The Hitchhiking Game Themes

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Virgin/Whore Dichotomy

Central to the relationship between the young man and the young woman in "The Hitchhiking Game" is the historical way in which women have been categorized as either "virgins" or "whores." Through art, literature, and other elements of Western or European culture, women have often been judged based on their sexual behavior as either "virgins," and therefore "pure," or "whores," and therefore shameful, dirty, and sinful. In more colloquial terms, this "virgin/whore dichotomy" has been referred to as the "good girl"/"bad girl" split.

Both the young man and the young women view all women in terms of these categories. At the beginning of the story, they both see the young woman as falling into the category of "good girl." Although she is not technically a virgin, her shyness, embarrassment and general sexual repression place her in this category. For the young woman, this is...

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This section contains 684 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Hitchhiking Game Study Guide
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Short Stories for Students
The Hitchhiking Game from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.