Franny and Zooey

Essay by Skye RobinsCollege, UndergraduateA, December 1996

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a detailed characterazation

'We're freaks,the two of us, Franny and I... and both of those bastards

are responsible...I could murder both without batting an eyelash...

The great teachers, the great emancipators.'

Childhood memories are ripples of waves crashing serenly throughout my

mind. Memories of climbing trees, playing dress-up and other fun-filled

reminiscences float through these waters like drift wood. I remember

nothing but living in a joyful bliss. My only tragdy was when Barbie's

beloved Ken's head fell off.

We are all increadibly innocent as children. We will reach out to anyone's

hand with out eyes fille with trust. The events of our childhood determines

who we are, what we will be, what our future hold. For example, I have

recently learned that, in many cases, an abused child will result in a

loathsome and abusive adult. The process continues geeneration after

generation. This is devestating because his or her child has absolutely

no power in controlling the early events of their childhood.

An abused

child is not at fault of the results of their childhood. A child is easily

susceptible to having the rest of his or her life ruined, such as being

emotionally scarred.

I believe this happened in Franny and Zooey's case as children. They came

from a relatively large family, consisting of two parents and seven siblings.

The Glass children had a radio talk show called the 'Wise Child' when they

were younger. Such pressures put upon the children resulted in which Zooey

calls 'The Wise Child complexes'. He believes that they never really

left the air. He believes that instead of carrying a normal conversation,

he expound on everything and ;therefore, is not able to keep his mouth


The two eldest siblings of the Glass children, Seymour and Buddy, have

influenced both Franny and Zooey, who are the two youngest in the family.

Zooey believes that it is them who have made him and Franny what they

are now, 'freaks'. Because Zooey believes they are responsible, he

developed a hatred for his brothers. I believe this hatred evolved from

fustration. This fustration could possibly be caused from the seperation

he must feel towards Seymour and Buddy. Seymour commited suicide, leaving

young Zooey with unanswered questions. Buddy appears to be cutting himself

off from his family,or even reality. He lives as a hermit, he is locked

away in a cabin with neither heating, electricity, nor a phone. Seymour

and Buddy have both put themselves in the same situation toward Franny and

Zooey. It seems that Buddy does everything that Seynour did, or tries to.

Zooey wonders why Buddy just does not kill himself and 'get it over with'.

The problem is lack of communication.

Franny seems to be looking for something, in terms of the complexities

of her life. Perhaps it could be an answer to a meaningful question.

She turns to two of Seymour's old books, entitled The Way of a Pilgram

and The Pilgram continues on His Way. She carries these bood with her

everywhere she goes. These books are about a peasant man in search of

understanding, how to pray wihout ceasing, so he can reach some sort

of religious enlightenment. This man somehow relates to Franny,as the

man is searching for bliss and Franny for some sort of meaning.

Franny and Zooey are victims. They are robbed of the right to feel

security, happiness, and 'normality'. They understand what they have

become, but do not understand what shall happen next. They will never

have the feeling of security. This novel relates to our society because

this type of situation happens everywhere today. It has always been around.

If it was not, then I believe that this world would be so much brighter and

happier. We should learn to understand this problem, help others in distress,

and stop it from occuring.