Thursday, October 6, 2016

Life on a Scale

Actual Summative:

Because Allie-Holden’s precious little brother- and his death was such a groundbreaking event in Holden’s life, analyzing this event can be crucial in understanding Holden. Catcher in the Rye is all about Holden- anything else is rather insignificant(comparatively). Because the author, J.D. Salinger, reflected what was probably an image of himself onto Holden, there’s no debate about Holden’s importance within the novel. The only way to understand Catcher in the Rye, then, is to understand Holden. In doing this, we have to take a deeper look at the event that may have changed Holden forever. In the book, Holden is a critical, ‘strange’ teenager that perceives the world as one full of liars and phonies. In his world full of things he simply cannot like, he has one person he looks up to, and this is Allie. Holden idealizes Allie in a way that can only be perceived as abnormal. It is extremely unnatural to see a teenager to compliment his dead brother the way Holden does. And this is why I chose to write an excerpt(prologue) to the story- Holden’s last day with Allie(the day before Allie dies). I figured this is the most appropriate way to answer this question because it can explain many things about Holden- what Holden thought about Allie before he died, what things he cannot remember because of the immense pain surrounding the memory and so on. This passage would be taken from the first chapter of the book, in which Holden briefly introduces his past and family. It would have been removed from the final edit because the character called Holden could ironically be understood better if he (as a narrator) chose to leave his past a blank slate. This excerpt is written in Holden’s point of view, a few years after Allie’s death but a few before the actual story.

Holden is such a complex character that, when I first read the story, I felt that it was almost impossible to understand him with his character alone. This is why I decided to use Allie- perhaps the person most precious to Holden- as a key towards understanding Holden. By providing a little insight as to the type of relationship Holden had with his little brother, the readers can take a step forward in understanding the complex character.

Why was Allie such an important figure to Holden, who hates almost everybody? Why was Allie's death such a significant event in Holden's life?

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