37 terms

The Catcher and the Rye

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What does Holden mean when he says that his brother D.B. is out in Hollywood being a prostitute?
Things from Hollywood are just for entertainment, so by selling out creative work for money, in Holden's mind D.B. is "being a prostitute."
Where is Holden as he narrates the story?
A mental institution somewhere near Hollywood.
Where and what is Pencey Prep?
Pencey Prep is a school in Agerstown, Pennsylvania for boys. Their goal is to "mold boys into splendid, clear-thinking, young men."
How did Holden let the fencing team down?
Holden left all the foils and equipment on the subway.
Why was Holden being kicked out of Pencey Prep?
Holden was flunking four subjects and not applying himself.
What kind of health does Holden appear to be in?
Holden is not in great health because he is a heavy smoker and "practically" got t.b.
Who is Mr. Spencer and why does Holden visit him?
Mr. Spencer is Holden's old teacher who he visits because he is recovering from a grippe and won't ever see again after winter break. Also, Mr. Spencer was the only teacher who actually believed that Holden could succeed.
What did Spencer do that particularly annoyed Holden?
Holden was annoyed by how Spencer always yelled and by how he read his essay and called it garbage.
What does Holden give us as the reason for "leaving" Elkton Hills?
Because at Elkton Hills, Holden was surrounded by phonies.
What does Holden mean when he says "I'm quite illiterate, but I read a lot?"
Holden means that even though his grammar and reading skills aren't very good, he still reads a lot of books. He reads advanced classics like Ring Laudner.
Who is Robert Ackley? Describe him.
Robert Ackley is a student living next to Holden at school. He has lousy personal hygiene and a terrible personality.
What does Ackley do that annoys Holden?
Ackley never sits down in a chair, he comes into rooms when he's not invited, he cuts his nails on the floor, he doesn't brush his teeth, etc.
Who is Stradlater? Why does Holden refer to him as a "secret slob?" What does he look like?
Stradlater is Holden's roommate. He always looks alright but is a slob in the way he gets clean, like how his razor was extremely rusty. He has a good amount of facial hair.
What point does Holden try to make about people when he talks about Stradlater and the "commas" and Ackley's description of the basketball player?
He is trying to say that people base why others are better at something than they are on technical things, like the basketball players build, instead of actual talent/skill.
Why did it make Holden nervous that Stradlater was going out with Jane Gallagher?
Holden used to date Jane, and he was worried about her because he knows that Stradlater date rapes.
Who is Allie, and why is his baseball mitt so special to Holden?
Allie Holden's brother who died recently of leukemia, so the baseball mitt is a very special memory of him.
Why did Holden's parents want to have him psychoanalyzed?
The night that Allie died, Holden broke all the windows in the garage with his fist.
What do Holden and Stradlater fight over?
Stradlater came home from his date with Jane after her curfew, and Stradlater is not pleased with the essay that Holden wrote.
Holden says that he is a "pacifist." What is that, and is he?
A pacifist is someone who tries to avoid violence. In his head, Holden thinks that he is a pacifist, but he can still be cruel and pick fights.
Why does Holden suddenly decide to visit Ackley's room?
He doesn't want to stay with Stradlater after their fight, and he also wants to show his wounds to Ackley for attention.
Where does Holden then decide to go?
Holden leaves for New York until Wednesday.
What is the final good-bye to Pencey Prep.
He yells down the corridor at the top of his lungs "Sleep tight, you morons" so that everyone probably woke up.
Why do you think Holden was crying as he left?
He got emotional because he was leaving a place although he hated, he established a life.
What does Holden mean when he says, "Mothers are all slightly insane?"
Mothers care about their kids more than anything in the world and will do anything for them, so in a way they are crazy.
What are some lies Holden tells Mrs. Morrow? Do you think he's as sorry for them as he stated?
He tells Mrs. Morrow that her son was popular, shy, and almost class president, which is the opposite of his actual personality. I think he was sorry for the lies because she acted very kind towards him.
Holden calls other people phony. In what way is he a phony?
Holden lied to the mother on the train, and when he wanted to get with the girl in the middle of the night. When he creates a life for himself just as phony as the people he complains about.
Who is Phoebe, and what is Holden's opinion of her?
Phoebe is Holden young sister, and he admires her. He thinks that's she is very smart and similar to Allie.
What evidence is there that shows us that Holden probably doesn't look as old as he says he looks?
The waiter at The Lavendar asked if he was under 21, and the girls he danced with asked how his father was doing.
What was the past relationship like between Holden and Jane?
They dated, but they cared about each other feelings and not physical things
What do Holden and the cab driver talk about?
Holden asks the cab driver where the ducks go when their lake freezes over
Why does Holden leave Ernie's?
Because he sees Lillian, an ex-girlfriend of D.B.'s whom everyone hates. She invites him to sit with her and her date, so he makes up an excuse to leave. Also, he thinks that Ernie is a "phony"
Previously Holden stated he was a "pacifist." Does his description of how he would deal with the "glove thief" support this, or is he "yellow?"
I don't think that his story supports him being a pacifist, because although he said he would be too scared to actually punch someone he said that he would still want to do it.
Does Holden have any guilt feelings about Allie? Do you feel this is abnormal in any way, or normal?
I think that he has normal guilt feelings for Allie because he was much more accomplished and successful than Holden ever was, so he wonders why Allie passes away and not him.
What made Holden cry?
Holden cries after Sunny and Maurice steal $5 from his wallet because it wasn't fair
What evidence shows us that Holden might have made a good actor?
Holden imagines a descriptive scene where Maurice shoots him in the guts and he walks all over the hotel
What is the point that Holden is trying to make about people when he elaborates about the suitcases of the nuns and of his former roommate?
Holden tries to make the point that it is difficult to be friends people in different classes because then someone is always jealous of what you have and you are never entirely comfortable with each other
How does Holden treat the nuns?
Holden treats the nuns very well and even gives them a donation that they don't ask for