Theme Of Friendship In Catcher In The Rye

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The lack of significant friendships in both books gives a second example of how relationships become diluted in the aftermath of death. Repeatedly throughout “Catcher in the Rye”, Holden claims to want a separation from other people and to spend time by himself, yet he constantly seeks out companionship. Though the reader only gets to know Holden over a few day span, he spends a large majority of the time pursuing any and all forms of camaraderie, despite his saying otherwise. He seeks out Ackley, Sally, Jane, Sunny, Carl and a whole cast of other characters. However, Holden describes essentially everyone he encounters as phony, which alters his ability to make significant friendships with any of the people he describes and/or encounters throughout …show more content…
Furthermore, though Holden is somewhat unconscious that Allie’s death has a substantial impact on his attitude and his actions, on some level, Holden knows that no one comprehends the grief he feels over the death of his brother, making it hard to relate with other people. Besides his interaction with Phoebe, Holden only discusses Allie with Stradlater at the beginning of the novel and is immediately shut down. Stradlater asks Holden to write something descriptive for his English class and Holden obliges, however, instead of writing about a room or house like Stradlater asks, Holden chooses to write about Allie’s old baseball mitt. When Stradlater reads the composition, he gets angry with Holden, causing Holden to become defensive. Holden writes, “I went over and pulled it right out of his goddamn hand. Then I tore it up” (41). Holden interprets Stradlater’s annoyance as an indifference to his deceased brother, causing him to believe that no one understands the grief he is going through. “Instead of his peers seeing it as a way to mourn his lost brother, Holden is ostracized for again rebelling against the rules and not writing what was assigned” (Privitera …show more content…
Almost every friend that Dave mentions doubles as a coworker at his startup magazine “Might.” By having no other immediate friendships than with those he works with, he shows an almost contempt for cultivating any consequential acquaintances. In his dramatized interview with MTV’s “The Real World”, Dave shares his judgment on humanity as whole, saying“ I know everything about people when at look at them for only a moment. I can tell from their clothes, their walks, their hair and hands. I know all the bad things that they’ve done. I know how they’ve failed and how they will fail and how miserable they are”(213). Dave suffers from a sense of preeminence that derives from the notion that no one around him can possibly conceive the pain and trauma that death left him. He thinks his experience with death makes him emotionally superior to those around him, rendering any acquaintance somewhat daft and ignorant in comparison. The one friendship that Dave discusses somewhat frequently is with his friend John, who attempts suicide approximately halfway through the memoir. Instead of sympathizing with John, Dave feels a sense of disdain for him and ultimately resents the position in which it puts Dave. He believes that John did not truly mean to kill himself, but rather wanted the sympathy that accompanies the attempt. To Dave, who has suffered through unjust deaths, the

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