Mental Health in The Catcher in the Rye

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  • Mental Health in The Catcher in the Rye
  • Hello. I'm Holden Caulfield, and I'm mentally unstable.
  • Scene One: Holden pretends to have been shot by Maurice.
  • Scene Two: Holden is losing his mind and believes that he is going to fall through the street.
  • Many people deal with mental health issues. Some people are born with mental health issues, and some people develop them later in life as a result of a traumatic experience. The main character in this novel, Holden Caulfield, suffers from mental health issues and they are seen throughout the book.
  • During this scene, Holden pretends to have been shot by a pimp named Maurice. Holden had just been assaulted and robbed by Maurice and he is upset about is, so he pretends that Maurice shot him and afterwards he killed Maurice and shoved his body down an elevator shaft. Though this scene does not show mental health problems as strongly as others, it definitely shows that he has problems. He is not completely mentally healthy, because he really wishes that this had happened.
  • During this scene, Holden believes that every time he crosses the street, he is going to fall through the street and not make it to the other side. As a result of this fear and paranoia, he begins to speak with his brother Allie, who is dead. He keeps telling Allie not to let him fall through the street and to help him get to the other side. This scene shows that he is mentally unhealthy because it shows he suffers from extreme paranoia and he is talking to people who aren't there.
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