.”.. How do you know what you ” re going to do till you do it? The answer is, you don’t.” The Catcher in the Rye, by J. D. Salinger is the story of a teenage boy, told through his own view.
Holden Caulfield tells of the previous year in his life. This quote from page 213 summarizes his feelings about mostly everything. Besides Holden’s constant daydreaming, he lived in the moment, doing whatever he felt like. He is a very intelligent young man, capable of great achievement, but Holden unfortunately suffers from a depression. Through out the novel, Holden incessantly mentions how things depress him.
Everything from the way people act, to how things are in nature, bring him down. Holden’s behavior revolves around his depression. He does not try to pass his classes in school, as well as he does not try to be overly social. He hates the way that people can be so phony, yet he himself can also be called one. Holden tries to put up a front to hide his depression. He acts the way that he thinks people want him to act.
Holden enjoys ‘shooting the bull’ with people. This is because it is the only way that he can have a conversation with someone without revealing his depression. In the final chapter of The Catcher in the Rye, Holden does not tell the reader the rest of his story after the rainy day with his sister, Phoebe. However, it is revealed that he ‘got sick’ after he went home. There are many clues that point to what happened. As a result of his depression, it is possible that Holden could have made a suicide attempt after returning home.
... become dependent on machines. If a major depression people wouldn't know how to act or survive. I think the results would be ... disgust almost about the today's lifestyle when the people of the depression had it awful; yet, they almost never complained and ... even the last depression. Hard work and the ability to be self-reliant is almost an extinct breed of people which should ...
He says, “A lot of people, especially this one psychoanalyst guy they have here, keeps asking me if I’m going to apply myself when I go back to school in September” (213) The part ‘guy they have here’ and the previous statement, “I’m supposed to go next fall after I get out of here” implies the possibility that he has been placed in an institution or hospital of some sort. Although Holden would not agree, it is beneficial that he told his story. One part of recovery is to be able to speak about what has happened. He says he regrets telling so many people, but I don’t think he regrets telling it altogether. Holden says.
“I don’t know what to think about it. I’m sorry I told so many people about it. All I know is, I sort of miss everybody I told about… Don’t ever tell anybody anything.
If you do, you start missing everybody.” (214) When Holden says this, I believe that in some way he regrets the way he treated his past acquaintances. Holden appears to be getting the help that is needed and that he is on the road to recovery. However, he still seems resistant to the idea of going back to school, and he seems to still have an attitude about certain people and things.