Essay on 2 Catcher In The Rye

Submitted By pvbaillou001
Words: 954
Pages: 4

Peddiedra V. Baillou
Professor Bermudas
ENC 1102
Discussion #2
The Catcher in The Rye #2

In the second part of The Catcher in the Rye; symbolism surrounded Holden as he wandered the streets of New York city. Everything from the ducks in the pond that Holden cannot seem to let go of to his failed attempt at having a nice time with Sally Hayes, Holden's problems relate to his personality traits that he does not tell us directly. Surprisingly, this half of the book is not much different in the fact that it, too, compares the happenings in the life of Holden Caulfield to a much more universal level of feeling, emotion, and thought due to post war trauma. The one section, in these chapters of the book, that reveals something that Holden actually seems to care about is when he is driving in a taxi, thinking about the ducks of Central Park. "Well, you know the ducks that swim around in it? Do you happen to know where they go in the wintertime, by any chance?" (Salinger 81). For some odd reason, it is these ducks that give Holden security. Ironically, I find the ducks to be a symbol of Holden. They, like Holden, disappeared without anyone knowing or caring. In essence, this is exactly what Holden did when he left Pency so arbitrarily. Like the ducks, no understands him, nor do they care to. They and Holden alike took off with no direction, not knowing when they would return. Apart from the ducks, it seemed to be the museum, which was a point of both interests. This, in fact, is for legitimate reasons. The Random House Unabridged Dictionary gives the definition of a museum to be "a building or place where works of art or other objects of a permanent value are kept and displayed"( Museum 1). The key word in the definition is permanent, however, Holden said that, "the best thing, though, in that museum was that everything always stayed right where it was, nobody'd move. You could go there a hundred thousand times and everything would still be in place, nothing would be different. He finds security in those things that stay constant, just like the ducks of Central Park. His insecurities force Holden to clutch on to things in order him to feel content. The museum was one of those things that Holden knew would remain exactly as he remembered it and he liked that thought. In a world of questions, problems, and phonies, the fact that the museum and all of its exhibits would stay as they were was one of the things that Holden could trust. This shows him in constant battle with childhood verses adulthood. Therefore, Holden would love to live in a world where everything stays frozen, where nothing changes. This way, Holden can never grow up to be an adult.. It is Holden's rejection that forces him to act the way he does in these chapters. To compensate for having no friends his own age, he looks to the older and younger. Even though immature, Holden tries to act like an adult by smoking and drinking in hopes that he will find companionship. He even admits, though, "I'm a goddamn minor" (Salinger.70). When this approach fails, he goes to the complete opposite of the spectrum. Phoebe was always someone he felt like talking to on the phone. The reason why Holden has such high regard for his sister in a world of "phonies" is two-fold. First, Holden comes across as being somewhat immature. This would cause him to find comfort in talking to a younger person. Secondly, it seems as if Phoebe is really the only person that will listen to him, let alone not reject his presence. Holden feels even more lonely in these few chapters after being rejected repeatedly from the other characters. This leads him to dwell on his childhood love, Jane. Once again, he is fixated on these past memories with her