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Mark Philips Revisits Holden Caulfield

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Essay title: Mark Philips Revisits Holden Caulfield

Mark Philips revisits Holden Caulfield in J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye. This novel results in inspiring him to live his life by its teachings, starting off the same age as the protagonist and ending roughly thirty years of age in the same mind track addressing both J.D. Salinger’s novel and Holden to life. Mark Philips ends with a deep passion towards the book and its character Holden Caulfield.

Mark views Holden as a hero, a person who understands the universe and argues society’s faults. He states “… a reader of J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye learn immediately that its narrator is at war with “crap”, seek truth and speaks Americanese that’s vibrant with sincerity.” Making direct comparisons through events, Mark relates his life to Holden’s, such as his time as an “alienated freshman” in college and the football games he failed to attend because of the way the student body was supposed to behave. He proves that Holden is not insane, but a regular teenager filled with angst throughout the book acknowledging that “… the book is a simplistic tale of a boy’s unhappiness over biological fact: teenagers must grow to adult hood…” He feels that Holden’s character completes him in a way that he does not feel alone; that only he understands. Holden’s brutal honesty and witty remarks touch Mark as he implies, “…I was not alone. Even if my fellow sufferer was fictional …”. Society fears sincerity, thus the excuse of the banning on Holden’s characterization. As Mark explains in context such as, “… Because our nation was founded with such idealistic optimism…” this proves that conformists are deadly because they murder the innocence of a person they try to protect.

The novel comes about as a bible to Mark preaching and giving him directions from the only man who “understands” society avoiding the adult teachings. Upon the third time rereading the novel, Mark was straightening his bookshelf and without thinking about it, he picks up the book. From the first sentence of the novel, as Mark describes it, it charmed him anew for the third time in rereading it with its gentle rebelliousness. The novel is entrenched as an American Classic to which Mark says that neither can critics ignore Salinger’s novel on Holden and its worth and appeal to all. The Catcher in the Rye was banned ironically for the protection of the youth’s innocence; Mark reinstates that most books are banned for their truthfulness. In high school, the book served as a

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