The Catcher In The Rye

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 12th grade January 2002

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What does it feel like to always be confused and second-guessing yourself? In Salinger's Catcher in the Rye there is somebody who does know. This very same cloud of uncertainty haunts Holden Caulfield. Not only was it frustrating but his uncertainty takes over his life. If it wasn't for the death of his brother, Allie, depression and uncertainty would not have been such a strong factor in Holden's life. Holden wishes to banish all evil throughout the novel, yet comes to the realization that he cannot. As a result, achieving success in any endeavor is very difficult. Holden's emotional well-being is at stake and he wants to escape his current world to assume a new identity in another.

However, near the end of the novel he finds one thing he is certain of: with all the evil in this world, Holden's goal is to preserve the innocence of all children especially his sister, Pheobe.

Thus, the author suggests living a life of uncertainty is difficult but finding something one is certain of can be the quickest cure.

People make choices everyday, whether it be sleeping, walking, left or right, we make simple choices each day. Not only is Holden uncertain about the little things, but the big things as well. Holden struggles with things like family, friends, and things like not knowing where he fits. Holden is a comic version, full of energy run amuck in the conformist 1950s; and he unpacks his heart in ways that can only give guardians of the official culture fits. (Randell 186) Putting on acts for other people shows that Holden is insecure with who he is and where he belongs. If Holden had a sense of belonging he could adapt his personality to a situation and not have to pretend to be...