Protector Of Innocence: Holden Caulfield Of "Catcher In The Rye"

685 words - 3 pages

My most memorable character in a fictional piece of literature would probably have to be Holden Caulfield from J.D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye. The novel is one of the most influential books of the 20th century, and has frequently banned by schools, due to its use of profanity and sexuality.The story takes place when Holden, a sixteen year old boy, drops out of his fourth high school and struggles over the death of his younger brother Allie. Throughout the book, Holden criticizes and philosophizes about people who are boring, people who are insecure, and people who he considers “phony.” Born into a life of wealth and privilege, he looks down upon the upper-class world he occupies. He questions the values of his class and society and sometimes opposes conventions just for the sake of opposition. Holden is very angry and frustrated throughout most of the book.There are many characteristics that make Holden memorable to me. Some are memorable because I feel that I was able to relate to them in the past. Holden struggles between the path of adolescence and adulthood. He cannot stand the fact that adulthood requires being “phony,” and he would rather see people being their true selves and not acting. Being a “phony” is when one is not acting true to oneself. Holden uses it for describing the superficiality, hypocrisy, pretension, and shallowness that he encounters in the world around him. For example, teachers who “act like” teachers by assuming a different demeanor in class than they do in conversation or people who dress and act like the other members of their social class. Similarly to me, Holden does not enjoy when people act different just to impress others.Holden is also memorable because of the huge differences between us. Holden is extremely judgmental of almost everybody. He criticizes people who are boring, people who are insecure, and, above all, people who are “phony.” Holden likes passing judgment to such an extreme that it often very comical, like when...

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