The red hunting is seen as a symbol of protection towards Holden.’’I was sort of crying. I don’t know why. I put on my red hunting hat on and turned the peak around the back, the way I liked it, and then I yelled at the top my goddamn lungs,’’ is a quote from chapter seven and it shows how the hat protects him from the darkness and phonies of the real-life world. Holden feels as if the hat is a sort of armor and he becomes indomitable when he wears it. People today have a special item that makes them feel strong and invulnerable so that is how many people will feel a connection towards Holden.
Aside from being a liar, Holden is depressed. After Allie, his younger brother passed away, Holden hasn’t been too healthy himself. There is this baseball glove that was Allies, and it is a comfort to him. Along with that, another thing that Holden finds comfort in is a hat. This hate in particular is a red hunting hat. We realize that throughout the novel he is obsessed with the past and finds comfort in certain things. From the past, he finds comfort in Allie’s baseball glove, and a red hunting hat. To add onto these, as he gets older, he starts to smoke, drink, and go to his sister Phoebe to find comfort. Holden is only sixteen years of age, but he looks much older than that which is why he can slip through bars and drink, faking
Holden puts on his red hunting hat on when he is feeling vulnerable because the hat makes him feel as if he has security and confidence. The red hunting hat makes him feel as if he has the power and ability to be unique. He compulsively buys the red hunting hat after the fencing team verbally abuses him because he “lost all the goddam foils,” (Salinger 17).
Holden knows about how people feel about him but does not want to realise it and therefore uses a special technique to protect himself. His way is to call everyone a phony, he alienates himself. Holden feels like he need a way to shoot people but not with words while putting on his hat.”I shoot people in this hat.” His hat is a hunting hat. In a way it is pleasant for him, to shoot people because of the amount of people, especially at his former schools, that considers him to be an outsider is a worryingly large amount. Another way to protect himself is to say things like “ But I
Holden tries to prevent the inevitable, but one must move on with their life, and that is, contributed to the loss of innocence. His hat keeps him safe from the societal horrors that steal one's innocence. So when he has finally comes to grips with the fact that he must become older, and make grown up decisions, he gives his hat to Phoebe when, she takes it out of his pocket and offers it to him, since it was raining, but he says “You can wear it awhile” (Salinger 233), he does this because he wants to protect her now and stop running away from his
Salinger does a phenomenal job developing the red hunting hat into a symbol by emphasizing how important it was to Holden throughout the novel. When Holden is leaving the hotel, whilst walking out the door he grabs his coat from the hat check girl. He then proceeds to show her his hat. “I showed her my goddamn hunting hat and she liked it”(169). Salinger is demonstrating in this phrase the fact that Holden admires his
Salinger uses the symbol of Allie's mitt to express the theme of innocence as demonstrated in a major symbol, big factor in Catcher in The Rye, and overall connection to the theme of the book.
Holden prefers to stay as a kid rather than “grow up”. When Holden talks about phonies they were most of the time adults and never kids. He dislikes the idea of growing up and becoming a phony himself. He even says this when he talks about his cabin, “ I might come home when I was about thirty-five.”(pg.213) He decides that he might be able to accept to grow up by the time he is thirty-five. He doesn’t believe that he will be able to let go of the concept of innocence any sooner than that. Holden explains his thoughts at the end of the book, “ I mean how do you know what you’re going to do till you do it? The answer is, you don’t. I think I am, but how do I know? I swear it’s a stupid question.”(pg.213) He is pretty much confused on whether he should let go the feeling of innocence. His statement at the end tells us that he is tired of being questioned about his maturity, he admits that he doesn’t know when he will be able to
The Catcher in the Rye, Jerome D. Salinger’s one and only full novel, was written in 1951. Since then, it has sold more than 65 million copies and translated into most of the world’s major languages. This book tells the story of Holden Caulfield, a 16 year old who can’t seem to be able to stay at one school and despises the “phoniness” of adult-life. One day, he must grow up, but Salinger is there to lead him throughout the book. Salinger uses symbolism to convey a maturation theme in his work. Some of these symbols include Holden’s hat, the Museum of Natural History. and the carousel. All of these symbols contribute to the maturation of Holden and lead him to the path of accepting adulthood.
