Essay on Analysis Of Holden Caulfield in J.D. Salinger's Catcher in the Rye

Essay on Analysis Of Holden Caulfield in J.D. Salinger's Catcher in the Rye

Length: 1296 words (3.7 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

In Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger, Holden Caulfield is confronted with the difficulties of both humanity and life as he struggles to find direction, as well as a connection to a world which he has lost faith in. From the very beginning of the novel, the reader can appreciate and relate to Holden’s criticism and condemnation about society and the way people in society govern themselves. “Phoniness”, a reoccurring motif in the novel, is one of Holden’s most favorite conceptions, and is his catch phrase for describing the superficiality, hypocrisy, pretentiousness, and triviality that he comes across in the world around him. The painfulness of growing up is another issue that is touched quite frequently upon throughout the novel, as it is showcased through Holden’s creation of a fantasy world where childhood is a place of innocence and honesty while adulthood is only duplicity and deceit. Finally, relationships and intimacy are also sources of discomfort for Holden as he always runs away from the possibilities of affection and crawls back into the shell of isolation that he has created for himself. These three themes, although they may seem to only be typical, adolescent dilemmas, bring to light the injustices and inherent problems in societal standards and ideals. Ranging from the dishonest nature of people, the hardships of becoming an adult, to the difficulties of creating lasting relationships, Catcher in the Rye is not simply about an erratic and irresponsible teenager lashing out at the world, but a message that reveals pressing concerns of the existing, rigid s...

... middle of paper ...

...g intimacy instead. Holden’s issues with relationships, whether they are platonic or romantic, emotional or physical, show that although he would like to believe that he can carry on perfectly fine without human interaction, nobody, not even himself, can do so.
Though Holden Caulfield seems to be a belligerent teenager rebelling against the constraints of society because he feels trapped, he is also an honest social critic, pointing out the unfairness in society. From the phoniness that plagues the adult world, to the unexpected transition to adulthood that many children are unprepared for, to the hardships of creating lasting and meaningful relationships, Catcher in the Rye sends the message that society is hard to change, and although it is only natural to detest certain aspects of society, it is also necessary to come to peace with one’s place in the world.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Mental Analysis on Holden Caulfield in J.D. Salinger´s The Catcher in the Rye

- Today in the United States, according the Nation Institute of Mental Health, , almost one in four adults suffer from a diagnosable mental disorder in any given year, and one in seventeen adults are suffering from mental disorders that can be considered serious, such as major depressive disorder, bipolar disorders, pervasive developmental disorders, panic disorder, and post traumatic stress disorders (Health Care Service Corporation) (The Numbers Count: Mental Disorders in America). J.D. Salinger’s novel, The Catcher in the Rye, provides the narrative of a young adult, Holden Caulfield, who I believe shows many symptoms of several different mental disorders....   [tags: disorders, symptoms, stability, mental]

Strong Essays
810 words (2.3 pages)

Analysis Of Holden Caulfield 's ' The Catcher Rye ' Essay

- In J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye, Holden Caulfield returns to his hometown, where he goes on an adventure to answer the questions he has about life. After being kicked out of his third boarding school, Holden Caulfield spends three days alone in New York.While in New York, Holden constantly thinks about his old friend Jane Gallagher, who Holden’s old roommate just went on a date with the night Holden left Pencey Prep School. He also meets up with his little sister Phoebe and takes her to the zoo to ride on the carousel....   [tags: The Catcher in the Rye, J. D. Salinger]

Strong Essays
1945 words (5.6 pages)

J.D. Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye Essay

- Holden Caulfield is a strange character in the story The Catcher in the Rye. He is first seen this way by when he gets expelled from a school called Pencey Prep. He is expelled for flunking almost all of his classes. Holden then watches his school play in a football game from afar and decides he wants to say bye to his teacher. After that he decides to leave Pencey early and head home to New York. He goes out drinking and hitting on women while he is there and then goes to see his sister, Phoebe....   [tags: Holden Caulfield, character analysis]

Strong Essays
784 words (2.2 pages)

