Catcher in the Rye Essay

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HEnglish10: period 6

November 7, 2012

Typical Teenagers

When one is feeling depressed or saddened they usually isolate themselves

from the world. People that are feeling lost or alone do not like to socialize with

others. In the book “The Catcher in the Rye,” by J.D. Salinger, the main character is

named Holden Caulfield. Holden goes through many challenges throughout this

novel trying to find himself and his voice a lot like some people today try to do the

same. In this book there are many things that Holden does to try to find himself and

his place in the world. Salinger uses ducks, Allie, and alcohol that are used as

symbols to prove that teenage years often result to isolation, depression, and one

trying to find themselves.

In this novel Salinger uses ducks as a symbol of Holden’s isolation to the world. On the way to the hotel in a cab Holden asks the cab driver some interesting questions: “'You know those ducks in that lagoon right near Central Park South? That little lake? By any chance, do you happen to know where they go, the ducks, when it gets all frozen over? Do you happen to know, by any chance?'" (78). Holden is relating himself to the ducks, how he is lost and isolated from the world and does not know where to go. Holden is curious about the ducks and where they go when they can no longer live in their home just like Holden not being able to live in his home, he is very lost and confused because he is now entering adulthood. After Tinney 2

asking the taxi driver where the ducks go when the pond freezes over he turns around and looks at Holden like he is crazy: “He turned around and looked at me like I was a madman. ‘What’re ya tryna do, bud?’ he said. ‘kid me?’ ‘no- I was just interested, that’s all.’” (78,79). This shows how self-conscious and hesitant he is to not truthfully answer the taxi drivers question. Holden actually wants to learn about the ducks because he is referring the ducks to...
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