The Naivety of Holden Caulfield and America Exposed in The Catcher in the Rye

1406 Words Jul 11th, 2018 6 Pages
With every articulated drop of knowledge and accentuated measure of experience, comes a vast crescendo of soundness and wisdom. Acquiring these necessities of life may take a person, or a nation, decades of determination and desire for change to develop. If not given enough time, however, the individual or nation might descend and linger in a stage of naivety—where knowledge is too scarce to truly understand and evaluate all the experiences they have gone through in the world. Our nation is, and has always been, a nation succumbing to the weakness of our naivety due to the critical lack of the incandescent wisdom and maturity it needed in order for peace to prevail. In J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye, the young character named …show more content…
Salinger’s novel, The Catcher in the Rye, presented a young, naïve, and intelligent male teenager named Holden Caulfield whose independent lifestyle and philosophical anxieties mirrored that of our nation’s unworldly ways. First off, Holden was a mere 16-year-old at the time. His youthfulness was bounded by a reign of vulnerability and confusion, leaving him with a sense of being out of place in society. “When I finally got down off the radiator and went out to the hat-check room, I was crying and all. I don’t know why, but I was. I guess it was because I was feeling so damn depressed and lonesome” (Salinger 153). These subtle traces of teenage angst and disarray shown in Holden’s character provided precise evidence towards the fact that a person’s age was a critical contribution to his/her power to gather wisdom. Holden was also left confused and sickened by human behavior due to the death of his brother Allie. He was subconsciously comparing everyone in society to Allie, because Allie symbolized the last spark of innocence that he was exposed to. People around Holden were all eventually interpreted as ‘phonies’ as they each grew up and accepted reality. He reached the point to where he could not even sit through a movie or a play without caring about whether or not the actors would make any phony moves. “The trouble with me
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