Anyone who has read J.D. Salinger's New Yorker stories--particularly A Perfect Day for Bananafish, Uncle Wiggily in Connecticut, The Laughing Man, and For Esme With Love and Squalor--will not be surprised by the fact that his first novel is full of children. The hero-narrator of The Catcher in the Rye is an ancient child of sixteen, a native New Yorker named Holden Caulfield. Through circumstances that tend to preclude adult, secondhand description, he leaves his prep school in Pennsylvania and goes underground in New York City for three days. The boy himself is at once too simple and too complex for us to make any final comment about him or his story. Perhaps the safest thing we can say about Holden is that he was born in the world not just strongly attracted to beauty but, almost, hopelessly impaled on it. There are many voices in this novel: children's voices, adult voices, underground voices-but Holden's voice is the most eloquent of all. Transcending his own vernacular, yet remaining marvelously faithful to it, he issues a perfectly articulated cry of mixed pain and pleasure. However, like most lovers and clowns and poets of the higher orders, he keeps most of the pain to, and for, himself. The pleasure he gives away, or sets aside, with all his heart. It is there for the reader who can handle it to keep. Amazon.com Review Since his debut in 1951 as The Catcher in the Rye, Holden Caulfield has been synonymous with "cynical adolescent." Holden narrates the story of a couple of days in his sixteen-year-old life, just after he's been expelled from prep school, in a slang that sounds edgy even today and keeps this novel on banned book lists. It begins, "If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you'll probably want to know is where I was born and what my lousy childhood was like, and how my parents were occupied and all before they had me, and all that David Copperfield kind of crap, but I don't feel like going into it, if you want to know the truth. In the first place, that stuff bores me, and in the second place, my parents would have about two hemorrhages apiece if I told anything pretty personal about them." His constant wry observations about what he encounters, from teachers to phonies (the two of course are not mutually exclusive) capture the essence of the eternal teenage experience of alienation. Review Novel by J.D. Salinger, published in 1951. The influential and widely acclaimed story details the two days in the life of 16-year-old Holden Caulfield after he has been expelled from prep school. Confused and disillusioned, he searches for truth and rails against the "phoniness" of the adult world. He ends up exhausted and emotionally ill, in a psychiatrist's office. After he recovers from his breakdown, Holden relates his experiences to the reader. --none
J. D. Salinger's 1951 novel, The Catcher in the Rye, is the definitive coming-of-age novel and Holden Caulfield remains one of the most famous characters in modern literature. This jargon-free guide to the text sets The Catcher in the Rye in its historical, intellectual and cultural contexts, offering analyses of its themes, style and structure, and presenting an up-to-date account of its critical reception.
Five essays focus on various aspects of the novel from its ideology within the context of the Cold War and portrait of a particular American subculture to its account of patterns of adolescent crisis and rich and complex narrative structure.
Peter G. Beidler's Reader's Companion is an indispensable guide for teachers, students, and general readers who want fully to appreciate Salinger's perennial bestseller. Now nearly six decades old, The Catcher in the Rye contains references to people, places, books, movies, and historical events that will puzzle many twenty-first-century readers. Beidler's guide provides some 250 explanations to help readers make sense of the culture through which Holden Caulfield stumbles as he comes of age. It provides a map showing the various stops in Holden's Manhattan odyssey. Of particular interest to readers whose native language is not English is the glossary of more than a hundred terms, phrases, and slang expressions.In his introductory essay, “Catching The Catcher in the Rye,” Beidler discusses such topics as the three-day time line for the novel, the way the novel grew out of two earlier-published short stories, the extent to which the novel is autobiographical, what Holden looks like, and the reasons for the enduring appeal of the novel.The many photographs in the Reader's Companion give fascinating glimpses into the world that Holden has made famous. Beidler also provides discussion of some of the issues that have engaged scholars down through the years: the meaning of Holden's red hunting hat, whether Holden writes his novel in an insane asylum, Mr. Antolini's troubling actions, and Holden's close relationship with his sister and his two brothers.Readers of A Reader's Companion to J. D. Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye will wonder how they managed without it before.
