Where are You Going, where Have You Been?: Selected Early Stories

Front Cover
Ontario Review Press, 1993 - Fiction - 522 pages
69 Reviews
Joyce Carol Oates's prize-winning story Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been? takes up troubling subjects that continue to occupy her in her fiction: the romantic longings and limited options of adolescent women; the tensions between mothers and daughters; the sexual victimization of women; and the American obsession with violence. Inspired by a magazine story about a serial killer, its remarkable portrait of the dreamy teenager Connie has made it a feminist classic. Connie's life anticipates the emergence of American society from the social innocence of the fifties into the harsher contemporary realities of war, random violence, and crime. The story was the basis for the movie Smooth Talk, which became the subject of much feminist debate. This casebook includes an introduction by the editor, a chronology of Oates's life, and authoritative text of Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been? an essay by Oates on Smooth Talk, the original Life article about the serial killer, ten critical essays (including two about the film), and a bibliography. The contributors are Brenda O. Daly, Christina Marsden Gillis, Don Moser, Tom Quirk, B. Ruby Rich, R.J.R. Rockwood, Larry Rubin, Gretchen Schultz, Marie Mitchell Oleson Urbanski, Joyce M. Wegs, and Joan D. Winslow. Elaine Showalter is Avalon Foundation Professor of Humanities at Princeton University. She is the author and editor of many books on women's writing, including Sister's Choice: Tradition and Change in American Women's Writing. A volume in the Women Writers: Texts and Contexts Series.

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
4 stars
3 stars
2 stars
1 star

Fantastic story telling. - Goodreads
Oates is a great writer. - Goodreads
Her prose will consume you. - Goodreads

Review: Where are You Going, Where Have You Been?: Selected Early Stories

User Review  - Joyce Li - Goodreads

I think that this story portrays the ways of a teenager, a freshman in high school, accurately. Connie's avoidance with her family and the "need" to party with strangers at night, and leaning more on ... Read full review

Review: Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?

User Review  - Jamie Kenney - Goodreads

Most dreadful horror story ever Read full review


By the North Gate
Upon the Sweeping Flood 1966
The Wheel of Love 1970

6 other sections not shown

Common terms and phrases

About the author (1993)

Joyce Carol Oates was born in 1938 in Upstate, New York. She attended Syracuse University and graduated as Valedictorian. She then attended University of Wisconsin where she earned an M. A. By the time she was 47 years old, she had published at least that many separate books, including 16 full-length novels and more than a dozen collections of short stories. Some of her works were done under the pseudonym Rosamund Smith. She has also written numerous poems collected in several volumes, at least three plays, many critical essays, and articles and reviews on various subjects while fulfilling her obligations as a professor of English at the University of Windsor, where with her husband Raymond Smith she edited the Ontario Review, which the couple has continued since moving to Princeton in 1978. She has earned a reputation as indubitably one of our most prolific writers and very likely one of our best. Her fiction alone demonstrates considerable variety, ranging from direct naturalism to complex experiments in form. However, what chiefly makes her work her own is a quality of psychological realism, an uncanny ability to bring to the surface an underlying sense of foreboding or a threat of violence that seems to lurk just around the corner from the everyday domestic lives she depicts so realistically. Her first six novels, including Them (1969), which won the National Book Award, express these qualities in varying ways. she is also the recipient of an NEA grant, a Guggenheim fellowship, the PEN/Malamud Lifetime Achievement Award, and the F. Scott Fitzgerald Award for Lifetime Achievement in American Literature. Her title Give Me Your Heart made the New York Times Best seller list for 2011.

Bibliographic information