Carousel Scene

Raveena BirdeeEnglish Period 2
February 23, 2010 Holden’s Fall Holden has a disillusioned view of the world. He sees all adults as ‘phonies’, and all children as young and innocent. In a way, he is right. Children have a limited view of their life while adults are more knowledgeable of the world around them. But Holden takes this simple truth to a new level. He has a deep rooted fear of change. An example of this is when he states the reason why he like the museum so much. He says, “The best thing, though, in that museum was that everything stayed right where it was. Nobody’d move” (121). He goes on to say that “Certain things they should stay just the way they are. You ought to be able to stick them in one of those big glass cases and just leave them alone” (122). The outside world scares Holden because he believes it to be full of phonies, which, in a way, is true. The adult world is infinitely more complex than the sheltered world of a child. Holden knows this, and is frightened by the possibility of change, of responsibility. Of owning up to his actions. He continuously holds himself back from being exceptional. Purposefully, he flunks out of Pencey, and intentionally acts as though he is not smart. For being smart would then bring him attention, which would bring him admiration from his teachers, and possibly from his peers. With that he would have responsibility to keep being intelligent. To live up to people’s expectations of him, which would be much harder than not trying at all. Holden’s fear of change translates over to his young sister, Phoebe and children in general. He tells her he wants to be ‘the catcher in the rye’, meaning he wants to protect children from the fall to their loss of innocence. When he takes Phoebe to the carousel, he stands with the rest of the parents.