J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye

1435 Words6 Pages
This paper proposes to delineate the characteristics of Holden Caulfield, the adolescent protagonist hero of J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye and illuminate the reasons as to why this prototype of brooding adolescence, displaying a rather uber-cool style of disaffection, disenchantment and disillusionment became an indispensable figure of interest, in literary circles as well as popular culture. The paper seeks to take issue with the wider dimensions attached to the ‘incapacitation and debilitation’ Holden is often accused and address Salinger’s vision behind etching Caulfield precisely the way he is. The paper also wishes to foreground the socio-political implications that reverberate within the rubric of the novel, Holden’s characterization and his abhorrence at the ‘phoniness’ that surrounds him- an aspect of the novel that has oft been overlooked by critics, reviewers and commentators alike in their attempt to mete out an avalanche of critical inquiries into the overarching framework of timeless, transcendent morality, which manages to escape the roots of context that bred it. Also, an important aim of the paper is to collate critical attention on Caulfield into a cogent effort to place him in his rightful position as a remarkable hero of literary merit, akin to the oft-discussed analogies and comparisons of him with Huck Finn, David Copperfield, Stephen Dedalus, Leopold Bloom, Peter Pan, Natty Bumppo, Quentin Compson and the like. Towards the end of such a
Get Access