Re: Certainly

Subject: Re: Certainly
From: Cecilia Baader (
Date: Tue Jan 08 2002 - 09:46:41 GMT

--- Chris Kubica <> wrote:

> I suppose it has something to do with Holden ALSO being a phony,
> sometimes, without knowing it, eh? Or being phony with Phoebs,
> one of the kids near HC's crazy cliff?

I've often thought that this is precisely the point: Holden's just as much
of a phoney as everybody else, he just hates it more. Have you ever heard
the old cliche, we hate in others that which we hate the most in

The best example is that scene in the bar where he runs into D.B.'s
girlfriend and her date. He talks to them, asks them all the expected
phoney things, even though all the while he's justifying this behavior by
telling himself that this is what you have to do in order to live in this
world. Holden's angry, but not angry enough to shuck off the coil of all
social customs.

He does things like that throughout the novel, but the difference between
Holden and the rest of the phoneys is that he's self-aware. He doesn't
want to be like them.

So then the question arises: if this is what Holden is like on the inside
and this is how he acts on the outside, how can we truly judge anybody?
You never know what's going on inside somebody's head. That person may be
wanting to stop kids from falling off a cliff in a wheat field and is just
making conversation while he works out the details.

And if that's true, then who is really a phoney? You can't make the
differentiation because you can't ever really know. I mean, look at what
a little pain in the twasane Holden is to the people around him. Nobody
would guess in a million years what's going on inside his head. A person
who made the decision to hate all the phoneys would certainly lump Holden
in with them and be wrong, no? So then that begs the conclusion that you
can't hate anybody. You've got to love everybody no matter what they're
like, sort of like Seymour's fat lady, because maybe we're all Holdens

Beautiful, no?


Do You Yahoo!?
Send FREE video emails in Yahoo! Mail!
* Unsubscribing? Mail with the message

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b25 : Wed Mar 20 2002 - 09:27:53 GMT