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Holden Caulfield Quotes

Batul Nafisa Baxamusa Feb 28, 2020
The following post on 'The Catcher in the Rye' will try to cover some interesting words said by the controversial fictional character Holden Caulfield.
"The Catcher in the Rye" was a novel written by J. D. Salinger in 1951. This novel was written for adults but took the adolescent world by storm due to its colors related to sexuality, angst, rebellion, and other similar feelings of a teenager. This was listed as one of the best novels of the 20th century and became the most controversial book of its time.

Who is Holden Caulfield?

Holden Caulfield is the protagonist and anti-hero of the book "The Catcher in the Rye". He is just 16 years old when he runs away from his preparatory school, and spends a few days in New York. He does not let anyone know of his whereabouts and spends his days drunk. He is an optimist and tries to find the meaning in life.
He does come across as an immature and naive teenager in some parts of the book, as he thinks of himself as a perpetual failure. He harbors confusion related to alcoholism, suicide and yet manages to hang on to his ideals. He may have some psychological problems as he shows non-conformist behavior and self-destructiveness.

The Words of Holden Caulfield

If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you'll probably want to know is where I was born and what my lousy childhood was like, and how my parents were occupied and all before they had me, and all that David Copperfield kind of crap, but I don't feel like going into it, if you want to know the truth. - Chapter 1, opening words of book
What I was really hanging around for, I was trying to feel some kind of a good-by. I mean I've left schools and places I didn't even know I was leaving them. I hate that. I don't care if it's a sad good-by or a bad good-by, but when I leave a place I like to know I'm leaving it. If you don't, you feel even worse. - Chapter 1
People never notice anything. - Chapter 2

I'm the most terrific liar you ever saw in your life. It's awful. If I'm on my way to the store to buy a magazine, even, and somebody asks me where I'm going, I'm liable to say I'm going to the opera. It's terrible.
- Chapter 3
What really knocks me out is a book that, when you're all done reading it, you wish the author that wrote it was a terrific friend of yours and you could call him up on the phone whenever you felt like it. That doesn't happen much, though. - Chapter 3
When I really worry about something, I don't just fool around. I even have to go to the bathroom when I worry about something. Only, I don't go. I'm too worried to go. I don't want to interrupt my worrying to go. - Chapter 6

Holden Caulfield's Take on Phonies

Almost every time somebody gives me a present, it ends up making me sad. - Chapter 7

Girls. You never know what they're going to think. - Chapter 18
The thing is, it's really hard to be roommates with people if your suitcases are much better than theirs - if yours are really good ones and theirs aren't. You think if they're intelligent and all, the other person, and have a good sense of humor, that they don't give a damn whose suitcases are better, but they do. They really do.  - Chapter 15

Holden Caulfield and Depression

It was that kind of a crazy afternoon, terrifically cold, and no sun out or anything, and you felt like you were disappearing every time you crossed a road. - Chapter 1
There isn't any nightclub in the world you can sit in for a long time unless you can at least buy some liquor and get drunk. Or unless you're with some girl that really knocks you out. - Chapter 13

I felt so depressed, you can't even imagine. What I did, I started talking, sort of out loud to Allie. I do that sometimes when I get very depressed. - Chapter 13
Goddam money. It always ends up making you blue as hell. - Chapter 15

...if they get a brand-new car already they start thinking about trading it in for one that's even newer. I don't even like old cars. I mean they don't even interest me. I'd rather have a goddamn horse. A horse is at least human, for God's sake.
- Chapter 17
...I have to catch everybody if they start to go over the cliff - I mean if they're running and they don't look where they're going I have to come out from somewhere and catch them. That's all I do all day. I'd just be the catcher in the rye and all. I know it's crazy, but that's the only thing I'd really like to be. - Chapter 22

Holden Caulfield and the Display of Innocence

People never believe you. - Chapter 5

Most guys at Pencey just talked about having sexual intercourse ... with girls all the time - like Ackley, for instance - but old Stradlater really did it. I was personally acquainted with at least two girls he gave the time to. That's the truth.
- Chapter 7
Certain things they should stay the way they are. You ... ought to be able to stick them in one of those big glass cases and just leave them alone. I know that's impossible, but it's too bad anyway. - Chapter 16

If a girl looks swell when she meets you, who gives a damn if she's late? Nobody. - Chapter 17
I went down by a different staircase, and I saw ... another "Fuck you" on the wall. I tried to rub it off with my hand again, but this one was scratched on, with a knife ..... It wouldn't come off. It's hopeless, anyway. If you had a million years to do it in, you couldn't rub out even half the "Fuck you" signs in the world. It's impossible. - Chapter 25

Holden Caulfield's View about Death

I felt like jumping out the window. I probably would've, too, if I'd been sure somebody'd cover me up as soon as I landed. I didn't want a bunch of stupid rubbernecks looking at me when I was all gory. - Chapter 14
Anyway, I'm sort of glad they've got the atomic bomb invented. If there's ever another war, I'm going to sit right the hell on top of it. I'll volunteer for it, I swear to God I will. - Chapter 18
Boy, when you're dead, they really fix you up. I hope to hell when I do die somebody has sense enough to just dump me in the river or something. Anything except sticking me in a goddamn cemetery. People coming and putting a bunch of flowers on your stomach on Sunday, and all that crap. Who wants flowers when you're dead? Nobody. - Chapter 20
All the visitors could get in their cars and turn on their radios and all and then go someplace nice for dinner - everybody except Allie. I couldn't stand it. I know it's only his body and all that's in the cemetery, and his soul's in Heaven and all that crap, but I couldn't stand it anyway. I just wished he wasn't there. - Chapter 20
These quotes mirror the thoughts of a lot of young teenage minds and the confusion about life and values that plague them. This best-selling book of all time is worth a read at least once. I hope you have enjoyed the quotes of Holden Caulfield, who is by far one of the most famous and controversial fictional American protagonists and anti-heroes.