The Catcher in the Rye

The Catcher in the Rye Symbols

What Holden most wants to be in life is someone who stands on the edge of a cliff in a rye field catching children before they fall. This image is symbolic of his desire to…

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Holden’s red hunting hat is a symbol of his self-identification and alienation. More specifically, it’s a manifestation of the fact that he often purposefully isolates himself from people, going out of his way to…

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Holden’s fixation on the ducks in the Central Park lagoon represents his fear of change. When he worries about where the ducks go during the wintertime, he finds himself unsettled by the idea that…

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If the ducks in Central Park represent Holden’s fear of change, then the Museum of Natural History represents the comfort he takes in the idea of constancy or stasis. He has been visiting the…

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