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Big Mouth Ugly Girl

Essay by   •  April 4, 2011  •  Essay  •  611 Words (3 Pages)  •  4,942 Views

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The most devastating events can be expanded, and edited to catch the attention of the world. The target of the story psychologically disappears from the face of the earth. As a result a new person of exact resemblance is replaced by the work of the media, and even the public. The way these targeted people live and the events they participate in are observed by the people of the world. Rumors spread like wild fire just as in "Missing Women" (June Spence) and "Big Mouth and Ugly Girl" (Joyce Carol Oates).

In "Big Mouth Ugly Girl" Matt Donaghy, the classic nerd of Rocky River High who has everything, is torn apart by a false accusation (Oates 4). The majority of the students are ones who create the rumors. However, it was Matt who gave them the ability. A devastating rumor started by a couple simple words. These students were the people who used to speak only of the good of Matt. Then the only news the students began to talk about were his terrorist activities. Matt's private joke, "Massacre a few people, Viva Columbine," is the basis of the rumors (Oates 43).

Many rumors demean the reputation of the women completely in "Missing Women" (June Spence). Drugs, pregnancy, and debt are the basis of the rumors created by the public. The women just suddenly disappear from the city without a trace. Nothing can be used as evidence to create a reason for their disappearance. It is a mystery in itself, and the media wanted to try to solve it with the beliefs and opinions of the other citizens.

The media's collected opinions may have been false. They had no proof if the citizen they were interviewing had a hatred for the women. If the people did hate the women they most likely would have been glad for their disappearance. In the story many of the citizens only talk of negative aspects of the women. One citizen relates to Kay as being a drug dealer because of her expensive taste. Another related to Vicki for being a party girl due to her increased attendance at high school parties.

However, the rumors did not match up with each other. If the rumors did match up the media would have a better chance to prove the information true due to a large majority of the citizens agreeing with the rumors. This would give the rumors more of a meaning and possibly the ability to be true. However, only three women know what happened, and they were the ones who disappeared.

Some of the false rumors concerning Matt ranged from a bomb threat (Oates 24), even to such an extreme as Matt holding the principal at gunpoint in his office (Oates 25). As a result, Matt's reputation of being a geek is transformed into being a terrorist. The city police reacted to the rumor as if it their hair was on fire. Matt's arrest happened without delay, and he was brought to the Rocky River Police Station for questioning.

Both of the stories have completely



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