Catcher In The Rye Analysis

1434 Words6 Pages
American literature is full of classic novels containing heroic protagonists; Holden Caulfield of The Catcher in the Rye is not one of these classic heroes. The article Some Crazy Cliff by Arthur Heiserman and James E. Miller Jr. provides one interpretation of the novel suggesting that the protagonist is unique compared to others commonly found in American literature; most heroes are seeking acceptance while Holden is seeking something within the society he is trying to leave. The novel follows Holden Caulfield, a young boy who recently flunked out of high school, over the course of three days. During this time, the protagonist returns to New York via train, but does not want to be with his parents until they have already learned of his…show more content…
However, “for Holden, there is no place to go” (Heiserman and Miller 4). Holden was a lost soul. He created this idea in his head which would lead him nowhere. The ability to impressively lie allowed him to continually alter his inner truth to suit those around him. The “phoniness” of adulthood created a sense of detachment with Holden’s community. It could have been the loss of support as a child or even the need to mature at a young age that hindered his sense of purpose and hope. Ultimately, Heiserman and Miller attempt to uphold the position that J.D. Salinger purposefully maintains a common theme of childism throughout the novel, which lends insight into The Catcher in the Rye by helping the readers see Holden Caulfield in a new light. The similarities and differences Holden and other American heroes might not have been originally seen without this new perspective. Arthur Heiserman and James E. Miller Jr. are successful in presenting their argument. The idea that Holden Caulfield is attempting to save his lost childhood by preserving that of others reveals that his trauma of losing his younger brother to leukemia at a young age forced him to mature much sooner than normal, causing a protective instinct between Holden and the children in his life. For instance, Holden feels that he needs to preserve the innocence of any young children who are unaware of their growing

More about Catcher In The Rye Analysis

Open Document