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A Review of The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger Essay

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When The Catcher in the Rye was first published in 1951, it was ranked number one on the New York Times Best Seller list (Time Magazine). Yet it has been one of the most frequently banned books in schools and libraries. Written in the late 1940’s by J.D. Salinger, The Catcher in the Rye tells the story of Holden Caulfield, a teenage boy, who gets kicked out of boarding school and how he passes the days before returning home ,wandering New York City. Since its publication, it has been a book both adored and ostracized. However, whichever opinion one may have, one cannot deny the mark it made in history. The Catcher in the Rye is a novel that will be remembered throughout the ages for its depiction of post World War II life, both through the story and American society’s reaction to the tale.
The portrayal of post World War II American society was accurately portrayed through Holden Caulfield’s adventure during the course of The Catcher in the Rye. The book exemplified the daily American life and culture during mid twentieth century, which when read in the context of the present day, demonstrates how the American society has changed. In the time period Holden Caulfield lives in, the economy was very different from the present day’s. Holden buys a record at a record and states, “They charged me five bucks for it but I didn’t care,” (Salinger 116). This quote implies that five dollars for a record was very expensive. In contrast, in today’s society, one would be lucky to find a CD for as cheap as five dollars. Movies were also becoming an increasingly popular entertainment event in the post World War II era. Holden’s first idea for a date with a girl, is to take her take her to the theater or movies. He stated, “I went over and bou...


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...ok banned by schools and parents alike, but as a book that represents America and its culture in the mid twentieth century. After all, do people really want to prove Holden right when he says, “People never notice anything,” by not noticing that by depriving this book, people are disadvantaged of learning an important part of history ?



Works Cited

Aubrey, Timothy. "The Catcher in the Rye: The Voice of Alienation." History Now: The Historians Perspective 16 (2008): Web. 26 Feb2011..
Salinger, J.D. The Catcher in the Rye. Boston, MA: Little Brown and Company, 1951. 1-214. Print.
"Removing the N Word From Huck Finn: Top Ten Censored Books." Time Magazine 7Jan 2011: 3. Web. 26 Feb 2011. .





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