Boston College Law School

9. Make a case for interpreting the story as, “Nothing in the story is as it seems; specific actions, people, and places or not as they seem.”

Were are you going? Were have you been ? By Joyoe Carol Oates

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The story's main theme is the difference between appearances and reality. Connie believes herself to be an accomplished flirt; she thinks she can handle anything thrown at her, but as we find out...... that certainly isn't the case. She is easily sucked in by Arnold and manipulated by his deceit.

As for Arnold, the character we initially see as a young man hanging out where the popular kids go....... he's not as young as we think. He is far older than the teenagers he approaches, and he is driven by the desire to corrupt youth and innocence. His ability to pull off this deceit leads others into disaster. Perception is often far different than reality.


Where are you going? Where have you been?