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In Joyce Carol Oates Where Are You Going Where Have You Been critics argue whether the character of Arnold Friend clearly the storys antagonist represents Satan in the story Indeed Arnold Friend is an allegorical devil figure for the main reason that he tempts Connie the protagonist into riding off with him in his car Oates characterizes Arnold Friend at first glance as a boy with shaggy black hair in a convertible jalopy painted gold581 She lets the reader know that Arnold is not a teenager when Connie begins to notice the features such as the painted eyelashes his shaggy hair which looked like a wig and his stuffed boots these features led her to believe he was not a teenager but in fact much older Oates does make Arnold out to be a psychopathic stalker but never objectively states the diabolical nature to his character In Connies Tambourine Man a critical essay on the story the authors write about Arnold Friend There are indeed diabolical shades to Arnold just as Blake and Shelley could see Miltons Satan a positive attractive symbol of the poet the religious embodiment of creative energy so we should also be sensitive to Arnolds multifaceted and creative natureTierce and Crafton 608 Mike Tierce and John Michael Crafton suggest that Arnold Friend is not a diabolical figure but instead a religious and cultural savior On a more realistic note Joyce M Wegs argues the symbolism of Arnold Friend as a Satan figure when she writes Arnold is far more a grotesque portrait of a psychopathic killer masquerading as a teenager he also has all the traditional sinister traits of that arch deceiver and source of grotesque terror the devil616 She also writes about how the author sets up the idea of a religious diabolical figure when she links popular music and its values as Connies perverted version of a religion Another hint
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