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Innocence In Holden In The Catcher In The Rye, By J.D. Salinger

1363 words - 5 pages

In the book of J.D Salinger The Catcher in the Rye The main character Holden Caulfield does not want to lose his innocence and doesn’t want to go into adulthood. Holden likes to see everything where there were and never change. For example
“The best thing, though, in that museum was that everything always stayed right where it was. Nobody'd move. You could go there a hundred thousand times, and the Eskimo would still be just finishing catching those two fish, the birds would still be on their way south...” (Salinger 121).
So Holden Caulfield doesn’t like when things change and he doesn't want to get rid of his innocence. Therefore Holden wants to be the catcher in the rye to save the innocence of the kids. “And I’m standing on the edge of some crazy cliff. What I have to do, I have to catch every one of they start to go over the cliff- I mean if they’re running and they don’t look where they’re going I have to come out from somewhere and catch them.”(173).This is when Holden talks about not wanting other people to change and lose their innocence because he is scared of change. Holden needs to grow up but Holden doesn’t want to because he doesn’t want to lose his innocence and he wants to save the innocence of other kids..
For example Jonathan Baumbach and his literary criticism show that Holden is unwilling to lose his innocence and the innocence of other children. “Apparently Holden wish is purely selfless. What he wants in effect is to be a saint-the protector and savior of innocence. But what he also wants, for he is still one of the running children himself, is that someone prevents his fall” (Baumback 266).This is a quote that shows that shows that he wants to help others but he also want someone to save him from falling and losing his innocence. Another quote that shows the innocence he has is: The most memorable love Holden has experienced had its fruition in daily
Checkers games with Jane Gallagher, an unhappy sensitive girl who was his
neighbor one summer. She has become the symbol to him of romantic love, that
is, innocence love. When Holden discovered that his “sexy” roommate Stradlater
had a date with her, he is concerned not only by the possible loss of Jane’s
innocence, but about the loss of his dream with her-the loss of their combined
checker-playing, love innocence”(271).
This is another quote that shows his innocence that he had with Jane Gallagher. That Holden was concerned about her innocence and worried about her dream because all the time Holden liked her as you can see from the criticism of Baumbach that Holden loved her but he still wanted to protected her innocence. An example from the book showing he wanted to preserve the innocence is
“Somebody’d written “Fuck You” on the wall. It drove me damn near crazy. I thought how Phoebe and all the other little kids would see it, and how they’d wonder what the hell it meant, and then finally some dirty kid would tell them-...

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