The Importance Of Childhood In The Catcher In The Rye

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The journey from childhood to adulthood is a difficult process. In The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger, Holden Caulfield goes on a journey and he appears to be childish, immature, and idealistic throughout the novel. For example, it is very immature for Holden to scream out, “Sleep tight, ya morons!” (Salinger 59) when he leaves Pencey Prep. As Holden goes through his journey, he is exposed to the real adult world; however, he has trouble coping with the world and growing up in it. Holden is not successful with growing up and becoming an adult, but he is successful in discovering what it really means to be a child or an adult. He finds his breakthrough on these two concepts while watching Phoebe ride the carousel in Central Park. As Holden …show more content…
Holden intentionally makes rude remarks and jokes to innocent people because he is angry with himself. His absence of enthusiastic control is an excellent sign of a childish character. He is also defined as being immature throughout the novel. Some examples of his immaturity are, “What’re are you majoring in? Perverts?” and “Hey, I got a flit for you” (Salinger 159-60). Perhaps is judgment of the man he calls a flit is completely in view of empty qualities, which shows he has yet to comprehend that individuals are not generally what generalizations say they would be. Holden also has an immature position on sexual activities. He sees sexual action in an extremely shallow way, and maybe he neglects to perceive that wishful exercises are more profound than simply physical fascination. The first indication of Holden 's idealistic nature happens when Holden calls his brother, “a prostitute” (Salinger 4) for script-writing in Hollywood. Holden unmistakably feels that his brother is a disappointment for changing from writing books to composing motion pictures, which shows his idealism. His idealism is also shown when he uses the word phony to describe things and people. He uses the word phony to order things that are stick-in-the-mud or otherwise against his ideals. In the long run, Holden’s childishness, immaturity, and idealism are what his journey is focused on as he grows up …show more content…
He can figure out what it means to be a child or an adult, and afterward discovers his place between the two. He establishes his childlike innocence throughout the book, especially when talking to women. For example, when he is talking to a prostitute named Sunny, he asks “Don’t you feel like talking for a while?” (Salinger 106). Holden understands that it was an extremely silly thing to ask since Sunny is plainly not interested in just talking. His attempt to take part in honest casual conversation and delay in sexual activity reveals to us that he can be mature and respectful towards women. Holden is also grow-up in many aspects. He is very responsible when it comes to his sister, Phoebe Caulfield, because he tells her “you have to go back to school” (Salinger 228). Holden is concerned for Phoebe, and even takes responsibility for her when he realizes it is bad for her to run away from home. ”His refusal to allow Phoebe to accompany him, his anger with her for even wanting to go, provides us, and finally himself, with climatic insight into his real character” (Trowbridge 48). His concern for family is a responsible and grown-up trait that he has. After Holden goes through all these experiences, he finally realizes that he does not fit in either being a child or an adult, but between the two. He reveals the place he trusts he fits in when he explains “What I have

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