Table of Contents Holden Caulfield The number of readers who have been able to identify with Holden and make him their hero is truly staggering. Something about his discontent, and his vivid way of expressing it, makes him resonate powerfully with readers who come from backgrounds completely different from his. It is tempting to inhabit his point of view and revel in his cantankerousness rather than try to deduce what is wrong with him. The obvious signs that Holden is a troubled and unreliable narrator are manifold:
His narrative is disjointed, unreliable, and involves lengthy digressions that seemingly jump from one topic to the next with very few rational links.
It is, however, important to remember that J. Salinger is an excellent author and that he has created the narrative in this way to emphasise the workings or lack thereof of Holden's mind.
What is truly astonishing is that on a closer look at the structure of The Catcher in the Rye we can see that Salinger has, despite the outward appearance, structured the novel in an extremely logical and rational manner.
By examining this, you might be able to, more coherently, pull together a novel that often seems overwhelmingly complex and erratic. The point of any author is to express particular things about the main character.
In most novels authors use other characters to highlight and emphasise characteristics of the main character. The Catcher in the Rye is no different, except for the fact that the other characters are more important than usual because the narrator is so unreliable.
Holden tells us himself that he is 'The most terrific liar you ever saw in your life' p14he narrates from a mental institution and his commentary is erratic and overly cynical.
For this reason the minor characters in The Catcher in the Rye, are a very important reference point through which the reader can better understand Holden. General The novel progresses from Holden's school life, through the harsh realities of adulthood all the way through to home life.
Ackley and Stradlater represent Holden's school life, Sally Hayes and Carl Luce his life out of school, and Phoebe his relationship with innocence and purity as well as to his family.
Mr Spencer and Mr Antolini are the adult figures who directly analyse Holden's character. These two have been grouped together because of these facts. Notice that Mr Spencer is the first character that Holden introduces apart from himself, of course and Mr Antolini is the last.
Prologue and epilogue The epilogue and prologue are important as they set the context for the body of the novel. Always remember as you are studying The Catcher in the Rye that the novel is told from the perspective of Holden in the past tense.
Always think to yourself, what is the effect of Holden writing this story from a mental institution, where he is still on the road to recovery and how does his current situation affect the reliability of his narrative? Mr Spencer cares deeply about the direction that Holden's life is taking and is very worried about Holden himself.
The reader is introduced to Mr Spencer because he has left Holden a note asking him to come and see him before he leaves. There are a number of things to notice in amongst Holden's cynicism. Firstly, Holden respects Mr Spencer enough to honour the note and to meet him before he leaves.
Secondly, Holden knows very well where his teacher lives. Thirdly, Holden and the Spencers have a cordial relationship. As he and Mrs Spencer converse on page 5, he knows where Mr Spencer's room is and Holden is also aware of their personal life, 'they each had their own room' p6 and he knows what they like, 'they can get a big bang out of buying a blanket.
They obviously have a close relationship and Mr Spencer respects and likes Holden enough to try to help him. A good way to look at it might be to question Holden's assumptions about Mr Spencer's motives.
Holden the narrator states that 'you could tell that he felt pretty lousy about flunking me' p11 however the astute reader can see that Mr Spencer is concerned with issues broader than failing the course. As such, Mr Spencer demonstrates Holden's lack of understanding and connection with those close to him.
Ackley and Stradlater Ackley and Stradlater are two opposing characters in Holden's school. Ackley is unpopular, offensive in his personal hygiene and of an unpleasant disposition. Stradlater is popular, confident and athletic. The fact that these two characters are the ones Salinger has chosen for Holden to illustrate in depth is interesting.
They can be seen as serving to highlight opposing sides of Holden's character. Ackley and Holden share many things in common. Ackley can be seen to be the reality.
Stradlater's confidence with women is touched upon throughout the novel by Holden.Bullock Report 'A language for life' () Foreword, Committee of Enquiry Membership, Contents, Introduction. 🔥Citing and more!
Add citations directly into your paper, Check for unintentional plagiarism and check for writing mistakes. The Catcher in the Rye is a story by J.
D. Salinger, partially published in serial form in and as a novel in A classic novel originally published for adults, it has since become popular with adolescent readers for its themes of teenage angst and alienation.
It has been translated into almost all of the world's major languages. Around 1 million copies are sold each year, with total.
A vintage photo of JD Salinger with Emily Maxwell, the wife of his New Yorker editor William Maxwell, is featured in a new documentary and book.
An unseen story told from the perspective of JD. BibMe Free Bibliography & Citation Maker - MLA, APA, Chicago, Harvard. The Catcher in the Rye; Holden Caulfield; The Catcher in the Rye by: J.
D. Salinger but he is very interested in sex, and, in fact, he spends much of the novel trying to lose his virginity. He feels strongly that sex should happen between people who care deeply about and respect one another, and he is upset by the realization that sex can.