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Where is Holden Caullfield as he narrates the story in The Catcher in the Rye?

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mariedinh | (Level 1) Honors

Posted June 30, 2012 at 4:05 PM via web

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Where is Holden Caullfield as he narrates the story in The Catcher in the Rye?

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Kristen Lentz | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted June 30, 2012 at 4:43 PM (Answer #1)

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Holden Caullfield narrates his story from a mental institution somewhere in California near Hollywood.  He is taking a much needed "rest" from his former life of boarding schools and expulsion. 

The sequence of events that Holden narrates from his room at the mental institution reveal much about why Holden is there in the first place:  he's depressed, has violent urges, contemplates suicide, and even has physical side effects from his depression like nausea and headaches.  Salinger includes details, like Holden's mention of his psychoanalyst, to suggest that Holden's mental breakdown is genuine and not 'phony.'

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atyourservice | Student, Grade 10 | (Level 3) Valedictorian

Posted September 29, 2014 at 12:39 AM (Answer #2)

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Holden is in a "Rest home" as he tells his story. His location can be interpreted in many different ways because for all we know he could be at a psychologist. One student in my AP class mentioned a mental institution but my teacher disagreed and told us just because it was a closed space didnt mean he was in a mental institution.

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