Chapter 1 Questions and Answers

Study Questions
1. Who is Holden Caulfield?

2. Who is D.B., and why is Holden somewhat contemptuous of him?

3. What is the reality of Pencey Prep in contrast to the advertisements, as seen by Holden?

4. Why does Holden watch the game from the hill?

5. Who is Selma Thurmer, and why did Holden like her?

6. Who is Mr. Spencer, and why was Holden going to visit him?

7. Why was Holden trying to “feel” some kind of good-bye?

8. What does Holden think about the other students who attend Pencey?

9. How popular was the sport of polo at Pencey Prep?

10. Does Holden blame others for his flunking out of school?

Answers
1. Holden Caulfield is the narrator of the story. He has just been asked to leave Pencey Prep for failing four subjects. He is telling the story from California, where he is recuperating from being run-down.

2. D.B. is Holden’s older brother, who is a writer. Holden thinks he has prostituted himself because he is in Hollywood writing scripts for movies rather than writing short stories.

3. Holden feels that Pencey has high academic standards, but he is skeptical about its claim to mold boys into “splendid, clear-thinking young men.” He thinks that those boys who were splendid and clear thinkers were probably such before they enrolled.

4. He was reluctant...

(The entire section is 421 words.)