"Where are You Going, where Have You Been?"

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Rutgers University Press, 1994 - Fiction - 165 pages
2 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, an 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 Schulz, Marie Mitchell Oleson Urbanski, Joyce M. Wegs, Marilyn C. Wesley, and Joan D. Winslow.

 

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User Review  - RussellBittner - LibraryThing

If Henry James is the master of psychological realism, Joyce Carol Oates is its mistress. And I, for one, find Professor Oates’s prose far less tedious and eminently more readable. In metaphysics ... Read full review

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I was Alleen's boyfriend at the time of her rape and murder. If this story was based on those tragic events, as many have been, from whom was the information gleaned? I see a lot of intellectual hype here, but a sad lack of fact.

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About the author (1994)

Joyce Carol Oates was born on June 16, 1938 in Lockport, New York. She received a bachelor's degree in English from Syracuse University and a master's degree in English from the University of Wisconsin. She is the author of numerous novels and collections of short stories. Her works include We Were the Mulvaneys, Blonde, Bellefleur, You Must Remember This, Because It Is Bitter, Because It Is My Heart, Solstice, Marya : A Life, and Give Me Your Heart. She has received numerous awards including the National Book Award for Them, the PEN/Malamud Award for Excellence in Short Fiction, and the F. Scott Fitzgerald Award for Lifetime Achievement in American Literature. She was a finalist for the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction with her title Lovely, Dark, Deep. She also wrote a series of suspense novels under the pseudonym Rosamond Smith. In 2015, her novel The Accursed became listed as a bestseller on the iBooks chart. She worked as a professor of English at the University of Windsor, before becoming the Roger S. Berlind Distinguished Professor of Humanities at Princeton University. She and her late husband Raymond J. Smith operated a small press and published a literary magazine, The Ontario Review.

In 1977, Showalter published A Literature of Their Own: British Women Novelists from Bronte to Lessing. It was one of the most influential works in feminist criticism, as it sought to establish a distinctive tradition for women writers. In later essays, Showalter helped to develop a clearly articulated feminist theory with two major branches: the special study of works by women and the study of all literature from a feminist perspective. In all of her recent writing, Showalter has sought to illuminate a "cultural model of female writing," distinguishable from male models and theories. Her role as editor bringing together key contemporary feminist criticism has been extremely influential on modern literary study.

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