Answer: By “phony,” Holden means someone who is inauthentic and living on the surface as opposed to actually seeing the world plainly and living authentically, not marketing out to artifice. Holden is deeply disappointed in those that cannot watch past life's mundane duties and trivialities.

You are watching: The catcher in the rye discussion questions


What is the meaning of the novel’s title?

Answer: Holden holds onto a song around a catcher in the rye that catches all the kids in his route simply prior to they run off a cliff, rescuing them from doom. Holden himself either desires to be such a catcher, who rescues children, because he believes they are the only civilization who are actual in the people, or he desires to be rescued by the catcher.


Why does Holden slug Stradlater on at Pencey?

Answer: Holden is in love via Jane Gallagher, one of the few girls he has actually allowed himself to gain close to. When he finds out that Stradlater had a date through her and also treats the totality affair so casually, he cannot host in his rage.


What is the significance of the red hunter's hat that Holden wears?

Answer: Both Phoebe and Allie had red hair, so Holden's red hunter's cap, with its childish echoes, is his method of bonding via both of them and retaining his innocence.


Why does Holden ultimately leave Pencey?

Answer: Holden is kicked out for failing also many type of classes, however he ultimately chooses to leave early on to get amethod from all the phonies who are making him miserable. Specifically, he is fleeing Stradlater on, who has co-opted the one and just girl he truly loves, Jane Gallagher.


What are some of the things that “kill” Holden, in his words?

Answer: In basic, the things that make Holden feel emotional (“killing” him) involve kids. When he reads Phoebe's notebook, or as soon as he remembers Allie's foibles, he can't block the surging emotions that overflow his defenses.


Why does Holden cling to the innocence of children so deeply?

Answer: Holden has yet to recover from the stark cruelties of adulthood that so easily stripped him of childhood innocence. Allie was taken from him cruelly, and then Holden immediately had actually to undertaking to school, where he was taunted by classmates. Holden can't check out a method to reacquire his childhood innocence.


Why can't Holden pressure himself to sleep through the prostitute that concerns his motel room?

Answer: Holden simply desires the comfort of someone he have the right to talk to. He cannot lug himself to numb the loneliness and pain long enough to sleep with someone. On top of this, he is a virgin, so it is rather obvious he desires his first time to be special.


Why does Holden lastly lash out at Sally Hawkins?

Answer: Though Sally is rather pretty and Holden enjoys having her on his arm, inevitably he cannot put up via her “phoniness.” Sally cares about appearances and also the superficial trappings of condition, yet Holden cares just around having someone he have the right to relate to. He would certainly rather be lonely than have to interact via a phony.

See more: Why Is The Constitution Called A Bundle Of Compromises, What Was Bundle Of Compromises


Why does Holden eventually capitulate and come ago residence with Phoebe at the end?

Answer: Holden wants to distance himself from human being as far as feasible so that he never has to endure the pain of loving someone and also then shedding them aacquire. After Allie, he cannot take an additional heartbreak. He desires to spare himself the pain of possibly losing Phoebe or seeing her prosper up by gaining as much away from her as feasible. But as soon as she insists on accompanying him, Holden cannot bear to destroy her life, either by letting her come via him or by leaving without her.

Next off SectionTest Yourself! - Quiz 1Previous SectionRelated LinksBuy Study GuideHow To Cite in MLA FormatRoss, J.J.. Soman Chainani and also Adam Kissel, October 10, 2008 and also ed. "The Catcher in the Rye Essay Questions"., 30 September 2009 Internet. Cite this page