Catcher In The Rye by J.D. Salinger

Liliana Medina

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Why do you think many readers identify so closely with Holden Caulfield? What does he stand for and how does he convey that?

I think many readers identify with Holden Caulfield due to him doing what all the teenager in his time where to afraid to do. Holden was seen as a rebel and defied the idea of how a teenager should act at that time. Holden Caulfield stood for changing the traditional idea of a teenager and letting teenagers discover new things and expressing their thoughts and ideas. Holden Caulfield convey that idea by speaking in a raw, unpolished voice ,and resisting becoming a conventional member of society.

Historical events prior to and during the time "The Catche rin the Rye" was published

"The Catcher in the Rye" was publishes it was in 1951. Prior to the book being published, life in America was very traditional. During the time the book was published Americans started having T.V.s in their home, which allowed teenagers to see more of how the world was. Also cars were becoming more affordable and more teens were driving. Letting teens drive allowed them to have more freedom. These events shaped the teenage readers responses to be more captivated to the novel. The novel gave teenagers a voice and gave them ideas on how to be independent.

What causes were americans commited to at the time and how did it impact societal change?

The men and women in America were committed to staying traditional and letting the women stay home, cook, and clean. While the men went to work and made the money for the family. Teens were committed to try and gain their freedom. Teenagers felt like they were not being heard since they were to young to act like adult and to old to act like a child. These commitments impacted societal change because it was the early creation of the modern life roles for men, women, and teens.

why was the book banned?

"The Catcher in the Rye" was banned by schools and libraries because adults believed that the book was too explicit for teenagers. They believed the book was "un-American" due to its rebellious language and its questioning of how the roles of society should be. The book was also banned to the fear that the novel would give teenagers ideas to be rebellious and try to do new dangerous thing. I believe the book was banned due to society at that time not being ready for change. I Think they were scared to see teenagers rebel and not becoming a conventional member of society.

Explantaion of " He criticized the values of society and resisted becoming a convetional member of society."

This quote means that Holden didn't believe the traditional idea of how a teenager should act or who they should become in society. Also how Holden rebelled from becoming a conventional member of society by trying to doing and saying the thing all teenagers wanted to do but were to afraid to do so.

what were "conventional" norms then ?

The "conventional" norms back then were that wives were supposed to stay at home, cook, clean, and take care of the children. While the husbands went to work and made the money, and the children/teenagers were supposed to be good, behave and listen to their parents. Teenagers were also supposed to be young, innocent, and naïve.