Why is Holden Caulfield so contemptuous of D.B. in The Catcher in the Rye?

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parkerlee | Teacher | (Level 2) Educator

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Holden considers that his older brother has sold himself out by sacrificing his artistic talent to acquire bourgeois status and a comfortable life. The reader cannot know, though, if this is really true or not since Holden is not exactly a reliable narrator. To him most everybody is "phony" and it seems as if Holden is subconsciously jealous of the success he himself has not attained. Since success is beyond his reach (or at least for the time being), he give it and most everybody associated with it "the sour grapes treatment."

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