Catcher in the Rye

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Alex MorganPd 8
4/16/10Research pap.

Catcher in the Rye is a book of many themes of many different types of different things. The main character of the book is Holden Caulfield, this guy has major problems. He’s alone and he knows it, he hates everyone and judges them too. Some themes of this story are the sadness, the lies and deceit, and Holden’s youth. Every one of these themes describe Holden in different ways, mostly it describes what he’s like.

Sadness permeates The Catcher in the Rye. Main character Holden Caulfield finds nearly everything depressing, from receiving gifts to hearing people say "please." The conclusion drawn, however, is that isolation and alienation from others is the greatest source of unhappiness. The difficulty comes from the fact that escaping this isolation is a battle in itself – one that can often be, unfortunately, quite depressing ( For example here Holden wants to make connections with people, but to do so means to make an emotional investment that will probably end up depressing him. Here, he seems to decide that he would rather feel sad about leaving a place than feel sad about the fact that he doesn't get to feel connected enough to feel sad. “What I was really hanging around for, I was trying ... to feel some kind of good-by. I mean I've left schools and places I didn't even know I was leaving them. I hate that. I don't care if it's a sad good-by or a bad good-by, but when I leave a place I like to know I'm leaving it. If you don't, you feel even worse (”

Deception in The Catcher and the Rye takes the form of what narrator Holden Caulfield calls "phoniness." This refers to anything and everything from pretense to social snobbery to language to appearances – all elements of the adult world as opposed to the world of phoniness. Disgusted with this...
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