Theme Of Alienation In Catcher In The Rye

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According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, a vicious cycle is a repeating situation or condition in which one problem causes another problem that makes the first problem worse. Holden Caulfield, the main character of The Catcher in the Rye, by author J.D. Salinger, is stuck in a vicious cycle of self-destruction. Holden’s isolation and self-alienation creates a vicious cycle of hatred. This cycle is clearly displayed throughout the whole book and is accentuated through his interactions with strangers and those he is familiar with. One way this cycle is shown is through Holden’s interaction with the character Carl Luce. Carl was Holden’s Student Advisor when he was at Whooton. Holden feels lonely so he decides to go get drinks with Carl Luce.…show more content…
Spencer. He wanted to see Holden one last time before Holden moved out of Pencey for flunking 4 out his 5 classes. Throughout their entire conversation, Holden feels uncomfortable. This uneasy feeling is displayed in Holden’s thoughts, “All of the sudden then, I wanted to get the hell out of the room. I could feel a terrific lecture coming on … but I didn't feel like being lectured to and smell Vicks Nose Drops and look at old Spencer in his pajamas and bathrobe all at the same time. I really didn't.” (Salinger 12-13) Holden can’t seem to focus on the conversation at hand where Mr. Spencer is doing his best to help Holden and teach him some valuable life lessons. Holden and keeps remarking about Mr. Spencer’s “bumpy old chest” and how he is sick with the grippe. Holden hates the sight of decay and this kicks in his self-preservation and alienation response. He lies to get away from Mr. Spencer Certainly, Holden’s own cycle of flunking out of schools harms his ability to form relationships with others. This cycle contributes greatly the cycle of isolation and hatred Holden experiences all through The Catcher in the

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