holden classics

In Defense of Holden Caulfield

I honestly don’t know if I’ll ever understand why exactly people hate Holden Caulfield from “The Catcher in the Rye”.

I mean, sure, you could defend your dislike with a classic gem such as, “Oh, he’s just a whiny, pretentious f***boy! He’s so boring, all he does is complain!”

But at that I’m just like

okay, wow, I’m sorry the incredibly depressed mentally ill teenager who has no true friends and is constantly being ignored by the people he tries to reach out to and is constantly being told he’s useless and a bad influence by his peers and has alluded to being sexually molested by multiple people as a little kid and has to deal with the pain and hardship of growing up in a world he can’t help but see as superficial and hypocritical and WHOSE CLASSMATE FRICKIN’ COMMITTED SUICIDE IN FRONT OF HIM isn’t a conventionally cheerful or likeable protagonist????

I don’t understand why that’s so hard for people to grasp; it just straight up BAFFLES me. I mean, people eke out all sorts of ways to like downright villains like Alex (DeLarge) or Loki or Ramsay Snow/Bolton, or antiheros like Jaime/Cersei Lannister, Sherlock Holmes, etc.

Why is it so hard to dole out a little sympathy for Holden, who, ultimately, just wants to protect children from the evils of the world—arguably one of the noblest and most heartbreakingly tender aspirations of all?

Hi my name is Holden Caulfield and I’m trying to “hold on” to childhood (that’s how I got my name) and I have black hair with streaks of grey and icy blue eyes like limpid tears and a lot of people tell me I look like Allie (AN: if u don’t know who he is get da hell out of here!). I’m not related to Jane Gallagher but I wish I was because she’s a major fucking hottie. I go to a phony school called Pencey Prep in New York (I’m seventeen). I’m a goth (in case you couldn’t tell) and I wear a red hunting hat I call “my people-shooting hat.” I was walking outside Pencey Prep. It was snowing and raining so there was no sun, which I was very happy about. A lot of phonies stared at me. I put up my middle finger at them.