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What is the significance of the taxi cabs?

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gcoraci | eNotes Newbie

Posted May 31, 2007 at 6:18 AM via web

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What is the significance of the taxi cabs?

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janeyb | (Level 2) Associate Educator

Posted June 1, 2007 at 12:59 AM (Answer #1)

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when he arrives in the city, he asks the cab driver if he knows where the ducks in Central Park go when the lagoon freezes over. It is something Holden has been wondering about ever since his preparations to leave Pencey. The driver's curt reply is a reminder that not everyone shares Holden's values. When Holden checks into a hotel, he is surrounded by prostitutes, perverts and heavy drinkers, all of which contrast with the serenity of the park. Later, Holden returns to the subject of the ducks with another cab driver. It seems that if he could get an answer to this question, his mind would be at ease, knowing the ducks are safe. It is a childish desire, in a way, but it also offers an important insight into Holden's psyche. Therefore, the Taxi driver's represent the rest of society, they are curt and dismissive of Holden and he feels alienated.

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