Do some of these same expectations in "Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" still hold true for today's young women?Do some of these same scenarios in "Where Are You Going, Where Have You...

Do some of these same expectations in "Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" still hold true for today's young women?

Do some of these same scenarios in "Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" still hold true for today's young women?

Asked on by ontherocks

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mwestwood's profile pic

mwestwood | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

Absolutely.  There is a recurring lack of meaningful communication among teens and their parents nowadays.  With teens immersed in their technological devices and the lure of thousands of "friends" in cyberspace, opportunities for predatory types are endless.  Children who have had little communication with parents are naive as a result and very vulnerable to such predators.

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

I think that there has to be a bit of clarification in this question. The idea of incorporating "expectations" in the question almost makes it as if Connie failed to adhere to expectations, resulting in her victimization at the hands of Arnold and Ellie.  I would probably enhance the question in suggesting if the same scenarios exist for adolescents today.  In this, I would say that the answer is in the affirmative.   Connie's preoccupation with her own sense of self in the eyes of others, lacking a type of grounded identity that cannot be permeated from the outside world, helps to make her susceptible to Arnold's predatory nature.  Connie's indulgence in "trashy dreams" and ensuring that she was always seen as a "pretty flirt" is a vision of consciousness that lacks any sort of grounding or psychological foundation.  It is because of this that Arnold is able to lure her in the first place, as he proves to be very skilled in being able to play her own game and end up victimizing her.  In the end, I think that there is an expectation brought out in the short story that young people can be as manipulated by those older than them as easily today as they could be in the time period in which Oates is writing.

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