Where Do the Ducks Go in the Winter?

Oh my god, I love Catcher in the Rye. Seriously. Love it. Every time.

I tried to explain to my students the other day why I loved it. They haven’t read it, so they were confused. “Is it about baseball?” they asked. No, no. It’s not about baseball. And, if it was, what would make you think that I would love a book about baseball? “Is it a feminist book?” No, it’s not. In fact, Holden Caulfield isn’t even a particularly good person let alone someone who champions women’s rights.

I can’t even really explain it. There is just something honest about it. Holden’s inner narrative doesn’t try to pretend to be anything other than who he is, even if his outer self shows us differently. He just desperately wants to connect with someone. So desperately, in fact, that he calls upon many, many people as he wanders through New York, from a prostitute to a former teacher to his little sister Phoebe.

I see Holden in my students; I see him in myself. I see him in the most deeply troubled people who have graced my past, and in the people who would have you think they were extremely happy. Holden – self centered, whiney, desperate, lost, finding joy in small things, working slowly through his issues, working slowly through life – is all of us.

Originally posted on The Samsanator Tumblr

Featured Image Credit: condour

Leave a Reply