Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been? Questions and Answers
by Joyce Carol Oates

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In "Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?," what is it about Connie that attracts Arnold Friend to her?

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Arnold is attracted to Connie's beauty and the innocence of her youth. As the author outlines at the beginning of the story, Connie has the type of long, dark blonde hair that attracts admiring looks—looks which, at the age of 15, she is becoming increasingly aware of. When she goes out to the mall with her friends, for example, the author states that she becomes a completely different person than who she is at home: "her mouth, which was pale and smirking most of the time, but bright and pink on these evenings out."

As an older man—Arnold tells Connie he is 18, but Connie thinks he is closer to 30—Arnold knows that she is putting on an act and that he can manipulate and scare her to come with him. When he states,

Yes, I'm your lover. You don't know what that is but you will . . . I'm always nice at first, the first time. I'll hold you so tight you won't think you have to try to get away or pretend anything because you'll know you can't. And I'll come inside...

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