A Psychoanalytical Analysis of Holden Caulfield
Holden Caulfield is a 17-year-old boy who has been temporarily sent to Happy Farms (mental institution) to observe his behavior and recover from some nervous breakdown. Holden himself is the narrator and he tells the readers his story while he is at the Happy Farms. He narrates the crazy things that happened to him one week before being sent to this place and also tells us the reason why he is at the Happy Farm right now. He is unnecessary urge to lie to avoid confrontation defeats manhood. Holden Caulfield should not be release in this place temporarily due to his psychological problems that revealed through his extreme cynicism, depressive thoughts, and delusional fantasies. Holden Caulfield continues is trying to hide his true identity. He does not want people to know who he really is or that he was kicked out of his high school because of his academic failure. He always uses fake names and tries to speak in a tone to persuade someone to think a certain way.
Holden says it is something that seems to be part of himself, Holden simply does it without much worrying: “I’m the most terrific liar you ever saw in your life” (Chapter 3, p.19). No matter what place or the circumstance, He is always lying when somebody ask him especially his life. In one particular moment, when he is inside a train, an older woman starts talking to him and pretends to be another person. He also tells the old woman that he is sick: “ I have to have this operation, … It isn’t very serious. I have this tiny little tumor on the brain” (Chapter 8, p.65). Holden simply cannot avoid it: he lies all the time. Even during the ordinary conversations, Holden would still lie. He lies about his family, either his age, or even when he is trying to talk people around him.
Holden is only 17-year-old when he starts smoking and drinking alcohol. Holden uses smoking and drinking as a escape from his stressful life: “I sat in the chair for a while and smoked a couple of cigarettes… Boy, I felt miserable. I felt so depressed, you can’t imagine”(Chapter 14, pg. 110). Holden tried to commit suicide, it was when he got beat up by Maurice (Elevator Operator) and was too depressed from it and from the prostitute (Sunny). Holden seems does not care about what other people think of him and what he does. He does whatever he wants and whenever he wants.
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