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The Catcher In The Rye Essay

1982 words - 8 pages

The book The Catcher in the Rye is placed around the 1950s narrated by a young man named ‘Holden Caulfield’ who himself is the protagonist. Holden is not specific about his setting, location, time and other physicality while narrating the story but he makes one thing clear: He is undergoing treatment in a mental hospital or infirmary. The events he narrates comprises of time in between the start of Christmas break and him leaving his school as he is expelled. Holden is sixteen years old. His story commences from Saturday following the end of classes at the Pencey prep school in Agerstown, Pennsylvania. Pencey is Holden’s fourth school; he has already failed out of three others. At Pencey, he has failed four out of five of his subjects and has received notice that he is being expelled, but he is not scheduled to return home to Manhattan until Wednesday. He visits his elderly history teacher, Spencer, to say goodbye, but when Spencer tries to reprimand him for his poor academic performance, Holden becomes annoyed. The story is all set in between that Saturday and Wednesday
Back in the dormitory where he is living, Holden is further annoyed by his unhygienic neighbor, Ackley, and by his own roommate, Stradlater. Stradlater is supposed to spend the evening on a date with Jane Gallagher, a girl whom Holden used to date and whom he still admires. throughout the course of the evening, Holden grows gradually more nervous about Stradlater’s taking Jane out, and when Stradlater returns, Holden questions him relentlessly about whether he take a crack at to have sex with her. Stradlater teases Holden, who flutters out of anger and attacks Stradlater. Stradlater pins Holden down and bloodies his nose. Holden decides that he’s had enough of Pencey and will go to Manhattan three days early, stay in the hotel not informing his parents about his early leave. On the train to New York, Holden meets the mother of one of his fellow Pencey students. Though he thinks this student is a complete “bastard,” he tells the woman all those made-up stories about how shy her son is and how well respected he is at school. Basically, he finds her attractive as she crosses her legs and lights a cigarette he, for a moment wants to forget that she is her school-mates’ mother. When he arrives at Penn Station, he goes into a phone booth and considers calling several people, but for various reasons he decides against it. He gets in a cab and out of certain unmentioned curiosity he asks him about where the ducks in Central Park go when the lagoon freezes, but his question annoys the driver. Holden has the cab driver take him to the Edmont Hotel, where he checks himself in.
Right from that Edmont Hotel’s room Holden can see into the rooms of some of the guests in the opposite wing. He watches a man putting on silk stockings, high heels, a bra, a corset, and an evening gown. He also sees a man and a woman in another room taking turns spewing out mouthful of their drinks into each...

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