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Catcher in the Rye Boys Will Be Boys

Uploaded by Quest4Glory on Jul 05, 2004

Holden Caulfield, portrayed in the J.D. Salinger novel Catcher in the Rye as an adolescent struggling to find his own identity, possesses many characteristics that easily link him to the typical teenager living today. The fact that they book was written more than forty years ago clearly exemplifies the saying "boys will be boys…" no matter what period of time is taking place. Holden's actions are those that any teenage can clearly relate with. The desire for independence, the sexually related encounters, the questioning of one's religion, the individual view of the world as a whole, the language, and dealing with teenage pressures such as drinking and smoking are issues that almost all teens have had or will have to deal with in their adolescent years. Thusly, this novel and its main character's experiences can easily be related to and will forever link Holden with every member of society, because everyone was or will be a teen. The first and most obvious characteristic found in most teens, including Holden, would be the desire for independence. Throughout the novel, Holden is not once wishing to have his parents help in any way. He has practically lived his entire life in dorms at prestigious schools, and has learned quite well how to be on his own. "This tendency of teenagers took place even in ancient history, where the freshly developed teen opts to leave the cave and hunt for his own food" (Kegel 54). Every teenager tries, in his or her own way, to be independent. Instead of admitting to one's parents of a wrongful deed, the teen tries covering up the mistake or avoiding it in hopes that they won't get in any Bailey 2 trouble. They feel that they have enough intelligence to think through a problem without going to their parents for assistance. When Holden hears the news that he has been expelled from Pency, he concludes that his parents would not know of this for a few days. Therefore, he would wait from Saturday until Wednesday, to let his parents "get it and thoroughly digest it" (25) and then face the consequences, which will more than likely be less severe after his parents calmed down. He states, "I didn't want to be around when they first got it. My mother gets very hysterical. She's not too bad after she gets something thoroughly digested, though" (51). In taking the...

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Uploaded by:   Quest4Glory

Date:   07/05/2004

Category:   Catcher in the Rye

Length:   10 pages (2,234 words)

Views:   14300

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