As the book is set in the asses, the use Of expletives was frowned upon and Slinger has explored this concept. Holder commonly uses the word ‘Goddamn’. It illustrates his brutal honesty and outlook on the world. As it was appalling to use profanity but Holder constantly did, shows that Holder’s identity is made up of a rebellious characteristic that doesn’t fit into society, resembling an outcast that is frowned upon. As part of Holder’s jargon, qualifiers are used commonly.
Holder uses lavalieres to emphasis his uncertainty and insecurity about his knowledge, and trying to confirm to the reader that he is correct.
On page 3 Of the novel Holder uses qualifiers to show his intended thoughts and opinions on Pence Prep – The more expensive a school is, the more crooks it has – I’m not kidding. ” The qualifier of “I’m not kidding’ shows that Holder is dubious about his accusation, and showing the reader that he is opinionated in his outlook on the world, which contributes to his overall identity.
The symbolism by Slinger used throughout the novel, shows a deeper meaning in the way Holder looks out on the world. A major reoccurring symbol throughout the novel is the red hunting hat.
This hat acts as a medium through which Holder demonstrated his individuality. The hat, which he describes as one with “very, very long peaks” acts as a symbol of protection throughout the book. The color red not only symbolizes passion but also coincides with Allele and phoebe’s red hair ? his siblings who he adores and dollies – his protectors. In every instance the hat is mentioned, it is at a time where he needs protection or is being protected. When Holder is leaving the Wicker Bar in New York, drunk and with wet hair, the hat-check girl “made me [Holder] put it on before I went out, because my hair was still pretty wet. Here the red hunting hat is being used as a protector for Holder showing that his identity needs protecting by the two siblings with whom he loves. The symbol Of the Museum Of Natural History also holds great significance for Holder in the world. As the museum’s displays are frozen and still it shows that Holder wants this in his life. Holder loves this because “the best thing Hough, in that museum was that everything always stayed right where it was. ” He wants his world and his identity to never change, just like the Museum.
Due to the fact that his world was turned on its head when his brother Allele dies, he never wants it to change again. This demonstrates that Holder is searching for an identity that never changes, he wants to be the same, and feel the same and his world to be the same at all times and this is demonstrated through the symbol Of the museum. The ducks in the pond at Central Park hold a deep significance in the novel. Holder throughout the book displays his curiosity and constant interest in where the ducks from the central park pond go in the winter when it freezes over.
In a conversation with a taxi driver named Hurwitz Holder asks “Do you happen to know where they (the ducks] go in the wintertime by any chance? ‘ His constant questioning is because the ducks world and habitat is the duck pond in Central Park, much like Holder’s world is New York City. Holder seeks to find what happens to the duck when their “world” changes and freezes over, this is because Holder wants to know how they cope with drastic hanged, which is what Holder is trying to cope with throughout the book.
The ducks symbolism Holder’s search for identity in the need for belonging to something and coping with himself in a changing world. Furthermore, the carousel in the novel acts as a symbol for Holder’s quest for identity. The carousel constantly goes “around and around”, in circles never finding a beginning or end much like Holder’s search for his identity. While Holder watches his sister Phoebe on the carousel it is much like Holder watching his life constantly turning trying to find a beginning and end, trying o cope with change.
The carousel confirms Holder is struggling in the world to find his place – his identity. On the carousel, the bit or the gold ring on the Horses mouth acts as a symbol for Holder’s challenges in the world. Holder observes, “All the kids kept trying to grab for the gold ring,” showing that Holder knows that children are always reaching for a challenge and “you have to let them do it, and not say anything. ” Holder wishes his child life was like this, and so wants his sister to have this life so that she can find a way to cope with change and difference, because he cannot.
He says “if they fall off, they fall off, but its bad if you say anything to them. ” This summarizes that he seeks independence as part of his identity in the world. The themes used throughout The Catcher in the Rye also show Holder’s conceptual view on the world and the shaping Of his identity. Innocence is a major theme throughout the novel. Holder constantly tries to protect the innocence of children so that their lives do not become corrupt with difficult questions, challenges and changes. – Holder craves this childhood innocence constantly throughout the novel.
When he visits phoebe’s primary school he notices the words you” written on the wall. He didn’t want the innocent children to see this curse word written on their school wall because “they’d all think about it and maybe even worry about it for a couple of days,” and he doesn’t like the thought of children worrying about anything, instead remaining innocent and enjoying their life. So Holder scratches the words Off the wall despite the fact he sees it as “… Hopeless anyway. If you had a million years to do it in, you couldn’t rub out even half the you’ signs in the world.
This shows that Holder in himself doesn’t want the children’s identity as an innocent child to be damaged with profanity. Another major theme used throughout the book is alienation. Holder feels constantly alienated in the world, as his identity doesn’t suit the status quo of society. Holder believes that in the game of life he is on the “other side, where there aren’t any hot-shots. ” He feels excluded due to his identity and that he doesn’t fit in because Of what’s happened to him. Holder fails to try to fit in because he is tied up with the fact that he doesn’t fit in, in the first place.
In the juxtaposition of Sally Hayes and Jane Gallagher it demonstrates that Holder longs for companionship but lives off isolation and alienation. This adds to his identity, as he is confused about his stand in society. In conclusion, in The Catcher in the Rye, J. D. Slinger highlights Holder’s struggle for identity and finding a place in society. Through the use of jargon, symbols and themes, Holder Coalfield is portrayed to the reader as a confused character who has a conceptual view on the world but in the end longs for a personal identity that will allow him to feel accepted in society.
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