# Why does the copper anode dissolve?

In such a setup, the copper anode is known to dissolve. My question is, why? Does it not receive electrons from the $\ce{OH^-}$ ions. And if you say that those electrons just flow to the battery, let me provide the counterargument: the electrons flowing to the cathode do not prevent the copper cathode from dissolving because copper ions in solution accept the ions, so there is actually nothing stopping the cathode from dissolving as well. So, very simply, my question is this: Why does the copper anode dissolve?

In the vicinity of your anode, you have the following compounds: $\ce{H2O}$, $\ce{Cu}$, $\ce{Cu^2+}$, $\ce{SO4^2-}$. If you check oxidation states, you will realise that oxygen is always $\mathrm{-II}$, hydrogen is $\mathrm{+I}$, sulphur is $\mathrm{+VI}$ and copper is present in both $\mathrm{\pm 0}$ and $\mathrm{+II}$. Thus, the only species available for oxidation are copper($0$) and oxygen($\mathrm{-II}$).