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Childhood In Catcher In The Rye

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The most critical transition in a person’s life is during childhood to adulthood, and this period also become one of the most mentally taxing part of one’s life. It is through The Catcher in the Rye, that J. D. Salinger uses this coming-of-age story to tell his audience about Holden Caulfield and his very own transformation. Holden, however, initially desires to remain as a child and keep his innocence; this wish goes to the point that he wishes to become the catcher in the rye and “catch” children from falling off the cliff of adulthood. However, the truth behind Holden wanting to become the catcher is not to protect the people he love, but to save himself from adulthood, soothe his ever-aching guilt, and ultimately, to avoid his past. From…show more content…
Throughout the novel, Holden does not find closure in many things: Allie, Pencey Prep School, and even Jane Gallagher. Holden is seen to never see how any of his problem ended, and simply removed himself from the area and never looks back. Allie’s death is a major event that Holden does not get a closure to in the novel. Due to being hospitalized during Allie’s funeral, Holden never saw Allie go, causing him to unintentionally avoid the fact his little brother passed away. Soon after Holden recalls Allie’s death, he packs and heads out of the school during the middle of the night (52). Despite his official expulsion still being a couple of days away, Holden does not bother to wait for the final day and simply leaves. Eventually, Holden turns to Sally Hayes for another form of escape. Despite not having any emotional attachment to her, Holden becomes hysterical, coming with ideas about running away together and begin a new life somewhere else from New York (132). Meanwhile, Sally stays grounded by stating that “You can’t just do something like that,” showing how much Holden avoids any past he wishes to forget. By the end of the novel, Allie has formed into a symbol of Holden’s past, and in Holden’s mind, becoming the Catcher is the only way to continue his remembrance of Allie and unconsciously deny the fact that Allie was dead, and was never
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