Show MoreHolden's Perception of Others in Catcher in the Rye
J.D. Salinger's novel Catcher in the Rye revolves around Holden's encounters with other people. He divides all people into two different categories, the "phonies" and the authentics. Holden refers to a "phony" as someone who discriminates against others, is a hypocrite, or has manifestations of conformity. A person's age, gender, and occupation, play a key role in how Holden interacts with them.
Holden shows a particular liking towards children over adults. He values the innocence and authenticity of children and he tries to protect them from the phoniness and evil of the world. When he goes back to his old school at the end of the novel to give a note to Phoebe, he…show more content…
Holden later makes the comment, "If you want to know the truth, I am a virgin. I really am. I have had quite a lot of opportunities to lose my virginity but I've never gotten around to it yet. Something always happens. For instance, you're at a girl's house and her parents come home at the wrong time or you're afraid they will..." (92). Holden says he is a virgin but is quick to make up excuses as if ashamed. He shows his maturity when he says, "I can never get really sexy, I mean really sexy, with a girl I don't like a lot. I mean I really have to like her a lot. If I don't, I sort of lose my goddamn desire for her and all" (148). Holden is never uncomfortable or nervous with those of the opposite sex, but respects them. But, influenced by society, he views this respect he has as unnatural.
The ways Holden acts around or reacts to the various members of his family give the reader a direct view of Holden's philosophy surrounding each member. We can infer that he is not close to his family just from the opening line, "If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you'll probably want to know is where I was born, and what my lousy childhood was like, and how my parents were occupied and all before they had me, and all that David Copperfield kind of crap, but I don't feel like going into it, if you want to know the truth" (1). Holden begins to refer to his parents as distant and generalizes both his father and mother frequently throughout
Perception of Others Essay
844 Words4 Pages
Perception of Others
There is no second chance for a first impression. Perception has never been random, since the beginning of time it has been human nature to judge others before really getting a chance to know them. People immediately cast others into stereotypes in every situation: they form a schema, or an organized set of thoughts about something containing properties and uses. These schemas effect the way people carry themselves around others. Schemas are usually formed with in eight seconds of getting the initial impression of a person. This by psychologists is know as the ?eight-second rule,? where people have been proven to form hypothesizes about others with in eight seconds of meeting or seeing an individual for the…show more content…
seems to be very ?uncool? to say the least. His oversized plaid jacket, tight laced large sneakers, and tight jeans combining with his out of control curly hair and spectacles allow myself to automatically place ?the guy behind me? in a stereotype of nerds. The way he crosses his legs also leads me to believe he is one of those that probably enjoy computers and Dungeons & Dragons, yet for all I know this guy could be the best basketball player at Catawba. By his appearance I have already made assumptions about his lifestyle, or formed something referred to as Functional Association. After realizing the extent of judgement I cast on others, I began to contemplate if others would place me in certain stereotypes if I didn?t appear as I do; so, I decided to form my own experiment.
I decided to make myself salient, or stand out, to better see my impressions on people. I began a three-day experiment where I would wear my not-so attractive glasses, a hooded sweatshirt, and Velcro shoes from Wal-Mart to dress like one would call a ?bum.? Of my many experiences of the weekend, three stood out from all the rest: my attendance at the soccer game, my trip to the Bar Charlotte nightclub, and being introduced to new friends.
No girl in their right mind would dance with a guy with big ugly glasses. For we all know they have already formed something called an illusory correlation, or a memory of a negative or distasteful person or instance. Here I began to look at not