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Holden Caulfield's Journey Through New York

The timeline of events during Holden's time in New York in JD Salinger's Catcher in the Rye

Hannah Johnson

on 14 November 2012

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Transcript of Holden Caulfield's Journey Through New York

Holden's Journey through New York Catcher in the Rye Pencey Prep The Carousel At the start of the novel we are
introduced to Holden. Holden stays here when he is in New York Edmont Hotel * Once at home Holden gives the pieces of the broken record to Phoebe
* Phoebe guesses he has been kicked out of school
* Here he tells her of his dream about being the Catcher in the Rye
* Holden give Phoebe his Red Hunting Hat and calls Mr. Antolini
* Holden's parents return & Holden hides then leaves for Mr. Antolini's house Caulfield Residence * Holden remembers taking Phoebe shopping here "the Christmas before last"
* He wishes for her to be with him
* We see here just how alike Holden and his kid sister are as they both got a laugh out of messing the salesman around in Bloomingdale's Christmas Shopping on Fifth Avenue * Whilst Phoebe is riding the
carousel Holden comes to the conclusion that
you cannot stop children from experiencing the corruption of the adult world they will enter
* For the first time in the novel he tells us "Boy I
felt so damn happy all of a sudden"
* This is the first time that Holden tells us he is
happy during the novel He has been kicked out of a prestigious school called Pencey Prep He is spectating the football game from the top of the hill before going to see his old teacher; Old Spencer After visiting Old Spencer, Holden returns to his Dorm He reads a book until his neighbor,
Ackley comes and disturbs him Holden finally gets Ackley to leave Holden's roommate Stradlater comes
back and borrows his coat for a date
with a girl that Holden used to know Holden and Stradlater talk for a
while but we get the impression
neither likes the other very much An argument takes place between
Stradlater and Holden over an English
composition Stradlater gets Holden
to write for him;
Holden ends up covered in blood Holden gathers all the money
he can find and decides there
is no point in him staying at
school for the last few days Holden leaves Pencey Prep
and goes to New York Holden gets on the
train to New York Whilst he is on the train
he meets the mother
of a boy he knew from
Pencey Holden lies to the
woman who we
come to know is
called Mrs Morrow;
he tells her he has left
school early as he has
to have a brain tumor
removed over the
Christmas period Holden arrives in New York He takes a cab (indirectly to the Edmont Hotel) Holden boasts to us that he is a terrific liar Holden uses his red hunting hat
as a form of protection and self-alienation This becomes a recurring theme throughout the novel as Holden uses his hat to make himself feel less alone whilst he is in New York Once in New York Holden tries to call someone;
he is feeling lonely there are many people he thinks about calling His sister; Phoebe His brother; DB Jane Gallagher Sally Hayes Carl Luce but he doesn't call anyone On the way Holden starts to talk to the cab driver about the ducks in the lagoon in central park; this topic has been bothering him for quite a while Holden wants to know who cares for the ducks
in the winter when the lagoon freezes over * Home to the Lavender Room In the Lavender Room we first see how Holden really Interacts with Women; another key part of the novel * Holden dances with a couple of girls as he thinks they are attractive but they are more interested in looking for celebrities * He tries to act older than he is buy ordering alcohol from the waiter this is representative of how he does not want to the leave the innocence of childhood but wants to do things that adults do; Holden is struggling with the concept that he is 16 and needs to grow up Holden leaves the Lavender Room & starts to think about Jane Gallagher again it now becomes apparent that Holden has quite strong feelings towards her Holden gets another cab and goes to another bar the bar is called Ernies;
after the piano player that plays there Holden does not like Ernie as he believes him to be a phony Holden tries to communicate with this cab driver about the ducks in the lagoon but with even less luck than before whilst at Ernies, Holden sees a girl who was friendly with his brother, DB, this makes him feel uncomfortable as there is a guy with this girl Holden spends another couple of days in this cycle of depression He visits many other bars and clubs, he even meets with an old friend;
Carl Luce "Old Luce" offers advice on the level with which Holden is more familiar with; Carl is only slightly older than Holden which mean Holden can relate to what he is saying about certain topics. Carl Luce was Holden's student adviser at the Whooton School; Holden feels able to confide in him Carl Luce Holden also wants to talk to Carl about Sex;
a topic that seems to be troubling Holden the most Through Carl Luce we learn how lonely Holden really is * Holden becomes an annoying child during their conversation and pesters Carl about sex, which is quite a childish topic * Carl tells Holden he is being childish which seems to distance the two and their relationship * Carl gives Holden advice that he should speak with a psychoanalyst about his many problems * Through Carl we see a change in Holden's general attitude towards his situation * The thought regarding Carl's sexuality seems to bug Holden quite a lot; the theme of homosexuality plays on Holden's mind a lot Carl allows us, the reader, to see more of Holden
and who he really is rather than the persona
we are exposed to throughout the novel Whilst talking with Carl Luce, Holden gets very drunk and calls Sally Hayes They talk for a few minutes but Sally
is unimpressed by Holden's childish acts Holden walks to Central Park where he walks to the lagoon where he hopes to find the ducks He nearly falls into the lagoon as he is
so drunk he cannot stand upright Here he also drops the record "Little Shirley Beans"
which he bought for his sister Phoebe;
