Integrity in Catcher in the Rye Essay

Submitted By Logan-Hand
Words: 396
Pages: 2

Integrity In Catcher in The Rye

Holden Marshall does have some flaws, but Salinger does give him a definite set of morals. Holden shows his integrity by displaying respect for women, protecting the innocence of youth, and being honest and unpretentious. However, Holden’s standards are so high that nobody can give him what he wants. In Catcher in the Rye, J.D. Salinger uses Holden’s pickiness in evaluating people to illustrate how no one can meet up to his very high standards of one’s personal integrity. Holden shows respect for women throughout the book, and gets angry when men do not respect women. One of the times Holden gets angry is when he senses that Stradlater is using jane only to “give her the time”. Holden became quite angry with the thought that "... he (Stradlater) could give the time to anybody he felt like" (p. 44). Holden deep down wishes that he could get anyone he wanted, and the fact that Stradlater can get anyone he wants and yet continues to objectify women makes holden completely furious. In addition to respecting women, Salinger explicitly shows Holden’s want to protect the innocence of children. The most important quote of the book is when Holden says "...I have to catch everybody if they start to go over the cliff... I'd just be the catcher in the rye and all" (173). This symbolizes holden trying to reserve everyone’s childhood innocence by saving them from falling off the cliff to adulthood. An instance when Holden feels upset with