The Catcher In The Rye

This essay has a total of 784 words and 4 pages.

The Catcher in The Rye








The Catcher in the Rye

In J.D. Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye, the first person
narration is critical in helping the reader to know and understand
the main character, Holden Caulfield. Holden, in his narration,
relates a flashback of a significant period of his life, three days
and nights on his own in New York City. Through his narration,
Holden discloses to the reader his innermost thoughts and feelings.
He thus provides the reader not only with information of what
occurred, but also how he felt about what happened.
Holden's thoughts and ideas reveal many of his character
traits. One late Saturday night, four days before the beginning of
school vacation, Holden is alone, bored and restless, wondering
what to do. He decides to leave Pencey, his school, at once and
travels to New York by train. He decides that, once in New York,
he will stay in a cheap motel until Wednesday, when he is to return
home. His plan shows the reader how very impetuous he is and how
he acts on a whim. He is unrealistic, thinking that he has a
foolproof plan, even though the extent of his plans are to "take a
room in a hotel.., and just take it easy till Wednesday."
Holden's excessive thoughts on death are not typical of most
adolescents. His near obsession with death might come from having
experienced two deaths in his early life. He constantly dwells on
Allie, his brother's, death. From Holden's thoughts, it is obvious
that he loves and misses Allie. In order to hold on to his brother
and to minimize the pain of his loss, Holden brings Allie's
baseball mitt along with him where ever he goes. The mitt has
additional meaning and significance for Holden because Allie had
written poetry, which Holden reads, on the baseball mitt. Holden's
preoccupation with death can be seen in his contemplation of a dead
classmate, James Castle. It tells the reader something about
Holden that he lends his turtleneck sweater to this classmate, with
whom he is not at all close.
Holden's feelings about people reveal more of his positi

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