English 430: Contemporary Writers
Dr. Gail S. Corso
September 29th, 2010
Analysis Paper 1
In the two pieces of work, The Crucible and The Catcher in the Rye, the tragic effects of the lies that take place by the characters have a big impact in many different ways. The tragedies that occurred in Holden’s life and the depression he has encountered make him want to tell lies because he cannot face reality in The Catcher in the Rye. Most of the Characters in The Crucible are lying also, if not to them self—then to other people. The twist in the story is that by telling the truth, you die, but you also gain your freedom.
In J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye, he writes about a young man who is very distraught after World War II. Holden is this character’s name, and he does not understand society and the surroundings he lives in. He keeps referring back to how everyone and everything around him is a phony, and makes himself seem unreliable by telling the reader that he lies openly. Since the readers know that Holden is a habitual liar, one may never know the difference from when he is telling the truth or when he is telling another one of his stories. Time and time again, Holden brings to our attention that a lot of the time he does not even notice that he is lying or even contradicting himself, which is another thing he does often.
Also, the fact that Holden just failed out of school, sends him further into depression, and what seems to me, a longing for the lies he tells to actually be reality. Holden will make statements that seem to make sense, but which upon a closer look, do not add up. For example, when Holden goes on about how his brother used to be an amazing short story-writer, but now that he has sold his material to Hollywood he is just as phony as everyone else. He knows he is a liar, but he refuses to acknowledge that this means he is a phony himself. He is so quick to pass severe judgments on others, but not so quick to see...
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