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Holden Caulfield

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S: Catcher In The Rye

FC: Holden Caulfield | By : Rebecca Ogilvie & Meghan Kingsbury

2: Allie's Baseball Mitt | "My brother Allie had this left-handed fielder's mitt. He was left-handed. The thing that was descriptive about it, though, was that he had poems written all over the fingers and the pocket and everywhere. In green ink." (Salinger 38) | The baseball mitt means a lot to Holden because it is the only thing he has in memory of his brother. "He got leukemia and died when we were up in Maine, on July 18, 1946." (38)

3: "I put on this hat that I'd bought in New York that morning. It was this red hunting hat, with one of those very, very long peaks." (17) | "The way I wore it, I swung the old peak way around to the back-very corny, I'll admit, but I liked it that way. I looked good in it that way." (18) | Holden's Hat

4: The checkers symbolize not wanting to move forward. Jane kept all her kings in the back and never moved them. (78) | Checkers

5: Holden got irritated by Ackley's bad hygiene and his bad manners. (23) | Ackley's Toenail Clippings

6: The carousel symbolizes growing up. "The things with kids is, if they want to grab for the gold ring, you have to let them do it, and not say anything. If they fall off, they fall off, but it's bad if you say anything." (211) Kids have to learn from their mistakes and do some things on their own. | Carousel

7: Holden and his sister, Phoebe got much closer after Allie's death. Holden makes sure to put a lot of effort into helping her become a better person and not like Holden. | Holden and Phoebe

8: "I was wondering if it would be frozen over when I got home, and if it was, where did the ducks go. I was wondering where the ducks went when the lagoon got all icy and frozen over." (13) The ducks represent Holden's future. He's preoccupied with where the ducks go which reflects that he's wondering where he's going to go in life. | Ducks in the Lake

9: Park | The park represents Holden's childhood. He refers to it as a place where he would go as a kid. It's also the location of the scene with the carousel.

10: "He's so good, he's almost corny, in fact. I don't exactly know what I mean by that, but I mean it. I certainly like to hear him play, but sometimes you feel like turning the goddam piano over" (84) This shows that Holden's moods change quickly and can become completely different than before. Holden's almost bipolar. | Piano

11: The alcohol is significant in the book because it symbolizes that Holden wants to grow up and doesn't want to be a teenager any longer. "They lose their jobs if they get caught selling to a minor. I'm a goddam minor" (70). He was always trying to buy alcohol but is never able to because of the age restrictions; he is not old enough to drink yet. | Alcohol

12: Pencey Prep is the school where Holden went to school. He separates himself from everybody else and considers everybody else 'phoneys'. Holden got expelled from Pencey Prep for failing all of his courses (16-26). | Pencey Prep

13: Museum | The museum represent Holden's past with Phoebe. The museum is also a place where nothing changes and everything is the same. Holden likes that, he wishes that for his future.

14: Skating Rink | The skating rink is one of the places that Holden and Sally go on their date. They went ice skating at Radio City because Sally wanted to. Holden suggested that the only reason Sally wanted to go skating was because "she wanted to see herself in one of those little skirts that just come down over their butt and all" (129). This shows that Holden mostly only looked at the negative side of things, considering Sally probably just wanted to go skating because she thought it would be fun.

15: Movie Tickets | Sally and Holden also went to the movies on their date. They went to go see The Lunts."the show wasn't as bad as some I've seen. It was on the crappy side, though" (125). This shows again that Holden is very pessimistic. He looked at all the bad things about the movie instead of looking at what he liked in the movie.

16: Train | Holden walks to the train station and takes the late train. He meets up with Ernest Morrow's mother. He makes up lies, telling her that he actually likes Ernest and so does everybody else at Pencey Prep even though it's not true. He also tell her that his name is Rudolph Schmidt which is actually the janitor's name and he also says that he is returning home because he's having a brain surgery. This shows that "Holden lies a lot and can easily get away with it (53-58)

17: Fencing Equipment | Holden left the fencing equipment for the school that he was responsible for on the subway, by accident.The fencing team is mad at Holden for this but Holden just tries to find the humor in the situation (3). This just shows that Holden doesn't take things seriously and always jokes around.

18: Phoeobe's Money | Phoebe gives Holden her Christmas money because he doesn't have any money When Phoebe gives Holden her money, he starts crying (161-162). This shows that Holden isn't just a "tough guy" that he likes to portray himself as. He can open himself up and be caring also.

19: Broken Record | The record symbolizes youth. The record plays the same song over and over again. Holden wants to give it to Phoebe because he wants her to stay a child. When the record breaks it symbolizes that there is a problem in his plan; Pheobe can't stay a child forever (115-116).

20: Hotel Room | Holden has a hotel room at the Edmont. He looks out across the hotel courtyard into the lighted windows on the other side and discovers a variety of bizarre acts taking place. One man dresses in women's clothing, and in another room a man and a woman take turns spitting mouthfuls of their drinks into each other's face (60-62).

21: Prostitute | On Holden's way back up to his room, the elevator attendant offers to send him a prostitute for $5 and Holden accepts. She is a young girl with a high voice. She sits on his lap and tries to seduce him, but he is extremely nervous and tells her he is unable to have sex because he is recovering from an operation on his “clavichord.” He pays her the $5 and asks her to leave, she claims that the price is $10 but he refuses to give her more (93-98). This shows that Holden can be very undecided. At one minute, he'll want to do something but all of a sudden he will change his mind.

22: Taxi | Holden takes taxis to get around everywhere. Most of the time, he tries to make conversation with the taxi drivers. In one instance, he asked his taxi driver where the ducks go in the winter. Holden has wondered this ever since he was little (13, 59-61).

23: Smoking | Holden wants to grow up. He smokes for the same reason that he drinks, he wants to seem more grown up. Smoking is considered to be a grown-up activity. Even though he thinks that the cigarettes taste bad, he still smokes them.

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  • By: Rebecca O.
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  • Title: Holden Caulfield
  • Catcher In The Rye Project
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  • Started: over 4 years ago
  • Updated: over 4 years ago

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