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

625 Words 3 Pages
Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been by Joyce Carol Oates

Is Arnold Friend the Devil in disguise in Joyce Carol Oates' short story "Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" If one were to look at the facts surrounding the actual event this story was based on, any assumption that "Friend" was anything but a man would be thrown out due to logic. However, if one were to look at the story alone, he could concede that Friend is indeed the Devil or at least the Devil's angel.

First, there is the physical description of Arnold Friend. His "shaggy, shabby black hair that looked crazy as a wig," (591) his nose, "long and hawk-like," (592) and his eyes that "were like chips of broken glass" (592) all suggest that he is evil in
…show more content…
Besides physical characteristics, the devilish nature of Friend is depicted through his subtle ability to manipulate Connie. When they first meet, Connie is apprehensive of Arnold. Through manipulation, charm, and possibly a spell, Arnold is skillful in influencing Connie, ultimately resulting in her demise. "'Now get up, honey. Get up all by yourself.' She stood" (599). "The kitchen looked like a place she had never seen before" (596). "Her eyes darted everywhere in the kitchen. She could not remember what it was, this room" (597). Common places no longer have any familiarity to her.
Lastly, Oates uses irony and symbolism to convey the possibility that Arnold Friend is the Devil. The main section of the story ironically takes place on Sunday. Sunday is the Holy day and Friend, in all probability, feels that by degrading God, he is proving himself more powerful. Oates uses his name, Friend, as symbolic irony. Arnold is inevitably evil, and Oates uses his name to represent him as a Devil's Advocate playing both sides. "After his hand fell back to his side the X was still in the air, almost visible" (593). The X is a sign of evil, and Friend tells Connie that it is his sign. This could also imply that Friend was putting a "spell" on Connie to make her obey and succumb to his every demand. The numbers (33, 19, 17)

Related Documents

Unduh APK | Big.Game.2014.720p.BluRay.x264-NeZu | Llavero Mercedes, en cuero sintético trenzado, con o sin caja, gran calidad.