J.D. Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye Essay

- Holden Caulfield’s experiences, and the transformation he undergoes in reaching a point where he “misses everybody” (Salinger 277), resonates much with the author’s experiences illustrated in the poem “Necessity for Irony”. In the poem, Eaven Boland expresses the irony of looking for something and later realizing that the thing you were looking for was already there—and now it is gone. He states that this realization “brings pain” since one recognizes the fallacy of his/her actions too late. Boland, “with [his] back turned to [his daughter]” (line 46), searched for beautiful things, thus ignoring the truly beautiful thing which he would grow to realize he missed....   [tags: Holden Caulfield, character and story analysis]

Strong Essays
624 words (1.8 pages)

Essay about Analysis Of ' Salinger 's ' The Rye '

- 1. The Catcher in the Rye was written by J.D. Salinger and is a fictional coming of age story. 2. Holden Caulfield is a teenager who has been kicked out Pencey Prep School for failing almost all of his classes. Holden goes to visit the teacher of one of his classes at Pencey Prep where his teacher advises him on what to do with the next step of his life. Holden then returns to his room and talks with his roommate, Ward Stradlater, and another student, Robert Ackley. Stradlater leaves on a date and when he returns, he and Holden get into a fight....   [tags: The Catcher in the Rye, Holden Caulfield]

Strong Essays
1694 words (4.8 pages)

Analysis Of Holden Caulfield 's ' The Rye ' Essay

- In J.D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye, Holden Caulfield is seen by some critics a a drop out student destined for failure in life, but I see him as a symbol of an adolescent who struggles to adapt to the reality of adulthood. In Holden’s ordinary world, problems in many aspects of his life are filled with demoralizing dilemmas that portray him as a failure in life. One of the first piece of background information he provides to readers is about how unworthy his older brother is by saying “Now he’s out in Hollywood, D.B., being a prostitute” (Salinger, 4)....   [tags: The Catcher in the Rye, J. D. Salinger]

Strong Essays
1116 words (3.2 pages)

Character Analysis of Holden Caulfield of Catcher In The Rye Essay

- Character Analysis of Holden Caulfield Ever since its publication in 1951, J.D. Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye has served as a firestorm for controversy and debate. Salinger's portrayal of Holden, which includes incidents of depression, nervous breakdown, impulsive spending, sexual exploration, crudeness, and other erratic behavior, have all ascribed to the controversial nature of the novel. Holden embarks on a journey and through every turn in the road, he deals with conflicts within himself searching for the truth in a society full of falsity....   [tags: J.D. Salinger]

Free Essays
1006 words (2.9 pages)

Analysis Of The Book ' Catcher Of The Rye ' By Quot. Salinger Essay

- Catcher in the Rye analysis The Novel “Catcher in the Rye” by J.D. Salinger is often know for being the novel that led to the death of pop culture icon John Lennon, but it is also known as one of the greatest novels ever written. Although it does not move me to strike down a Beatle, it does move me to consider my own relationships and what we as a society value and promote among each other. At the beginning of the novel, Holden Caulfield’s pessimism prevents him from succeeding, or even attempting to fit in society, because he is too close minded to the world around him....   [tags: The Catcher in the Rye]

Strong Essays
1535 words (4.4 pages)

Analysis Of Salinger 's ' The Catcher 's The Rye ' Essay example

- At the age of 9, a little girl is counting down the days until her next birthday because double digits are a big deal. Now she is 12 and is still counting the days until she can call herself a teenager. For years people cannot wait to be another year older… until they actually become older. As people grow up they accept that maturing means taking on responsibilities and adulthood. Having sleepovers and play-dates, taking naps, and climbing the monkey bars becomes taboo. The simplistic life of a child quickly changes into the dull reality of school and work....   [tags: The Catcher in the Rye, Adolescence]

Strong Essays
1680 words (4.8 pages)

The Catcher in the Rye - Character Analysis of Holden Caufield Essay

- The Catcher in the Rye - Character Analysis of Holden Caufield In J.D. Salinger's novel The Catcher in the Rye, the main character, Holden Caufield, describes in detail the parts of his life and his environment that bother him the most. He faces these problems with a kind of naivety that prevents him from fully understanding why it is that he is so depressed. His life revolves around his problems, and he seems helpless in evading them. Among others, Holden finds himself facing the issues of acceptance of death, growing up, and his own self-destructiveness....   [tags: In J.D. Salinger The Catcher in the Rye]

Strong Essays
748 words (2.1 pages)