How does literary anti-style and first person narration help convey meaning in The Catcher in the Rye?Please use examples and quotes

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I think that the style of first person narration, and its presence of anti- style, helps to bring out the major themes of the novel and in Holden's character.  The fact that he opens with the critique of "David Copperfield" style of narration reflects this first person narration style.  It is personal, and allows the reader ti enter into the mind of the protagonist, able to know everything that is processed in his mind and how he perceives reality.  At the same time, this anti- style helps the reader to understand that one of Holden's major traits is one that embraces anti- establishmentarian ideas.  It is through the style of narration that the reader understands Holden to be an anti- hero.  This is not the type of character who sees his story as one where social redemption becomes the driving force or who seeks to embrace a traditionally transcendent view of being in the world.  This is something that can be fully grasped through the style of narration and the content within it.  In the literary anti- style via first person narration being offered, I think that Salinger is able to bring out both thematic elements through the manner of display.

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