"If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you'll probably want to know is where I was born, an what my lousy childhood was like, and how my parents were occupied and all before they had me, and all that David Copperfield kind of crap, but I don't feel like going into it, if you want to know the truth.”
"Game, my ass. . .If you get on the side where all the hot-shots are, then it's a game, all right--I'll admit that. But if you get on the other side, where there aren't any hot-shots, then what's a game about it? Nothing. No game.”
DEAR MR. SPENCER [he read out loud]. That is all I know about the Egyptians. I can't seem to get very interested in them although your lectures are very interesting. It is all right with me if you flunk me though as I am flunking everything else except English anyway.
Respectfully yours, HOLDEN CAULFIELD.
"Listen, what the hell was the fight about?"
I didn't answer him. All I did was, I got up and went over and looked out the window. I felt so lonesome, all of a sudden. I almost wished I was dead.
Caulfield's novel is a classic of American literature. That its subject matter involves the sense of alienation common to teenagers, especially those who don't fit easily into a ready-made clique and for whom the looming specter of adulthood is a depressing thought, has rightfully made it a staple of high school education. It resonates with those for whom the high school years are a melancholy time.
Are there any major moments in this book that show any of these themes?