Catcher In The Rye

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Catcher In The Rye

Catcher in the Rye Essay

"I keep picturing all these kids playing some game in this big field of rye and all. Thousands of little kids, and nobody's big but me. And I'm standing on the edge of some crazy cliff -What do I have to do, I have to catch them. I mean their running, and they don't look where their going, so I must come out of somewhere and catch them."(Salinger,173)
J.D. Salinger, in his timeless classic, The Catcher in the Rye, a novel depicting the complications of life as an adolescent, uses reality verses allusion, phoniness in society, and the loss of innocence as themes in his novel, to present the true inner character of Holden Caufield. Beginning to learn  the truths of society and growing up, sixteen year old, Holden has a hard time adjusting to maturity. After the death of his younger brother Allie, his inability to remain in one school, and his ongoing dislike of many people and their morals, Holden has been driven to depression in which he dispenses to a psycoanaylgist throughout the novel.
Through his novel, Salinger incorporated the theme reality verses allusion, to demonstrate how the mind of some adolescents are so unwilling to face the truths of society. As stated above, Holden wishes to accomplish an futile task, save children from growing up, and protect them from the corruption of adulthood. The following presents an example of Holden's inability to grasp the differences between reality and allusion.  "Somebody written 'Fuck You' on the wall. It drove me damn dear crazy. I thought how Phoebe and all the other kids would see it, and then how they'd wonder what the hell it mean, and finally some dirty kid would tell them- all cockeyed, so I rubbed it out."(Salinger,201) Presented here, an another example on how Holden once again attempts to accomplish the impossible, save children from the words and instances that they are going to transpire no matter how hard someone desires to hide it. Holden allows himself to live in a state of unrealistic thoughts, with the idea that change will forever be deleterious. Yet Holden seems frightened to admit to himself that change and development are a necessary part of reality. The only way one would be able to avoid change would be to die young, avoiding maturity, and maintaining innocence. Holden's dislike towards change attracts his interest to the museum, because a museum continues to be never changing, the displays are forever set in stone, and preserved. Lastly, Holden presents his fear of facing reality though avoiding the truth. After failing out of Pencey, he decided to hide out in New York City, until his parents reached notice of his being kicked out of yet another school, because of his fear to face problems. Yet in reality the only way Holden could fix the problems he had would be to face them, not avoid them. He simply ran away from any instance to improve his problems, or to speak the truth, therefore; accomplishing nothing but more fear. His inability to grasp the differences between reality and allusion, lead Holden into his state of mental depression, because he makes it possible for himself to expect only the best, everything perfect, and unchanged, which is truly preposterous.
"Since 1888 we have been molding boys into splendid, clear-thinking young men."(Salinger,2)  Throughout the novel, Catcher in the Rye, Holden expresses his distaste for the majority of society. Specifically, he claims most people act in a superficial manner, and observes the masses to be phony and unthoughtful in nature. Yet he himself acts phony, attempting to portray himself as someone else, someone better, and older, at points. Such an example would be when he speaks with Ernie Morrow's mother. In this instance, he characterizes himself as someone he hates. Another depiction of phoniness would be Stradlater, Holden's roommate at Pencey. Stradlater presents the perfect phony attitude that Holden has such distaste towards. His main worry seems to be that he must illustrate himself as the perfect jock; built, clean-cut, and gorgeous, and that bothered Holden to no end, because Stradlater never presented his true character, he constituted the word fake. Movie actors are

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