This essay is on the catcher in the rye and how holdens problems are similar to a teens problems.
The Catcher in the Rye
Everyone goes through a difficult time in their teenage years. Holden Caulfield is no different from a typical teenager. Holden, a 17-year old teen, goes through many situations and problems after leaving Pencey Prep and wandering New York City for 3 days in The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger. Holden faces the problems of not fitting in, everyone appearing to be against him, and growing up and losing the innocence from childhood. Holden does have the problems of a typical teenager.
Sometimes, for a teenager, it is difficult to fit in. They may end up alone and depressed. Holden had that problem. He did not really fit in at any of the schools. This probably had led Holden to leave school and wander New York City. He also got very depressed. “I guess it was because I was feeling so depressed and lonely (153).” Depression, on top of other psychological reasons caused Holden to check in to the home for psychiatric care.
For a teenager, it appears everyone is against him/her. Holden’s opinion on others is based on looks and how they act. He calls the people that he believes act in the way that is expected of them and act superficial. His sister Phoebe and his dead brother Allie are the only ones that Holden believes are not against him. This made him lonely which may have led to him wanting to suicide. These are just phases teens go through, because they are growing up, hormonal imbalances, etc.
Holden is losing his innocence of childhood and is learning about how the world really is. He is going through the middle of childhood and adulthood. He faces new challenges and more access to things he did not have before. He feels sorry for things people go through, such as Sunny. I thought of her…and nobody in the store knowing she was a prostitute (96)” He also doesn’t understand other concepts of being an adult. “Sex is something I really don’t understand too hot. You never know where … you are. I keep making up these sex rules for myself, and then I break them right away (63).”He might be trying to grow up and mature but still as a mentality of a child. “Well, you know the ducks that swim around it…Do you happen to know where they [ducks] go in the wintertime, by any chance (81)?” he does not want to give in to change and fights it.
In his three day adventure, Holden has unique circumstances, but with typical problems. He is not fitting in, appearing that everyone is against him, and he is losing his innocence. Even with all of his psychological problems and past situations, he wishes to help out others and to rescue them from the cruelty of the world. He wishes to be the Catcher in the Rye.