Theme Of Sexuality In Catcher In The Rye

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Unfortunately, there is a time in life, when the human species is forced to undergo a metamorphosis of maturity and responsibility that can change a person for the rest of time. The transition from childhood into adulthood, is a tough pill for some to swallow, and men like Holden Caulfield almost lose themselves in the process. Mr. Caulfield makes mistake after mistake, due to the fact that he is trying so hard to delay the inevitable. In The Catcher in the Rye, the only published novel by the mysterious J.D. Salinger is a coming of age tale in which Holden, a 16 year old teenager in the late 1940’s, embarks on a journey in New York City, after being expelled from his boarding school. Holden Caulfield’s biggest character flaw is his impulsiveness. …show more content…
It’s around this age that universally, especially in today’s society, that it’s a common occurrence to encounter situations that call sexuality into play. Holden Caulfield experience with these situations have been called into question his character at times. None more significant, than his encounter with the Sunny, the prostitute. At one point in the book, Holden returns from the hotel in which he was staying. He meets this elevator boy/pimp Maurice who offers the young man ‘company’ for the night. Holden understands that prostitution is wrong and states it forthright in the book, however his impulsive decision making and loneliness causes him to act out rashly and orders a prostitute. Not to mention the fact that he refuses to go through with the act, and pays the prostitute (Sunny) without ever having sex with her. Later on Maurice the Pimp and Sunny pay Holden a visit after a ‘mix-up’ about the amount paid which leaves Caulfield once again beat up, “He smacked me, I didn’t even try to get out of the way or duck or anything. All I felt was this terrific punch in my stomach,” (135). Here, Holden gives up, he knows that there’s no point in fighting and that he made a mistake. He knew that it was his fault that led him to this point, the choices that he made. In Peter Shaw’s Love and Death in The Catcher in the Rye, it mainly discuss and identify the key components that determine …show more content…
However not many of these people are a sixteen year old boy, especially in a time period where rules and regulations were very strict. Holden Caulfield, after meeting up with a man whom he was acquainted with, decides to completely lose it and get drunk after his conversation went differently than he imagined. At the end of it all, he finds himself wet in the freezing cold, in central park in the dead of night, “Boy, I was still shivering like a bastard, and the back of my hair, even though I still had my hunting hat on, was sort of full of little chunks of ice. That worried me. I thought probably I’d get pneumonia and die.” (200). Holden is worried about death in this moment, he encounters the possibility of death numerous times in the book, always because of decision making. This time, it was a conversation going badly, it takes an extreme amount of impulsiveness to get drunk over a conversation, and then almost die because of it. In Edwards, Duane’s paper, Holden Caulfield: Don 't Ever Tell Anybody Anything, the article is to prove that Holden Caulfield is the phoniness that he loathes, and is trying his hardest not to see the truth behind it, which stems from his own insecurities. “But he himself is a phony at times, and he has virtually no self-awareness. Furthermore, he has no intention of gaining self-awareness,” (Duane, 554). Due to his lack of

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