To What Degree Does One Need to Know an Author's Background to Understand and Appreciate a Novel?

To What Degree Does One Need to Know an Author's Background to Understand and Appreciate a Novel?

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Searching for background information about a novel or its author before reading it, is a matter that is subject of discussion all around the world. While many people believe that the different literary works ‘’speak for themselves’’ and do not rely upon further investigation, the truth is that every story depends on background information to be fully comprehended and appreciated and. The very celebrated, criticized and prominent novel ‘’The Catcher in the Rye’’, by J.D Salinger is not the exception. The amount of significant and vital information that can be obtained by exploring Salinger’s life, results very helpful for the readers that might have problems understanding the characters, their actions, their thoughts, and the motives for the existence of the novel.
Authors frequently put themselves into their own work and characters. After reading about Salinger’s life, the readers can actually understand the complex character of Holden. At first, people might wonder why Holden behaves the way he does, or why he seems to like certain things that at first sight are peculiar or make no sense to us. The view totally changes after exploring Salinger’s life in detail. Salinger seems to use Holden as a device through which he expresses his different emotions, feelings, secrets, likes, disgusts, etc. Holden and Salinger have many different similarities. A perfect example is the fact that after gaining so much fame, Salinger separated himself from the world and society by having the least amount of communication with different Medias and not publishing stories anymore. This behaviour is directly related and similar to one of Holden, who often tries to isolate himself from the world. There we can perceive how Salinger put himself into Hol...


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...rovides with information that help us to understand and appreciate a novel better.




Works Cited

"The Catcher in the Rye-Context." SparkNotes. SparkNotes, n.d. Web. 18 Nov. 2013.

"J.D. Salinger." 2013. The Biography Channel website. Nov 18 2013, 04:34http://www.biography.com/people/jd-salinger-9470070.

Ms. Magnan. "Catcher in the Rye WebQuest - Ms. Magnan's English Classes." Catcher in the Rye WebQuest - Ms. Magnan's English Classes. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Nov. 2013. .

Andrew Romano. "15 Revelations from New J.D. Salinger Biography." The Daily Beast. Newsweek/Daily Beast, 02 Sept. 2013. Web. 18 Nov. 2013. .

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