English 11 Advanced
September 13, 2011
Importance of the Title The Catcher in the Rye
In The Catcher in the Rye by J.D Salinger, the major plot line consist of a young teenager named Holden Caulfield who is approaching the fears of adulthood. Holden is extremely lost throughout the book not knowing how to embrace adulthood and has very little assistance from adults. The reader first sees Holden’s immature behavior through his explosion from the Pencey Prep School. Holden is failing all of his classes except English and is asked to leave the prep school over the winter break. Holden leaves the school a couple of days before he is kicked out and embarks on a journey where his is trapped in between adulthood and childhood. Holden engages in many adult activities such as drinking, smoking, and ordering a prostitute but he never is able to leave childhood and fully become an adult which eventually causes Holden to have a mental breakdown. The title The Catcher in the Rye carries a large importance in the plot of the story and his relationship with Phoebe as well as in Holden’s dream occupation.
The plot in The Catcher in the Rye deals with the transition between childhood and adulthood shown through Holden’s eyes which is related to the title of the book. Holden is stuck in between childhood and adulthood but unlike most teenagers he has no support or parenting through these years. Holden wishes to catch these teenagers who are struggling with adulthood and keep them young and truthful. He dislikes every adult or classmate claiming them as “phonies” and he only seems to like small children such as Phoebe for their innocent nature. Holden wishes to be the preserver of this innocence and keep all children from growing up and heading out into the corrupt adult world. He visualizes this “catcher” to be someone who snatches children before they jump off the cliff which symbolizes growing up and turning into an adult. Holden believes it...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document