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The Catcher In The Rye Essay

2854 words - 11 pages

The Catcher in the Rye, written by respected author J.D. Salinger, remains a famous novel for teenagers of every background. Many events from Salinger’s early life appear in The Catcher in the Rye as he portrays himself as the main character. Holden Caulfield, the protagonist of the novel, struggles to figure out his place in the world and seems to be caught between childhood and adulthood, a teenager in today's world. Constantly misunderstood, Holden explains to the readers the many life-scenarios he is currently going through. As he is narrating the story from a psychiatric hospital, he begins to question his life and ever wonders if he will make it in this world. Whether he is figuring out his education or going on a sexual adventure, his current age coupled with his seemingly difficult situations allows for an easy relation to teenagers today. The Catcher in the Rye is taught in classrooms for exactly this reason. Holden and his struggles bring each reader back to a time in their own lives when they were going through a drastic change. Although many students in the middle school age believe that their problems are their own and no one else can possibly understand, the emotional realization that Holden is going through the same types of problems is the reason this novel has been so successful. It does not matter the current era, The Catcher in the Rye is and always will be a timeless success for the teenage population simply because Salinger allows the population to relate so well to the Holden Caulfield character.
Meet Holden Caulfied, the narrator and protagonist of The Catcher in the Rye. As the narrator of the story Holden focuses on his life changes and experiences starting off the book in what seems to be a mental hospital or sanatorium. As a sixteen-year-old boy he narrates his occurrences from the end of the fall school term and Christmas. For this being his sixteenth year, Pencey prep school is his fourth school that he has been to as all the other ones he has been kicked out. The Christmas break was just around the corner and since he was failing four out of five classes he was once again expelled from school. Holden left early and stayed in at the Edmont Hotel in Manhattan. Later in the book he meets up with his sister Phoebe, who Holden adores and takes care. Phoebe is one of the many characters who can tell that her brother is struggling and wants to do anything she can to help him out. Ever since they lost their brother, Allie, to leukemia, there is nothing more in the world than his baseball mitt, which Holden holds on to and cherishes. Holden also has a rough time getting over his brother’s death because since they were so close when Allie died Holden lost his capacity to truly love without fear. In New York he soon feels lonely and depressed and acts out in a strange ways. He has been wearing a red hunting cap every day, asking the cab driver what happens to the ducks in the central park lagoon during the winter and even...

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