Thoroughly researched and engagingly written, this book seeks to illuminate a timeless classic in relation to its author, its beloved protagonist, and its cultural context decade by decade. It grapples with the novel’s major themes, like WWII, the main character’s contempt for privilege, and the assassins who cite the book as inspiration.
Insight Study Guides are written by experts and cover a range of popular literature, plays and films. Designed to provide insight and an overview about each text for students and teachers, these guides endeavor to develop knowledge and understanding rather than just provide answers and summaries.
J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye (1951) is a twentieth-century classic. Despite being one of the most frequently banned books in America, generations of readers have identified with the narrator, Holden Caulfield, an angry young man who articulates the confusion, cynicism and vulnerability of adolescence with humour and sincerity. This guide to Salinger’s provocative novel offers: an accessible introduction to the text and contexts of The Catcher in the Rye a critical history, surveying the many interpretations of the text from publication to the present a selection of new critical essays on the The Catcher in the Rye, by Sally Robinson, Renee R. Curry, Denis Jonnes, Livia Hekanaho and Clive Baldwin, providing a range of perspectives on the novel and extending the coverage of key critical approaches identified in the survey section cross-references between sections of the guide, in order to suggest links between texts, contexts and criticism suggestions for further reading. Part of the Routledge Guides to Literature series, this volume is essential reading for all those beginning detailed study of The Catcher in the Rye and seeking not only a guide to the novel, but a way through the wealth of contextual and critical material that surrounds Salinger’s text.
Examines the life of the reclusive author of Catcher in the Rye including his encounters with celebrities, his love life, his devotion to eastern religion and his conflicted relationship with his success. Reprint.
The original CliffsNotes study guides offer expert commentary on major themes, plots, characters, literary devices, and historical background. The latest generation of titles in this series also features glossaries and visual elements that complement the classic, familiar format. CliffsNotes on The Catcher in the Rye introduces you to a coming-of-age novel with a twist. J.D. Salinger's best-known work is more realistic, more lifelike and authentic than some other representatives of the genre. Get to know the unforgettable main character, Holden Caulfield, as he navigates the dangers and risks of growing up. This study guide enables you to keep up with all of the major themes and symbols of the novel, as well as the characters and plot. You'll also find valuable information about Salinger's life and background. Other features that help you study include Character analyses of major players A character map that graphically illustrates the relationships among the characters Critical essays A review section that tests your knowledge A Resource Center full of books, articles, films, and Internet sites Classic literature or modern modern-day treasure — you'll understand it all with expert information and insight from CliffsNotes study guides.
Anyone who has read J.D. Salinger's New Yorker stories, particularly A Perfect Day for Bananafish, Uncle Wiggily in Connecticut, The Laughing Man, and For Esme--With Love and Squalor, will not be surprised by the fact that his first novel is full of children. The hero-narrator of THE CATCHER IN THE RYE is an ancient child of sixteen, a native New Yorker named Holden Caulfield. Through circumstances that tend to preclude adult, secondhand description, he leaves his prep school in Pennsylvania and goes underground in New York City for three days. The boy himself is at once too simple and too complex for us to make any final comment about him or his story. Perhaps the safest thing we can say about Holden is that he was born in the world not just strongly attracted to beauty but, almost, hopelessly impaled on it. There are many voices in this novel: children's voices, adult voices, underground voices--but Holden's voice is the most eloquent of all. Transcending his own vernacular, yet remaining marvelously faithful to it, he issues a perfectly articulated cry of mixed pain and pleasure. However, like most lovers and clowns and poets of the higher orders, he keeps most of the pain to, and for, himself. The pleasure he gives away, or sets aside, with all his heart. It is there for the reader who can handle it to keep.