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Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?

Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?

by Joyce Carol Oates

Freedom and Confinement Quotes

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #4

[Connie] had the idea that he had driven up the driveway all right but had come from nowhere before that and belonged nowhere and that everything about him and even about the music that was so familiar to her was only half real. (94)

Connie may feel that her home is a prison (see the second quote above), but the outside world, the "nowhere" of Arnold, is just as terrifying.

Quote #5

"—going to call the police—"

"Soon as you touch the phone I don't need to keep my promise and can come inside [...] anybody can break through a screen door and glass and wood and iron or anything else if he needs to, anybody at all, and specially Arnold Friend." (116-118)

Even the threat of the police can't keep Arnold at bay, suggesting that he is somehow above or beyond the law.

Quote #6

A noisy sorrowful wailing rose all about her and she was locked inside it the way she was locked inside this house. (144)

Connie's terror is often described through images of confinement or imprisonment. Here the home is both her haven and her prison: it protects her against Arnold at the same time that it traps her.

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