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Munyan, L- Museum of Natural History/Innocence-4

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Neil Sullivan

on 23 May 2014

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Transcript of Munyan, L- Museum of Natural History/Innocence-4

"The best thing, though, in that museum was that everything always stayed right where it was. Nobody'd move. You could go there a hundred thousand times, and that Eskimo would still be just finished catching those two fish, the birds would still be on their way south, the deers would still be drinking out of that water hole […]. Nobody'd be different. The only thing that would be different would be you" (pg. 121).
Innocence in the Museum of Natural History
Holden loves the museum because, no matter what, it never changes.
The beings are stuck in time, frozen doing relatively innocent things.
Holden wishes he would never grow up and turn into an adult or a "phony".
"Certain things... should stay the way they are. You ought to be able to stick them in one of those big glass cases and just leave them alone. I know that's impossible, but it's too bad anyway"
(pg 122).
Museum is a "protector of the innocent".
He wishes he could be the the same, but, at the same time, he realizes that he cannot.
"I kept walking and walking, and I kept thinking about old Phoebe going to that museum on Saturdays the way I used to. I thought how she'd see the same stuff I used to see, and how
be different every time she saw it..." (pg. 122).
"Certain things... should stay the way they are. You ought to be able to stick them in one of those big glass cases and just leave them alone" (pg. 122).
Realization of lost innocence
Phoebe will grow up and become experienced with the world, thereby losing some of her childlike innocence.
Holden wishes he could protect her innocence and keep her a child forever, but he can't.
People grow older.
There are multiple things that symbolize innocence in the text:
Museum of Natural History
Ducks in Central Park
The impact:
Makes the tone a bit more wistful
Helps reader connect with Holden
Shows what goes on inside a young adult's mind as they grow
Manifestation and Impact of Innocence in the Text
To show the conflicts within teenage minds
Show how innocence fades with time

Museum helps accomplish the purpose by:
Providing something that doesn't change with age
Salinger's Purpose
Full transcript