reflectia wrote:I personally disliked Catcher, although I suppose I can see why people who might sympathize with Holden as an off-the-wall character (in either sense of the the term).
What I don't understand is how some people see Holden as attractive. Apparently Holden made "Top 10 Characters We'd Like To Date" or something like that on a blog that I have lost the link for. I was confused. For me, at least, there's a difference between enjoying the writing style, enjoying the plot, and sympathizing with the main characters. I just can't see where the physical/emotional appeal of Holden is. Certainly not the emotional appeal, as he's unable to form any emotional attachment whatsoever to anyone but his siblings.
Someone please enlighten me.
[I don't consider this "enlightening" you, for I respect your opinion, and have no intentions in making you change it.
This is just what I think.]
I would like to draw a parallel between the situation in the book and this one, people don't understand/sympathize/like Holden.
Everyone who has read the book, knows the situation, Holden talking to his little sister* and, when trying to negate her statement that "He doesn't like anything", thinks of what he really likes : and then he remembers the boy who rather died then take back what he said; but knows that he can not explain that to her.
See, look it like this : his sister is a normal child, without doubts Holden has. She's functioning well in family, in school, in life, generally. Obviously, Holden does not. Why? His sister has never been brought into a situation to question why should she do these things she does. Holden, on the other hand, is emotionally unstable, he hardly stood the loss of one brother, the other one being "a prostitute"** He's afraid, he's alone, he does not know how to fit in, and all the values of the adult world, he considers phony : so, in the act that boy did "not taking his word back" if it costs him his life, he finds honor, a value unknown to most (phony) people. I'm not going to explain why is it important to stick to your words, most people nowadays don't do that (that's the phoniness of our world) because, just like Holden can not explain, neither can I. You can either agree or disagree with the rightfulness of the boy's act: but that doesn't mean that you are right one or the other way : it's just the system of values you have.
So, in a way, Holden and I share the same "system of values" in which, to stick to the things you say is something you respect; and writing movie-scripts (when you could write things of artistic and not consumer value) isn't.
*he has feelings for other people too : the girl (Jane? is that her name?)
** meaning he wrote movie scripts in Hollywood, thus selling his writing talent for money : which Holden finds dishonorable.