Jd Salinger Essay

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Salinger, J(erome) D(avid) (1919- ), American novelist and short story writer, known for his stories dealing with the intellectual and emotional struggles of adolescents who are alienated from the empty, materialistic world of their parents. Salinger's work is marked by a profound sense of craftsmanship, a keen ear for dialogue, and a deep awareness of the frustrations of life in America after World War II (1939-1945).

Jerome David Salinger was born and raised in New York City. He began writing fiction as a teenager. After graduating from the Valley Forge Military Academy in 1936, he began studies at several colleges in the New York City area, but he took no degree. He did, however, take a fiction writing class with Whit Burnett, an
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In the early 1960s, Salinger virtually stopped writing for publication and disappeared from public view into his rural New Hampshire home. In an interview that he granted during the 1970s, Salinger maintained that he continues to write daily, and has merely rejected publication as "a terrible invasion of his privacy." Salinger's reclusiveness added to his cult status.

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The Catcher in the Rye is narrated by Holden Caulfield, a 16-year-old boy who has just flunked out of his third private boarding school. Unwilling to remain at school until the end of the term, Holden runs away to New York City. He does not contact his parents, who live there, but instead drifts around the city for two days. The bulk of the novel is an account, at once hilariously funny and tragically moving, of Holden's adventures in Manhattan. These include disillusioning encounters with two nuns, a suave ex-schoolmate, a prostitute named Sunny, and a sympathetic former teacher who may be homosexual. Finally, drawn by his affection for his ten-year-old sister, Phoebe, Holden abandons his spree and returns home.

Salinger's depiction of Holden Caulfield is considered one of the most convincing portrayals of an adolescent in literature. Intelligent, sensitive, and imaginative, Holden desires acceptance into the adult world even though he is sickened and obsessed by what he regards as its "phonies," including his teachers, parents, and his older

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