Catcher In The Rye Depression Research Paper

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Depression is one of the most destructive and common mental illnesses found in both adults and adolescents today. As a matter of fact, according to, about 1 in every 10 Americans will be diagnosed with depression during their lifetime. An article on states that this can prove to be extremely disastrous because untreated depression can have many side effects including insomnia, low self-esteem, and thoughts of suicide regardless of the cause of depression. J.D. Salinger demonstrates this issue in his fictional novel “The Catcher in the Rye” where a teenage boy attempts to deal with his depression. This intriguing story explores how the protagonist Holden Caulfield struggles with alienation and cynicism as…show more content…
For 16-year-old Holden Caulfield, it is one of the most challenging parts of his life because his depression is amplified due his inability to create a strong physical or emotional connection with nearly anything. His constant battle with desolation becomes evident as he lies in Ackley’s room and thinks, “Boy, did I feel rotten. I felt so damn lonesome”(54). These thoughts pop up numerous times throughout the novel, pointing out that Holden is desperate for any kind of companionship. Despite the fact that Holden thinks of Ackley as a pimply-faced, unappealing person, he still goes to him for support, highlighting his lonesomeness and isolation. Another source of Holden’s depression stems from the early death of his brother, Allie. This ends up being extremely devastating. It is so emotionally detrimental he occasionally loses touch with reality and “started talking, sort of out loud, to Allie”(110). One can only imagine how greatly a teenager is impacted by not only death, but the death of a sibling. As a result, Holden is not able to emotionally attach to any person, place, or thing due to his fear that he may lose them in a similar way that he lost his brother. However, Holden’s depression eventually leads to more than his emotional disconnection and feelings of

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