Where does Holden then decide to go? (Chapter 7)

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pirateteacher's profile pic

pirateteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Associate Educator

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In chapter 7, Holden decides to go back to his school, Pencey Prep.  He decides he doesn't want to wait for Wednesday so that he will not get home before his parents get the Headmaster's letter of expulsion.  Earlier in the novel, when he learned that he would be expelled, Holden expressed no sorrow about leaving the school, but now, he feels sadness. He feels as though he has hurt his mother and been left by his friends.  He feels abandoned and alone as he walks out of the dorm.


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poetrymfa | College Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

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In the beginning of The Catcher in the Rye, we learn that Holden is being expelled from his fancy boarding school for failing multiple subjects and being an irresponsible student.

In Chapter Seven, Holden returns to his dormitory so that he can pack up his things and slip out early. He decides on a big plan: he will go book an inexpensive hotel room in New York City where he can "take it easy" and get "rested up" until Wednesday. Once Wednesday comes, he will return to his parents' house; by this time, his parents should have received Headmaster Thurmer's letter of expulsion and would have had time to think it over. This will allow Holden to miss out on his mother's hysterical behavior, since "[s]he's not too bad after she gets something thoroughly digested." Holden feels that his "nerves were shot" and that he needed a vacation. He packs, counts out his money, and exits the building, screaming, "Sleep tight, ya morons!"

atyourservice's profile pic

atyourservice | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 3) Valedictorian

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Holden goes back to his school and decides he is going to leave before wednesday. He packs his bags and yells his last goodbye to Pencey Prep before leaving. His leave will lead to his journey in new york city, where he encounters the world around him.

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