Belonging In J. D. Salinger's The Catcher

1378 Words6 Pages
Journey of a Catcher
Social Interaction is a part of our everyday lives. Have you ever tasted the pain of social rejection? If so, you know the downside to social interactions. The period of adolescence is where one could most likely experience the sting of social rejection. Many would think the effect of this rejection could lead to many emotional problems but the result could be quite different . Rejection and the need for belonging is being neglected in our society. In J.D Salinger's novel “The Catcher In the Rye,” Holden Caulfield struggles with expressing himself in a manner that is accurate to his own personal and social codes. In a world full of “hot shots” Holden wants to maintain a life abiding to his view of the world.
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In Holden’s time, the fifties, it was a battle the adolescent had to face on his own. People thought that the long time effects and pain of social rejection is not that big of a deal. Social pain as a result of rejection defined by DeWall, Eisenberger is “Rejection that has serious serious implications for an individual’s psychological state. Social rejection can influence emotional and physical pain. 13 out of 15 school shooters were found to be suffering from social rejection (Weir,1) Social rejection is not to be taken lightly. We find that rejection can not only mess with the person getting rejected but also those around them.The school shooters most likely felt as if they had no place or belonging in the world. Their hate for those who rejected them drove them to bring out their anger and frustration on the world. Holden sometimes shows severe symptoms of pain and distress . He causes people around him to get hurt as a result of his pain, such as when Sally didn’t fully agree with Holden’s Ideas. Holden’s desperate need for being accepted leads him down a path of depression. “I slept in the garage the night he died I broke all the windows just for the hell of it...I hardly didn’t know why I was doing it, and you didn’t know Allie (Salinger,44).” This moment in Holden’s life was probably the most significant because of his strong connection with Holden. Holden Idealizes Allie as the…show more content…
Holden desperately searches for someone to talk to but he just can’t find the right person. Even with his attempts to initiate a conversation, he still finds himself stuck in the same situation, “C’mon, let’s get outa here,”I said, You give me a Royal pain in the ass… “C’mon, I’ll take ya home. No kidding.“I can go home by myself,thank you.If you think I’d let you take me home, you’re mad. No boy has ever said that to me in my entire life.” ( “Salinger" 148-149) Holden in his conversation with Sally”, “has given her reasoning of the world but his anger is aroused by her lack of understanding on his viewpoint. Holden went into his conversation with Sally seeking to fix his problems with living in society full of phonies. In the processes he was trying to get Sally to see the world through his eyes. Though the results of his words resulted in the social rejection of Sally. Holden desperately longs for a lasting relationship with someone, this is why he is contacting everyone in his “Humans have a fundamental need to belong. Just as we have needs for food and water, we also have needs for positive and lasting relationships” (Weir 1”) Holden always wants to fit in but he can’t because of his perspective on everything. He wishes to be realistic in a phony environment, Holden's. “Researchers say the rejected should seek out healthy, positive connections with
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