it breaks into many pieces Holden decide to return to his familie's apartment and see Phoebe Holden wants to catch every young child
who is going to fall off the cliff at the
edge of the Rye Field This symbolizes how he wants to protect children from the corrupt world of adults The idea comes from a misinterpretation of a Robert Burns poem he heard being sung by a young child Phoebe corrects him about this
but it does not prevent him
from thinking this is what he
will do in life This dream however soon fades when Holden realises that it is not possible to protect people from adulthood forever At Mr. Antolini's House Holden has a long conversation over his school work and how he is going to apply himself in the future Mr. Antolini Holden falls asleep at the Antolini residence but awakes to Mr. Antolini patting him on the head Like many characters in the novel, he drinks heavily. Holden’s former English teacher
at the Elkton Hills School. Mr. Antolini now teaches at New York University. He is young, clever, sympathetic,
and likable, and Holden respects him. Holden sometimes finds him a bit too clever,
but he looks to him for guidance. Holden leaves the Antolini residence confused
and shaken by what has just occurred. It is only 5am Holden goes to Grand Central to get his bags Here he sleeps a little but not much as
he is disturbed by passers by and early
morning commuters Holden convinces himself that his hormones are out of balance and that he has cancer Here we see how desperate Holden's situation is. He starts to panic about whether he is going to die and decides to go for a walk to take his mind off everything that has happened in the past 12 hours Holden knows that he has to eat something however the thought of eating a doughnut makes him feel ill so he just drinks a coffee This reflects just how lonely Holden is feeling at a time of year when family is so important to many people He starts to call out to his brother Allie to make sure he got to the other side OK. Holden says "Allie, please don't let me disappear" This act shows how much his younger brother's death has affected him even though he doesn't want to admit it to anyone Holden makes the radical decision to go away alone and start a new life afresh somewhere where no one knew him or his story Holden's imagination goes wild and he decided he will pretend to be a deaf mute to make life easier and no one will bother him and he will get married to a deaf mute girl and they will have children together * Holden really starts to become quite paranoid that he will not even make it to the other side of the road when crosses the street Holden goes to Phoebe's school (his old school) and sends her a note telling of his plan Dear Phoebe,
I can't wait around till Wednesday any more so I will probably
hitch hike out west this afternoon. meet me at the Museum of
art near the door at quarter past 12 if you can and I will give you your Christmas dough back. I didn't spend much.
Holden Whilst at school Holden sees the words "fuck you" written on the wall "it drove me damn near crazy" This quote shows that even though Holden uses these phrases all of time that fact they are written in a school really upsets him as he feels that young children, like Phoebe should not be exposed to these kinds of obscenities Holden takes it upon himself to try and remove the words from the wall on the 2 occasions he sees them which reflects his idea of being the catcher in the rye and preventing the adult world corrupting the innocence of childhood Holden leaves the school unsure of whether his note made it to his sister showing his lack of trust in the adult world He thinks about giving Jane Gallagher a call but decides not to. Here we see his fear to communicate with people stops him from talking to others about his problems which is the cause for his spiral out of control Holden doesn't communicate with anyone in a particularly successful way.
His encounters with people who he may had started any sort of relationship with are ruined by his prejudging ways and the fact he cannot explain his in depth point of view about life to anyone without being embarrassed by his thoughts. Many themes such as sex, love, growing up etc. all trouble Holden throughout the novel but he never explains these problems to people so he can have help solving them Holden shows some young boys to where the mummies are found in the museum of art and he sees yet another "fuck you" written here as well This depresses him even further as his views of the adult world and the corruption he faces when he finally gets there are all becoming true and he sees that everything is not as it seems and that childhood protects you from so much and Holden wants it to remain like that forever Holden thinks about how there is nowhere in life where you can be peaceful as everywhere you turn there is something there bringing you down Holden decides that even when he dies someone will write on his tombstone:

Holden Caulfield yyyy-yyyy "Fuck You" Phoebe finally turns up but has a large suitcase from Holden's time at the Whooton school with her She demands to go with him wherever he is going Holden refuses to let her go with him as he himself doesn't even know what is going to happen and he wants Phoebe to stay in New York, finish school and do well - he wants her to have a good future and not mess it up like he has his Holden convinces Phoebe that he was
kidding and that he isn't going away
anywhere They walk and end up at the carousel The Ending * After the carousel we are with Holden in a sort of rest home
* Holden doesn't tell us what happened after the carousel but we get the idea he went home, got very ill and had to "come out here & take it easy"
* He talks about a psychoanalyst (Carl Luce said he should speak to one) and how he is going back to school (Mr Antolini told him to do this)
* He talks about his brother DB in a more positive way - his family have obviously supported him
* Holden tells us about how he misses everyone showing that even though he didn't have strong relationships with anyone, he had something as he misses them all
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