Holden's Voice

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Holden's Voice by Mind Map: Holden's Voice

1. “I mean you had to say something.”

2. “I’d tell you the rest of the story, but I might puke if I did.”

2.1. Holden's strict refusal to tell his tale might be because he doesn't think he has one yet, because he hasn't really found himself.

2.1.1. External Link: https://www.ted.com/talks/andrew_solomon_how_the_worst_moments_in_our_lives_make_us_who_we_are#t-540405

3. "That killed me."

3.1. Holden is constantly using negative language like this, expressing even happy ideas with the most negative wording possible.

3.1.1. External Link:

4. “After the Christmas thing was over, the goddamn picture started. It was so putrid I couldn’t take my eyes off it.”

4.1. Again with the negative language choice, but it's interesting that he also finds it highly captivating. So much, in fact, that he wont take his eyes off it.

4.1.1. External Link:

5. Thesis: The Voice created by J.D. Salinger for Holden reveals that in order to succeed and be happy in your life, you need to find yourself. Through imitation, trial and error, you can come much closer to who you really are.

6. Personal Experiences

6.1. In my experience, finding who you are can be an integral part of doing well in my life.. Through my experiences, i've come to discover that my experiences have shaped me into a very different person, and that in turn has allowed me to do things I never thought possible, such as experience more success in school.

7. “Then the old lady that was around 100 years old and I shot the breeze for a while.”

7.1. Holden "shoots the breeze" with a lot of people in this novel, which is when he acts like someone he isn't to engage in pleasant conversation with another character because he hates how his voice makes him sound in genuine conversation.

8. “But i’m crazy. I swear to god I am. About halfway to the bathroom, I sort of started pretending I had a bullet in my guts. Old Maurice had plugged me.”

8.1. This is a little different from shooting the breeze, as this time Holden is conversing with himself, convincing himself that he's crazy. I think this is because Holden is trying to find something about himself he knows to be true.

9. “Old Mrs. Morrow didn’t say anything, but boy, you should’ve seen her. I had her glued to her seat. You take somebody’s mother, all they want to hear about is what a hot-shot their son is.”

9.1. Another example of Holden using his Shoot the Breeze tactic to start up a pleasant conversation with the mother of a id he knew from an old school.

10. “I flunked Oral Expression, though.”

10.1. This is a prime example that the fact Holden hasn't found his voice is holding him back. In order to pass Oral Expression, you need to carry on a conversation and keep it on topic, but it's much easier to do if you have lots of experiences you remember clearly to speak about. Holden has very few of these that can be discussed in a classroom setting, and as such doesn't like expressing himself.

11. “Even the couple of nice teachers on the facility, they were phonies too.

11.1. Holden calls people Phonies when they do things he does like Shoot the Breeze and pretend to be someone they aren't.

12. “How marvelous to see you!” old Lillian Simmons said. Strictly a Phony.

12.1. Another example of him critisizing people who do the same thing he does.