Examples Of Grief In Catcher In The Rye

1778 Words8 Pages

Grief. Most people experience it at sometime in their life and it is shown in various ways. There are 5 stages of grief: denial, anger, depression, bargaining, and acceptance. Depending upon who you are and who you lost these stages can be expressed and handled in a variety of ways. We see a prime example of the five stages of grief in the novel Catcher in the Rye by J.D Salinger. In this novel the main character Holden Caulfield lost his younger brother, Allie, to cancer which we learn about in the beginning chapters. We continually hear Holden’s point of view of his brother and not only how he is handling his death but how it is still affecting Holden’s everyday life. Holden exhibits his grief in various ways as a way of attempting to reach …show more content…

To Holden, Allie was this amazing person who couldn’t do wrong. He was always kind, smart, and everyone wanted to be around him, so when Holden lost someone that had such a big impact on him, someone he loved so much and looked up to he started to say things like he “felt miserable. I felt so depressed, you can't imagine. What I did, I started talking, sort of out loud, to Allie. I do that sometimes when I get very depressed. I keep telling him to go home and get his bike and meet me in front of Bobby Fallon's house.” (Page 110) This not only shows Holden's depression but his continual denial of his brother's death. Another big piece of this scene is Bobby Fallon’s house when Holden and Allie were there when Allie was still alive and Holden told him that he was too young to hang out with them, but in reality Holden just didn’t want to hang out with him that day. Holden punishes himself about this moment throughout the chapter because of his overwhelming feelings of guilt for not spending enough time with his brother when he was still alive. As Holden is feeling this guilt he is walking into a hotel elevator where he meets a pimp who convinces him to hire a hooker. Later Holden answers the door and meets this girl Sunny who is about his age.He talks about his struggle to decide what to do with her but then eventually just decides to talk to her and pay her the money for that instead. Soon after Sunny leaves he hears a knock at the door which is the pimp who is mad about not getting all of the money Holden owes Sunny. He ends up taking the money and hitting Holden in the stomach which leads to Holden lying on the ground and staying “ on the floor a fairly long time, sort of the way I did with Stradlater. Only, this time I thought I was dying. I really did. I thought I was drowning or

Open Document