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The Catcher in the Rye | Study Guide

J. D. Salinger

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Course Hero. "The Catcher in the Rye Study Guide." July 28, 2016. Accessed March 19, 2018. https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Catcher-in-the-Rye/.


Course Hero, "The Catcher in the Rye Study Guide," July 28, 2016, accessed March 19, 2018, https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Catcher-in-the-Rye/.


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J. D. Salinger

Year Published





Romance, Fiction

Perspective and Narrator

The Catcher in the Rye is told from the first-person point of view of Holden Caulfield, a teenager living in New York City in the late 1940s. Holden's ambivalence about the adult world drives the novel's conflicts and provokes questions about human behavior.


The Catcher in the Rye is told primarily in the past tense.

About the Title

When Holden misunderstands the words of a song, he imagines children at play in a field of rye that ends at a cliff and says he would like to be the "catcher" who protects the children from falling. The symbol of the catcher in the rye shows Holden's ambivalence about becoming an adult.


This study guide and infographic for J. D. Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye offer summary and analysis on themes, symbols, and other literary devices found in the text. Explore Course Hero's library of literature materials, including documents, Q&A pairs, and flashcards created by students and educators.

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