Significance Of Rebellion In Catcher In The Rye

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The Catcher in the Rye is a novel written by J.D. Salinger in 1951. It is essentially an indictment and is written in a stream of consciousness in order to obtain empathy from the readers. It is the story of Holden Caulfield, a cynical teenager, who quickly becomes a symbol for rebellion due to his ability to reveal the flaws in our society. Although he is an everyman character, the emphasis of the novel is on the society we live in and the importance of understanding, loving, and educating adolescents in order to prevent their rebellion. The novel begins with Holden in a psychiatric home. Holden is somewhat of an outsider and has built a wall to protect him from the complexities of life. He constantly wears his red hunting hat, which symbolizes …show more content…
He despises conflict, is confused by Allie’s death, and fears social interactions. He desperately needs love, but is incapable of dealing with people. His date with Sally demonstrates this perfectly. Holden tells Sally, “C’mon, let’s get outa here.” (p. 133) He believes they should run away and live on their own in a cabin. His attempt to convince Sally to run away shows his immaturity and selfishness. With each interaction, Holden starts to lose faith. So, he decides to go see his sister Phoebe. She is quick to accuse him of hating everything and tells him, “Daddy’s going to kill you.” (p. 173) As he is about to leave his home, he tells her, “I want to be a catcher in the rye.” (p. 173) Holden wants to prevent children from losing their lives and becoming corrupted by society. This reflects his innocence and his belief in pure, uncorrupted youth. On the other hand, it represents his disconnection from society. Once he leaves his home, he thinks about calling Mr. Antolini, an old teacher of his. Mr. Antolini tells Holden, “This fall I think you’re riding for-it’s a special kind a fall, a horrible kind.” (p. 187) He is worried about him because this is a fall that will leave him frustrated against the world. Their conversation unsettles Holden and leaves him feeling depressed. Holden concludes his story by saying that he went home, got sick, and was sent to the rest home from which he now tells his …show more content…
He wanted to spark a change in our society. Holden is an everyman character and someone we all relate to. The Catcher in the Rye was frequently read as a story about an individual’s alienation within a heartless world. Personally, I believe the novel is an eye-opener. It is a reminder that we do not live in a perfect world. We are still growing as a society and it is important that we give people what they need. Holden stands for young people everywhere who feel pressured to grow up and live their lives according to the rules. I hope this novel’s message remains relevant and is not overlooked because The Catcher in the Rye will always remain a milestone in our

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