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What does Holden think of the three women he meets in the Lavender Room?

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danidallas | eNotes Newbie

Posted May 20, 2013 at 1:00 AM via web

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What does Holden think of the three women he meets in the Lavender Room?

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rrteacher | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted May 20, 2013 at 1:47 AM (Answer #1)

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The best way to describe his thoughts about the three girls he meets is "contempt." Holden claims that he is not all that interested in two of the girls, who he describes as "pretty ugly." Only one, a blonde woman, is "sort of cute." After the blonde woman dances with him, and tells him how impressed she was by seeing the actor Peter Lorre in person, he believes that she is "really a moron," though he is obviously attracted to her, and impressed by her dancing. He is highly dismissive of the intellectual abilities of the women, who he describes as "depressing." It is clear, though, that he primarily resents the fact that he, because of his age, seems to be a joke to them. This is a crucial tension in this chapter: Holden views the women and others in the bar as superficial and shallow, yet he tries to impress them by acting, in many ways, like the other bar patrons are acting.

Source: J.D Salinger, The Catcher in the Rye (New York: Bantam Books, 1965).

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