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In chapter 18, why didn't Jane respond to Holden's call and how can I act this out like...

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mohammadruman... | Student, Grade 10 | eNotes Newbie

Posted November 8, 2009 at 5:29 PM via web

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In chapter 18, why didn't Jane respond to Holden's call and how can I act this out like a role play which has to be about 5 minutes?

Holden clearly has feelings for Jane because he tried to call her a couple of times when he had nothing to do. He thought about her and when she did't answer, it led him thinking about why girls are so complex.

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ask996 | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Senior Educator

Posted November 8, 2009 at 9:09 PM (Answer #1)

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Whenever Holden seems to be at loose ends Holden calls on friends from the past whether it be former teachers or former classmates. These contacts are perhaps made when Holden is closest to realizing that he is spiraling out of control, or perhaps they are his attempts to anchor himself in reality. So we don't know why Jane doesn't answer Holden in chapter 18. Maybe she's not home, or maybe she simply realizes he represents too much drama. After all the last time Holden exhibits his irrationality with Sally at the skating rink, and he while he does not admit to his irrationality with Jane, he does give us an example of it when he talks about the time he saw her with a boy at a dance. Holden thought the boywas a show-off, but Jane argued that the boy had an inferiority complex. Clearly this same assessment could be applied to Holden, and whenever the truth hits too close to home, Holden flies off the handle, so there is no doubt that this was not an amicable discussion. Jane would be well aware of Holden's character, and she perhaps has chosen walking away and ignoring him is prudent.

You could show Holden's irrationality by acting out the phone call with lots of agitated behavior and ramblings as he waits for her to answer (which she  doesn't). Then he could have an outburst and throw slam the phone down before walking away with more irrational mumbling.

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