Holden as a Teenager

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Holden as the Typical Teenager of Today

Holden Caulfield, portrayed in the J.D. Salinger novel Catcher in the Rye as an adolescent struggling to find his own identity, possesses many characteristics that easily link him to the typical teenager living today. The fact that the book was written many years ago clearly exemplifies the timeless nature of this work. Holden's actions are those that any teenager can clearly relate with. The desire for independence, the sexually related encounters, and the questioning of ones religion are issues that almost all teens have had or will have to deal with in their adolescent years. The novel and its main character's experiences can easily be related to and will forever link Holden with every member of society, because everyone in the world was or will be a teen sometime in their life.

The first and most obvious characteristic found in most teens, including Holden, would be the desire for independence. Throughout the novel, Holden is not once found wishing to have his parents help in any way. He has practically lived his entire life in dorms at prestigious schools, and has learned quite well how to be on his own. This tendency of teenagers took place in even in ancient history, where the freshly developed teen opts to leave the cave and hunt for is own food. Every teenager tries, in his or her own way, to be independent. Instead of admitting to ones parents of a wrongful deed, the teen tries covering up the mistake or avoiding it in hopes that they won't get in any trouble. They feel that they have enough intelligence to think through a problem without going to their parents for assistance. When Holden hears the news that he has been expelled from Pency, he concludes that his parents would not know of this for a few days. Therefore, he would wait from Saturday all the way to Wednesday, let his parents "get it and thoroughly digest it", and then face the consequences, which will more than likely be less severe...
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