Holden rarely wears the hat if there is a chance he’ll be around someone he knows. “That hat I bought had earlaps in it, and I put them on--I didn't give a damn how I looked. Nobody was around anyway."(53) He doesn’t care how he looks because no one he knows is around that will judge him. The color of the hat is the same color as Allie’s and Phoebe’s hair. Being that they are the two people throughout the book Holden associates with innocence,wearing the hat may help him connect with them in a different way. Holden even gives Phoebe his hat hoping that it may protect her. “Then I took my hunting hat out of my coat pocket and gave it to her. She likes those kind of crazy hats. She didn't want to take it, but I made her. I'll bet she slept with it on. She really likes those kind of hats..." (180). Holden gives Phoebe his red hunting hat because he thinks the hat will protect her from the outside world and keep her innocence and purity intact as he believes it has done for him. Not only does Holden wear the hat all the time but he also talks about wearing the hat all time this showing that he’s a bit more self conscious about the hat than he lets
J.D. Salinger fully utilizes the literary device of symbolism in characterizing Holden Caulfield in the novel, Catcher in the Rye. Whether through a red hunting hat symbolizing a desire for individuality or ducks representing an escape from life’s challenges, Salinger conveys Holden’s struggles deftly, his traits elegantly, and his character development insightfully.
In every novel around the globe you can find carefully constructed paragraphs, written by the author to send a specific message to the readers. In The catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger, one particular section overflows with symbolism, metaphors, and hidden messages. By analyzing the passage’s diction, setting, and selection of detail it is possible discern the less overt statements hidden in the text and reveal the turbulent nature of the main character, Holden Caulfield.
What is a symbol? A symbol is an object or figure that represents a broader concept, like how the color red symbolizes anger or love. In the novel The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald writes about Jay Gatsby, a mysterious millionaire, from the limited perspective of Nick Carraway. As Fitzgerald unveils Gatsby’s secret past and story, he uses various examples of this illicit metaphor. From the green light to the weather, to the characters themselves, there is no doubt that symbolism is used to illustrate a more complex idea.
In this excerpt from the beginning of the novel called The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger, the main character, Holden Caulfield speaks to his psychologist about his deceased younger brother. Salinger includes this quote from Holden in order to offer the reader some understanding of his actions and attitude throughout the book, and it also enforces the thought that Holden is a character struggling with teen grief, misunderstood by his parents and the peers around him. In this quote, he seems to be lost in thought of the detail of his younger brother's baseball mitt, even remembering the "green ink" (Salinger) that was used on it. Because of this, readers can infer that Holden has spent much time with this mitt and that such an object has a great amount of sentimental value to him because it was a possession of a person that he cared greatly about. However, despite his pain, Holden does not allow himself to process his grief properly; he instead puts up a sort of facade of passiveness towards the death of younger brother. For example, Holden does this when he nonchalantly says, "He's dead now... You'd have liked him" (Salinger). This passage shows a side of
Motifs are recurring structures, contrasts, and literary devices that can help develop and inform the text 's major themes. One of the recurring themes in the novel The Catcher in the Rye is the omnipresent theme of death. It could be argued that the novel is not only full of references to death in the literal sense, physical disappearance, but also in the metaphorical, taking the form of spiritual disappearance, something which Holden often focuses on, along with the actual theme of mortality. It is possible that this occurs because of his reluctance to interact with the living world. As his means of escaping from the reality he despises, his mundane thoughts and the “phoniness” that he is surrounded by. Holden becomes increasingly attracted to the idea and comes close to obsession, as his mind is flooded with thoughts of death and disappearance, as well as questions which are revealed throughout the novel.