Coming of Age

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Around the world there are many themes that we find over and over in many cultures and from many periods in time. One of the reoccurring themes that everyone goes through in the lifetime is the theme of coming of age. This occurs when a young person goes through the transition from childhood to adulthood and has life experiences that matures a person. We all have experienced a coming of age story by reading them in books, seeing them on TV or in movies, or maybe even personal experiences based on ones culture. It’s clear that coming of age is a crucial element of our self-representations and conceptions.

Generally, all of living is a process of coming of age as seen in the novel, Catcher in the Rye. Holden Caulfield, who is sixteen-year-old boy with the mind of a ten year old. He thinks of innocence as important in the beginning of the novel. But later on in the book, Holden slowly grows to be an adult. For example, when Holden gets soaking wet by rain when he is watching his little sister ride the carousal he “felt so damn happy all of a sudden”(213). This symbolizes Holden entering adulthood because he realizes the happiness in life. He realizes that he is too big for the carousel and is happy that his sister is happy. Holden’s childish personality continued to wash away as he reached a stage of maturity.

Over the course of the novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, Scout is taken from a position of innocence, in which she believes that she is safe and that there aren’t many “bad people” in the world, to the position where she has witnessed some of the bad things that have happened but realizes that she is not entirely safe. That is tested at the end of the novel when Scout was attacked while walking home with her brother Jem. Similarities were show in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Hucks maturity begins to grow as he first starts to show emotions toward a runaway slave, and by the end of the novel, has grown up to the point where, when Jim, is captured, Huck...
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