Holden Caulfield

28 Jan

Jerome David (January 1, 1919 – January 27, 2010)

Today, J.D. Salinger died at the age of 91 years old from natural causes in his home at Cornish, New Hampshire. As you all know he was the author of the classic, The Catcher in the Rye which sold 250,000 copies each year. It was one of my favorite books that I was force to read in high school. But I ended up loving the novel that I actually read it and treated less than an English class requirement.

Want to know some The Catcher in the Rye fun facts? Okay,cool.

  1. When J.D. Salinger publish the novel in 1951, it was originally intended for adults, but it became popular with young readers becomes of the theme of alienation and rebellion.
  2. It has been frequently changed in the U.S. because of its use of profanity, and the portrayal of sexuality and teenage anxiety.
  3. The name of the novel came from when Holden misheard Robert Burns’ poem “Comin’ Through the Rye”. He sees that  it is his job to catch the kids who are playing around in a huge rye field on the edge of a cliff. If they are close to falling of the cliff, Holden would be “the catcher in the rye”. Which Holden sees himself as the savior to these children from the evils of adulthood.
  4. Between 1961 and 1982, it as the most censored novel in high schools and libraries in the U.S..
  5. In 1981, even though it was the most censored novel, it was the 2nd most taught book in public schools in the U.S..
  6. In 2009, Salinger successfully sued the U.S. publication of a novel to stop presenting Holden Caulfield as an  old man ( I know, how the hell did they get that confusion when the guy goes to prep school and gets kicked out in a couple of others).
  7. There is no film adaptation of this novel because many people have many different interpretation of it and the complexity of Holden’s character. But it was thought that Jerry Lewis, Marlon Brando, Jack Nicholson, Leonardo DiCaprio, Tobey Maguire, and John Cusack to play Holden but, nah. Salinger refused repeatedly.
  8. 1999, Joyce Maynard stated, “The only person who might ever have played Holden Caulfield would have been J. D. Salinger.” Well he did say, “My boyhood was very much the same as that of the boy in the book …It was a great relief telling people about it.”
  9. 1961, Salinger denied the permission from Elia Kazan to direct an adaptation titles Catcher on Broadway. But recently Salinger’s agents received bids for Catcher movie rights to Harvey Weinstein and Steven Spielberg, neither of which was even passed on to J. D. Salinger for consideration.
  10. The etymology of the name Holden Caulfield” Holden: came from Salinger’s friend Holden Bowler and some also argue that it also interprets how Holden likes to hold on to the past and childhood. Which is a sign of Holden’s mental illness of how is still mentally a child and has a hard time growing into adulthood. Caul: is a membrane that covers and protects embryos and sometimes remains on babies after birth, hence  catcher in the rye” and childlike mentality of Holden. Field, is the rye field the children were playing.
  11. It has counted 237 appearances of the word “goddam” in the novel, along with 58 of “bastard,” 31 of “Chrissake” and 6 of “fuck.”
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