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Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?: Selected Early Stories
     

Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?: Selected Early Stories

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by Joyce Carol Oates
 

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Joyce Carol Oates's selected early stories. Oates has chosen twenty-seven of her early stories, many of them O. Henry Award and/or Best American Short Story selections, for this volume, the only collection of her early stories available.

Overview

Joyce Carol Oates's selected early stories. Oates has chosen twenty-seven of her early stories, many of them O. Henry Award and/or Best American Short Story selections, for this volume, the only collection of her early stories available.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In her 17th collection of short fiction, Oates ( With Shuddering Fall ) retrieves stories from her first six, as well as two stories not previously published in book form. And while the volume includes some of her best-known work (``Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?''), the chance to savor ``The Molesters,'' never reprinted before though eventually included in her novel, Expensive People , and ``How I Contemplated the World from the Detroit House of Correction and Began My Life Over Again'' is momentous. For in stories such as these, the writer shows early signs of the sinister ingenuity and command of psychological nuance later fulfilled in other ways in other books. The new collection of work, dating from the 1960s and 1970s, reveals a consistency of theme. Oates demonstrates, for instance, that she was, as she is, cool-tempered yet seductive in her canny portrayals of innocence on the verge of defilement--and afterwards. The collection also displays the author's imaginative restlessness, and an apparent search for an anti-self in fiction concerned with molested children and suburban victims of sleaze and angst. Longtime fans will be pleased to be reminded of how Oates began, and first-time readers will find a good place to start. (Apr.)
Kerri Kilbane
Over a period of three decades, Joyce Carol Oates has penned, at her own estimation, more than 400 short stories. In this retrospective, the focus is on the writer's early ones, the best from "By the North Gate" (1963), "Upon the Sweeping Flood" (1966), "The Wheel of Love" (1970), "Marriages and Infidelities" (1972), "The Goddess and Other Women" (1974), and "Night-Side" (1977). Frequently anthologized stories--"The Fine White Mist of Winter," "First Views of the Enemy," and the title story, for example--appear alongside previously uncollected works--for instance, "Silkie," a decisive moment in a small-town girl's coming-of-age, and "The Molesters," a hard-hitting exploration of an abhorrent crime. The themes are vintage Oates: aggressive feminism, violence and the disintegration of values, and sexual tension. Such other noteworthy inclusions as "The Turn of the Screw" (a turn beyond Henry James), "Daisy" (a haunting variation on the theme of madness), and "Small Avalanches" exemplify the author's expansive literary prowess. Artistically balanced and soundly representative, this collection of the best from a vastly prolific writer will be valuable even where the basal collections exist.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780449307953
Publisher:
Random House Publishing Group
Publication date:
10/12/1979
Pages:
352

Meet the Author

Joyce Carol Oates is one of our most important and well known writers—and one of America’s foremost writers of the short story form. She is also a regular contributor of reviews and criticism for the New York Times Book Review, The New York Review of Books, and elsewhere. She also reads and lectures widely throughout the US, at universities and bookstores.

Brief Biography

Hometown:
Princeton, New Jersey
Date of Birth:
June 16, 1938
Place of Birth:
Lockport, New York
Education:
B.A., Syracuse University, 1960; M.A., University of Wisconsin, 1961

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Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?: Selected Early Stories 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I just recently read this story. I enjoyed it because in my opinion, you make up your own ending and you catogorize each character by what you think. I felt that the character Arnold Friend represented Satan. However, there are people who feel as though he may have been a saviour. I said Satan because of the emphasis that he could not fit his shoes properly(Satan was said to have cloven hoofs), and also how he knew everything about her from friends to family (also something a saviour might know). Where Mrs.Oates threw me off was with the numbers on the car. What did that mean? If in fact Arnold Friend was a messenger from God, could the number 33 stand for the age that Jesus died? If so, what do the numbers 17 and 19 stand for? Overall, I really enjoyed this story. The story has a close resemblence to song 'It's all over now baby blue,' by Bob Dylan.