that he does not mean well for her. “I’ll hold
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