Abstract

This article examines the ways in which social isolation is constructed as a problem of language in J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye, and the ways in which language fails Holden Caulfield in his attempts to connect with others. I explore Holden’s anxious reliance on certain forms of communication, and how his desire to speak out is coupled with a fear of mass communication. I also examine how language as a means of communicating the self is made unstable in Salinger’s text. Finally, I look specifically at Holden’s use of the confessional form in terms of its “phoniness” in order to ascertain how much of his social isolation is imagined or self-imposed.

pdf

Additional Information

ISSN
1558-9595
Print ISSN
0004-1610
Pages
pp. 117-132
Launched on MUSE
2018-01-12
Open Access
No
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.