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Growing up is the hardest thing in our life. It can be the most cheerful time that may become the time which you will expect, however it can be the most depressed time which you wish time can go faster at that moment. The main character of ‘Peter Pan’ and ‘The Catcher in the Rye’, who are Peter Pan and Holden Caulfield have all wished not growing up. Although they are the similar person who wishes they will not grow up, there are differences between them.
I agree in a large extent that ‘In essence, Holden’s problem in The Catcher in the Rye arise because he is a Peter Pan figure, never wanting to grow up.’. Holden and Peter Pan they both see themselves as a protector of innocence, having the desire of saving innocent children due to their sympathy.
For Peter Pan, after he accomplished his escape, he tried to saves children by inviting them to get to Neverland with him, who are orphans and ignored by parents, the ‘Lost Boys’.
A typical example of Holden says he wanted to be a catcher in the rye. He pictures a lot of children playing in a big field around the edge of a cliff while he imagines he would catch any children if they start to go over the cliff away from falling down. This indicates that he had the desire of protecting the innocence, especially as a primary virtue. Besides, Holden and Peter Pan, they both exemplify typical teenage feeling of alienation, hiding from the reality and afraid of change .
For Peter Pan, the Neverland was created by him in order to escape from the reality. And when he was unsatisfied of the request from Wendy of leaving Neverland, he was afraid of the change of the atmosphere in their cabin after Wendy left. In an article, it pointed out Holden wanted nothing to do with the world although everything is wrong with the society, it outlined Holden is a fragile person to take any blame or face disappointment. A typical example of Holden’s love toward the American Museum of Natural History. The museum display is always frozen and unchanging, everything keeps in a simple, understandable way, which appeal to Holden. This indicates that he is terrified by the unpredictable changes of the world since he also hates conflicts, confused by Allie’s senseless death and fear of interaction with people. Moreover, Holden and Peter Pan, they both have alienation and loneliness.
For Peter Pan, when Wendy and the ‘Lost boy’ go back to the place where they belong to instead of the Neverland, he becomes pessimistic and all by himself after all. In a research, it pointed out that Holden is not a conversationalist since he has trouble getting along with his roommates and the teacher and his background, which created a lot of troublesome that once his father met with the principle and the teacher. A typical example of Holden arrived in New York, he kept think of who he could make content with, he did think of a range of people he knows , for instance, Jane. However, he does not have the courage to make the phone call, ending up with calling nobody. This indicates his calls to Jane Gallagher are aborted to protect his precious and fragile sense of individuality. On the other hand, unlike Holden, the motivation of Peter Pan saving the children is different. Peter Pan ‘saves’ children because of his loneliness, he has no one to be with at the first place in Neverland, he does not want to be alone then he ‘save’ the ‘Lost Boys’ of saying he save them from the crude family whose ignored them and away from the world. In fact, he saves children due to his selfishness to fill in the hole of his heart, finding someone he can communicate with and always agree with him to avoid conflict. On the opposite, the purpose of Holden saving children because he thought the world is lousy. A typical example of Holden goes to Phoebe’s school to leave a note, he gets mad when he sees violent language are written on the wall, he wants to erase as soon as possible to avoid any children see it. This indicates Holden is thinking more about the children from the deepest of his heart than Peter Pan.
In conclusion, despite the difference of the motivation of saving children, since Holden and Peter Pan are similar to the behavior to be the protector of innocence, thought of being alienation and characteristic of being distant to the world and loneliness, I agree in a large extent in the statement of ‘In essence, Holden’s problem in The Catcher in the Rye arise because he is a Peter Pan figure, never wanting to grow up.’
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