Catcher In The Rye Analysis

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The following essay will argue and explain Holden’s view on authenticity, phoniness, truth, and his quest for answers to all his existential questions. Holden Caulfield in Catcher in the Rye is a wealthy adolescent who cynically rejects the superficiality of post-war America and no longer tolerates the empty values of his society, therefore in his personal view he regards superficial people as “phonies”, for they are neither truthful towards their selves nor authentic. In Holden’s quest of self-discovery his view on truth is recognised when he feels sorry for pretentious liars like Lillian Simmons and has a strong sense of fairness as he tries to correct injustice and unfairness. On this existential self-discovery quest, Holden finds himself questioning life and gains enduringly endearing qualities which establishes his views. The perception of authenticity can be described as the notion that people ask questions about the substance of directorial standards of society, and consequently they discard certain behavioural enigmas of the society which they belong to. (Khaladkar).Holden dislikes being an inauthentic and displays aggravation towards ignorance, immorality, superficiality and hypocrisy; subsequently he begins his existential quest for authenticity. Holden reacts against privileged predators such as Stradlater Ward in Chapter 6, where he describes Stradlater as “ Youre a dirty stupid sonuvabitch of a moron’’ which lead to the fight between him and Stradlater.

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