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  • 1. The Catcher in the Rye By J.D. Salinger
  • 2. JEROME DAVID SALINGER The Catcher in the Rye
  • 3. J.D. Salinger • Born 1919 in New York City to parents Sol and Miriam; father was Jewish, mother, Catholic.
  • 4. J.D. Salinger • Flunked out of a progressive school • Enrolled in Valley Forge Military Academy • Distinguished himself as writer in second semester of night class at Colombia University.
  • 5. J.D. Salinger • Constantly expressed the desire to be a well-known author • Started a life-long pattern of continuous writing • 1941: “Slight Rebellion Off Madison”, in The New Yorker • “Slight Rebellion” is a precursor to The Catcher in the Rye
  • 6. J.D. Salinger • Served in WWII: was one of first soldiers to enter a liberated concentration camp • Was treated for shell shock after the war
  • 7. J.D. Salinger • Published additional works: –The Catcher in the Rye (1951) –Nine Stories –Franny and Zooey –Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters and Seymour: An Introduction • Met and began correspondence with Ernest Hemingway while overseas; E.H. called Salinger “a helluva talent”
  • 8. J.D. Salinger • Catcher was a best seller • Salinger did not like the fame, started refusing interviews • “Uncle Wiggily in Connecticut”, a short story, was adapted to film: My Foolish Heart; Salinger hated it • Salinger became increasingly reclusive
  • 9. Salinger the Recluse • Moved to Cornish, NH • Interviewed by high school students; interview turned into feature piece • Salinger built a 6.5-foot fence around his property • Refused to answer fan mail • Avoided the press
  • 10. Controversy • Two unflattering memoirs about him: his daughter and his former lover • Fought publication of his letters in court • Fought a “sequel” to Catcher • Refused any film adaptations • Died at age 91 in January 2010.
  • 11. THE CATCHER IN THE RYE The Catcher in the Rye
  • 12. The Catcher in the Rye • Published in 1951 • Has sold over 65 million copies—more than the dictionary.
  • 13. The Catcher in the Rye Historically banned for vulgar language and sexual content
  • 14. The Catcher in the Rye • Mark David Chapman had the book in his pocket when he was arrested for shooting John Lennon.
  • 15. Praise • Time magazine named it one of the best novels of the 20th century. • For many Catcher is not only a coming of age story; reading it is a coming of age “rite of passage”
  • 16. What is it about? • Tells the story of a teenager, Holden Caulfield, who is expelled from his private school in the late 1940’s. • He takes us on his 48 hour journey across NYC.
  • 17. • The book deals with sex, alcohol, school, teachers, hypocrisy, family, superficial society, and being a teenager. • The plot is narrated “stream of consciousness” style.
  • 18. Holden Caulfield
  • 19. Holden Caulfield • Holden is the main character and narrator. • He is 16 years old. • He has a kid sister named Phoebe. • He thinks most people are “phonies”.
  • 20. • He listens to jazz music, which was popular amongst teens in the 1950s. • Listening to jazz and rock was considered rebellious.
  • 21. The 1950’s • The 1950’s was an era of change, something Holden Caulfield is not ready to accept.
  • 22. Briefly…Post-War America • Symbols and signs of optimism and wealth: *the car- gaudy colors & chrome * the supermarket *home appliances * the suburbs
  • 23. The Problem? • While the mainstream was embracing the consumerism and suburban family, how do you think those that didn’t embrace it felt?
  • 24. Themes • Youthful innocence and loss • Alienation and isolation of the individual in modern society • Failure to live up to parental and society’s expectations • Longing for truth • Adolescent misfits
  • 25. Style • The novel is written in informal English and is full of slang and profanities. • When the novel was first published, people were horrified by the language. • Some critics went through and counted how many times profane words were used.
  • 26. Realism and Romanticism • Realism is a literary technique popular in American literature. • Characteristics: • Character is more important than action and plot • Class is important
  • 27. Realism • Events in the novel are believable • Tone is may be comic, sarcastic, or matter-of-fact • Language is “natural”
  • 28. Realism • The novel offers Realism in the following ways: –Its use of language –Its use of social criticism where it is due –Its presentation of real problems which adolescents face in the process of achieving maturity.
  • 29. Romanticism The book also offers romanticism in its view of the innocence of childhood, its quest for truth, idealizing the past, and its emphasis on individual discovery and growth.