Psychological Analysis Of Catcher In The Rye

superego takes control and changes his perspective drastically. He realizes that if he gives in to intimacy, he will rob the young girl of her innocence. Holden’s psyche has become so compromised with the complexities of Allie’s death that he cannot bare the idea of taking someone’s innocence. He swells up with guilt and refuses to have sexual intercourse with this young prostitute in order to preserve her innocence. From a Freudian perspective, Holden was deprived of his own innocence after allies’ death, therefore he does all he can to preserve others’ innocence. Holden lacks the presence of his ego; he seems to ignore the external world and does what he wants until finally his superego kicks in. Holden’s psyche is unstable.
Salinger projects
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One’s family environment or a trauma significantly affects the way one associates with others. For instance, Holden cannot seem to connect with people because Allie’s death caused a shift in focus in his family. His parents neglected him and left him at the time he needed guidance the most. He’s left to feel like he’s on his own and has convinced himself that “no one cares”. Therefore, he gives up on himself; he gives in to smoking, alcohol, and bad grades. He says to Mr. Spencer after he’s been kicked out of another private school, “Don’t worry about me…I’ll be alright. I’m just going through a phase right now. Everybody goes through phases and all, don’t they?” (Salinger 15). Holden feels he has to deal with everything on his own because that is how it’s always been for him whether it is with Allie’s death or in school. Freud would argue that the lack of love and support from his parents and Allie’s death has caused his inability to create or give in to any sense of attachment. It has led him to believe he is “alone’ and deny the need of companionship. Holden claims people never notice, he says, “Everybody says that, especially my father…people always think somethings all true. I don’t give a damn…sometimes I act older than I am…but people never notice it. People never notice anything” …show more content…
He desperately wants to stand out and be a part of the world, but he is afraid of change and afraid of “phonies”. Holden buys a red hunting hat soon after he loses all of the fencing equipment, “I put on this hat that I’d bought in New York that morning…” (Salinger 17). From the moment he bought this hat, Holden’s unconscious’ intent was for it to bring forth a form of protection. As Nevid states, “we remain unaware of our deepest wishes, ideas and urges” (Nevid 470). Holden grows to feel comforted by this hat, yet he fails to acknowledge the true significance of it: isolation. This red hunting hat comforts him when he feels depressed, like he did when he lost the fencing equipment. The hat begins to be a form of protection in which he is able to face the world without being fully exposed, and the hat eventually becomes a necessity to Holden. Without the hat, Holden is vulnerable; he is just an angry teenager in need to “fit in”. Freud would suggest that Holden’s red hunting hat symbolizes the conflict within Holden. Holden wants to face the world, but is incapable to cope on his

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