Saturday, January 30, 2010

RIP Holden Caulfield

I first heard of the Catcher in the Rye when I was 10 or 11 - it was being broadcast on the Russian Radio literature series. I only listened to 2-3 programs, and couldn't really put the plot together but something drew me to the novel in
a strange way, perhaps the charismatic nature of Holden?

In any case, 7 years later I read it for my high school curriculum, borrowing a library copy - a second edition printed in 1958. The library never got it back - I kept pretending to "oops, forget it, and realize that it is too late",
and I am now across the ocean. I treasure and re-read the book. The older I get, the more it applies. The catcher in the rye is not just for teens, it's for everybody. What makes Holden's character relevant is the ability to see insincerity and falseness. These two are more around these days than they have ever been, and so Holden Caulfield continues.....

Salinger was the anti-fame hero - in this day and age of people looking for and getting easy fame and publicity without deserving it, JD avoided it at all costs. I hope this book is never made into a movie. Holden should remain on a book page quietly paving a path of truth for all of us.

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