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Causes of Alienation in JD Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye


Causes of Alienation in JD Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye

Jerome David Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye tells the story of Holden Caulfield, a young man researching in Pency Prep who alienates himself from the society since he feels a lot different from the remainder of the individuals and also since he can not appear to agree anyone. Caulfield narrates his journey from place to position upon finding out the news that he is rejected from the said school.

Alienation is the current motif of The Catcher in the Rye. The truth that the narration of the story remains in the perspective of nothing else than the primary personality, Holden Caulfield, reveals that the tale remains in the very first person point of view. There is no other point of view present in the narrative which exposes a feeling of isolation in the development of the story.

Salinger depicts the character of Holden Caulfield as a young emotionally unstable person who is not fond of engaging with people. He is a smart kid that despises pretensions around him that it prevails for him to detest them. Being eliminated from college more enhanced his sensation of alienation that he makes a decision to leave college very early instead and also go to Manhattan where his parents live.

Causes of Alienation in The Catcher in the Rye

J. D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye, an unique released originally for grown-up readers illustrates the seclusion of the young male storyteller, Holden Caulfield. He comes to be physically, intellectually, and psychologically detached from the culture due to his extremely reflective personality. He is an intelligent young man that has a great deal of reflective suggestions and also frank concepts about life.

In addition to the truth that he makes lots of informal statements, he is composing his tale from a psychological asylum or sanitarium. The introduction of Holden already shows his alienation from culture as he defines his present place. “I’ll simply tell you about this madman stuff that occurred to me around last Christmas just before I obtained rather run-down and had to appear below and take it easy” (Salinger 1).

Where else can one be most banished? Obviously, mental institutions are the most effective place to expatriation individuals as they are totally separated from the “normal” as well as “regular” individuals. The frame of mind of Caulfield has plainly distanced him from the uniformities of his culture. Nevertheless, Caulfield is an intellectual.

He loves philosophizing and pondering regarding specific concerns also the minutest information. His beliefs are normally against consistency. He does not adapt to what the society determines and a lot of the moment he even detests individuals’s actions. For a circumstances, Caulfield talks to Sally concerning autos and also gives the readers some understandings about how he views people who purchase cars and trucks upon buying one several months or weeks ago.

Take most individuals, they love automobiles. They stress if they obtain a little scratch on them, and also they’re always talking about the amount of miles they reach a gallon, as well as if they get a new car currently they start thinking about trading it in for one that’s also newer. I do not also like old cars. I indicate they don’t even interest me. I prefer to have a goddam steed. A steed goes to least human, for God’s benefit (Salinger ).

His means of considering concerning things and also problems makes him an intelligent thinker that is very watchful around his surroundings. His observation exposes the pretension and also over consumerism of people. He is humanistic on the within despite his seemingly continual rage with other individuals.

However, his attitude towards life as well as humankind is always offered to be unclear as his ideas are typically impulsive and spontaneous. Often they can also be inconsistent such as his statement regarding battle. “Anyway, I’m sort of grateful they’ve obtained the atomic bomb designed. If there’s ever before one more war, I’m mosting likely to rest right the heck on top of it. I’ll volunteer for it, I swear to God I will certainly” (Salinger 141). This way of thinking turns into one of the reasons why he is considered to be isolated from most of his individuals.

An additional aspect that shows his alienations is that Caulfield additionally speaks much about fatality. Death is a phenomenon that every male needs to go via alone; therefore, it is sensible to think that a person that speaks about it in a lighter and positive way has the propensity welcome life as an individual who can make it through by himself.

Through contemplating regarding the thoughts of fatality, Caulfield is able to go beyond the message of seclusion to the viewers. His non-traditional means of talking through the visitors as well as voicing out his viewpoints makes him an extremely different person to chat with. He mentions his death as something which he is not worried of. Most of the time, individuals who believes this way are taken into consideration to be not emotionally in shape.

Kid, when you’re dead, they truly repair you up. I want to heck when I do die someone has feeling sufficient to just discard me in the river or something. Anything other than sticking me in a goddam cemetery. People coming and also putting a number of flowers on your stomach on Sunday, and also all that crap. Who desires flowers when you’re dead? No One (Salinger).

Salinger, as the writer as well as reflection of Holden Caulfield, had actually also preferred reclusion from star. In a quick bio of Salinger, it is uncovered that he gave up the privileges if popularity, riches as well as recognition as he determined to leave New york city as well as relocate to the countryside where he can live his life in seclusion.

In spite of, Salinger’s constant denial that Caulfield is an autobiographical character that stands for a life element of Salinger himself, there are resemblances in between Salinger and Caulfield’s perspectives and also views in the direction of life. It is quite reasonable to state that Caulfield’s alienation from culture is his own defense mechanism to protect himself from the hypocrisies as well as phoniness of the world.

Sex and the adult years is also among the major motifs in the tale that could even more clarify Caulfield’s option to remove himself from the culture. When he decides to call a previous pole dancer whom he does not recognize however whose number he has actually received from a friend, he highlights his macho wishes for flesh. He is so tired with his life roaming around the streets as well as resorts that he believes that an one-night stand with a lady might help him take the dullness away. “In my mind, I’m probably the greatest sex lunatic you ever saw” (Salinger 56).

As a sexually grown child, he is currently knowledgeable about his sexual desires. It is sensible to state that the story takes place in a time when Caulfield is experiencing sexual awakening yet is perplexed regarding the issue of libidos. “Sex is something I truly do not understand also warm. You never know where the heck you are.

I maintain composing these sex guidelines for myself, and after that I break them immediately” (Salinger 63). Sexual desire and also inability to meet it is portrayed in this story to be something that is partly responsible for Caulfield’s choice to keep away from the public. He is still a virgin in spite of his plenty intimate minutes with some girls he had actually dated. It is presumed that his being a virgin presses him right into a sense of final thought since a lot of his peers have actually currently engaged to sex.


Alienation describes the state of one’s isolation from culture or a specific culture. This usually refers to an individual that has peculiar and also unusual personality which forces him or her to become pushed away from a certain group. Holden Caulfield in The Catcher in the Rye is taken into consideration to be estranged from culture as a result of his non-conformist mindset.

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He has actually estranged himself from society due to his belief that he is different from them. J.D. Salinger offers his character as divided from the normal society in the emotional, mental, or psychological elements. This way of identifying Caulfield makes it possible for the readers to totally put themselves in the scenario of the characters.

It is additionally important to keep in mind that the book is consistent in offering the perspective of Caulfield alone; as a result, visitors are more emotionally entailed and also attached with the character. Caulfield is likewise considered to be not the common kind of hero however more like an anti-hero that has the ability to acquire the compassion of the readers.

Works Cited

Salinger, Jerome David. The Catcher in the Rye. Little, Brown, 1951.

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