Catcher In The Rye Education

1433 Words6 Pages
The English curriculum of American high schools includes works such as To Kill a Mockingbird, Romeo and Juliet, The Great Gatsby, Lord of the Flies, and Macbeth. However, another book causes fierce debate about its inclusion in literary relevance. The Catcher in the Rye is one of the most controversial texts to grace the public education system with its heavy use of slang, mature scenarios, and bleak views of society. However, all of these subjects impact high schoolers much less than worried parents or teachers would expect while actually promoting practical, constructive themes, and for this, The Catcher in the Rye should be taught in high schools today. Although The Catcher in the Rye explores many suggestive topics, it has an overall…show more content…
Education does not exist to humor parents with useless academia and imagination, but rather to learn how to act when students reach adulthood and must react to real scenarios in a competent and informed manner. In fact, many students complain how the American education system fails to prepare them for real-life situations, while providing information that will never be used again by students. However horrifying to the book’s opponents, the book’s situations represent those which students will likely need to face and react appropriately to later in their lives. In this sense, no other high school curriculum book approaches the comprehensibility of The Catcher in the Rye. Readers can experience failure, independence, regret, and depression as well as more specific difficulties through the experiences of Holden. For example in a moment of impulse and curiosity, Holden abuses his independence and hires a prostitute for his hotel room. After an argument over price arises and the prostitute’s manager, Holden recounts, “Then he smacked me… All I felt was this terrific punch in my stomach” (115). Through tough situations such as this, high schoolers can learn fairly accurately how to act when thrust into a world of freedom and opportunity. Without actually partaking in similar decisions as Holden, readers vicariously live through Holden and experience the failure Holden receives when he makes a wrong, uninformed decision. Opposers of this book’s teaching in high schools may argue that other more tasteful books teach the same lessons as The Catcher in the Rye in a nicer manner. Other books simply do not provide accurate societal lessons as straightforward and frequent as The Catcher in the Rye. The messages of other books can often be lost in irrelevant details of plot and the avoidance of clear themes while Salinger’s lessons apply directly to the lives of readers who are in direct
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