Is Holden Caulfield a good "actor" when he's around people?

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Although Holden can put on a good performance when the pressure is on, he is a better 'spectator' than 'actor.' Or perhaps one should say 'observer.' Holden notices things about people he really shouldn't, such as the dean picking his nose in a moment of inattention. His comments are sardonic...

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Although Holden can put on a good performance when the pressure is on, he is a better 'spectator' than 'actor.' Or perhaps one should say 'observer.' Holden notices things about people he really shouldn't, such as the dean picking his nose in a moment of inattention. His comments are sardonic and cynical, but he lacks the same critical intelligence when it comes to observing himself.

Holden is a bit lost in life, stuck in neutral while all around him the race is still on. He is more of a spectator, too, in that he has not got the motivation to actively be a part of the academic grindstone and 'get the show on the road,' nor does he have the courage to drop out of the scene altogether. He is the in-between guy with existence held in suspension, so to speak, until circomstances force him to assume his failure and to find another recourse of action.

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