The “Age of Conformity”, the decade of the 1950s in the United States, was a time when “far out” ideas were punished and societal norms began to form, and teenagers living in this decade were far from exempt of conforming to these overbearing social norms. J.D. Salinger, author of the novel, The Catcher in the Rye, explored the difficulties teenagers faced in the post-World War II era in a captivating story told by a teenage boy named Holden Caulfield. For over 60 years, Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye has been a controversial work that receives criticism from some and praise from others, but leaves no doubt that the story of Holden Caulfield has intrigued readers regardless of their overall opinion of the novel. Salinger poured his own anxiety and PTSD from the war onto the pages, and by doing this, created Holden Caulfield. Holden, unarguably a deeply-troubled teenager, is one of the most relatable characters in literature read by high schooler students today regardless of their mental health state.
The Catcher in the Rye is a novel that was written by J. D. Salinger in 1951. It was first published by Little, Brown and Company and was originally written for adults, but became popular among teenagers for its teenage main character, who deals with problems a large number of adolescents face in their transition into adulthood. It is not a difficult book to read, especially considering it is only 234 pages.
“Then I lit another cigarette… I must’ve smoked about three cartons that day” (161). Catcher in the rye book by J.D Salinger is about a teenager named Holden Caulfield and is based on Holden failing college (Pencey) and having a rough time living around New York City until his parents find out that he failed at his fourth college. This book is written from the perspective of J.D Salinger and counters many issues regarding adolescence such as freedom and responsibility that Holden can’t handle leading to nervousness and depression. This is shown through topics such as drug usage, smoking, drinking, prostitution and J.D Salinger’s meaning to Catcher in the rye though it contradicts with the idea that he is nice towards Phoebe (Holden’s younger
In the Catcher in the Rye, Salinger depicts the immature mentality of typical teenagers through Holden’s childish curiosity. Teens experience
The purpose of my essay is to explore how different social backgrounds and the social norms that follow affect the personality of two fictive characters and encourage them to break out of their station to find an identity. The protagonists Holden Caulfield in J.D. Salinger’s novel The Catcher in the Rye and Tambudzai in Tsitsi Dangarembga’s novel Nervous Conditions are both victims of social norms. Therefore, the foundation of this essay was to analyze the character’s social background, which has influenced their personalities, behavior and aspirations, and consequently their opposing actions against society.
J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye is considered a coming of age novel. Throughout the novel, Holden, a confused teenage boy, matures and understands more about himself. Salinger conveys Holden’s increasing levels of maturity by using a variety of symbols. The ducks in central park, the red hunting hat, and the carousel ring symbolize the the development of Holden’s adulthood.
From the outset, I have to say that “The Catcher in the Rye” by J.D. Salinger has been one of the most important and influential pieces of literature I have ever read. At its core, the book is a superb coming of age novel which discusses several extremely powerful themes such as the difficulties of growing up, teenage angst and alienation and the superficiality, hypocrisy and pretension of the adult world. These themes resonated deeply with me and were portrayed excellently through the use of powerful symbolism and the creation of highly relatable and likable characters. One such character is Holden Caulfield whom the story both revolves around and is narrated by.
In this novel, Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger, Holden Caulfield is the narrator that goes through a variety of problems. He has dilemmas, but meets/reconnects with people on his quest of life. This novel is more than just a simple story about a protagonist and his life events. This novel follows the structure of bildungsroman. There are four parts to it- character’s growth in social structure, a form of loss, process of maturity, and if the character ends in a new place of society.
In the 1950’s the American economy was booming due to the conclusion of World War II. Economic prosperity transformed family life and people put more emphasis on the individual. Television programs represented how people should live the ideal life. With many changes in culture people began to have a different perspective on life. In the 1998 film, “Pleasantville” directed by Gary Ross and the novel, “The Catcher in the Rye” written by J.D. Salinger both depict teenage culture of the 1950s. These works decribe stories of rebellious tennagers and reveal that in order for a person to identify their true-self, he/she must go through a series of rebellious acts.
In his essay, “ Love and Death in The Catcher in the Rye” (1991), Peter Shaw claimed that Holden behavior and way of thinking is due to common abnormal behavior in a certain time for teenagers (par. 10). Shaw supported his assertion of the young Holden by comparing the literary culture of the 1950s and how Holden’s fictional character fits within the contemporary Americans novels as a, “ sensitive, psychological cripples but superior character” (par. 3). Shaw’s purpose was to show that Holden’s sensitive and psychological behavior is not abnormal, but such like stated by Mrs. Trilling that,” madness is a normal, even a better then normal way of life” (par 4). Peter Shaw’s tone assumed a highly educated audience who is
Holden Caulfield, the main protagonist in The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger, embodies the classic teenager in the process of discovering himself, and how the world works. But, regardless of Holden 's rich, prep school lifestyle, the series of events that have mapped out his life up to this point have utterly affected his emotional well being and perception of the world. Many traumatic events such as the death of holds brother Allie, the death of a class mate, and countless numbers of awkward incidents with adults have all added up to affects Holden 's well-being and detach him from reality.
Patrick Rothfuss once claimed, “The day we fret about the future is the day we leave our childhood behind.” The novel Catcher in the Rye focuses on Holden Caulfield, an angst-ridden teen conflicted between remaining in a state of prolonged innocence or transitioning into the world of adulthood, thus facing the corruption and phoniness that it correlates with. Through Holden’s dynamic character, J.D Salinger depicts how innocence is slowly lost when exposed to adulthood.
Holden Caulfield lives his life as an outsider to his society, because of this any we (as a reader) find normal is a phony to him. Basically, every breathing thing in The Catcher in the Rye is a phony expect a select few, like Jane Gallagher. What is a phony to Holden and why is he obsessed with them? A phony is anyone who Holden feels is that living their authentic life, like D.B. (his older brother). Or simply anyone who fits into society norms, for example, Sally Hayes. Holden’s obsession stems from his fear that he may become a phony one day. So, he spends the book running from adulthood by doing childish things and struggling to keep his life from changing.
Usually considered a controversial novel The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger can often express the feelings of being an outcast and the desire to find a meaning in the world. Holden Caulfield, the protagonist of the novel, though often complains of the phoniness of the world around him, has a way of creating a deeper meaning within the readers. While the truth may be that Salinger purposely set the story in such a way that the readers will be able to connect with Holden, not often do readers find it easy to do so. While Holden believes that everything around him are wicked and phony, there is part of him trying to protect the innocence of those not corrupted by such phoniness. Although Holden wants to protect and save the innocence of children, can he really do so if cannot protect himself and trust those around him. Though Holden believes the world around him is phony and wicked, and while he wants to be the catcher in the rye, catching those who will fall over cliff; Holden does not only want to save those children but he also wants to save himself.
In the novel Catcher in the Rye by J.D Salinger readers are introduced to a young man named Holden Caulfield who introduces himself and begins to tell his story of how and why he left his school; Pencey Prep. In the story, Holden explains how he is being kicked out of school and doesn't want his parents to know and so leaves school early. throughout the story, Holden explains what happens to him before he must go home and act like he is home from school for a break instead of being kicked out. When it comes to the topic of Author's purpose of The will of individual vs the will of the majority some will think the purpose is to show that Holden going against the will of society to rebel, however, I think the author’s purpose of The Catcher in the Rye was to show that the individual will manifest in his desire for isolation comes from his is fear and damage done by fear of pain, failure, rejection, and is unwilling or unable to go along with the majority. This all shown through Imagery, symbolism, and diction.