Holden Caulfield and James Castle
The Catcher in the Rye


In D.B.'s room, desperately trying to think of a single thing he likes, Holden remembers James Castle, a boy he know from Elkton Hills, who jumped out of the window, when some class mates try to force him to take something back he said about them. He remembers him as a "skinny little weak-looking guy", who committed suicide for saving his own integrity. To Holden, he is a martyr and he admires that he rejected to be phony and take back what he said about Stabile. James is characterised as a saviour, because he dies for integrity and maybe justice. He sacrificed himself, so that Stabile's fraternity were expelled and probably never tried to treat someone like this again, because of this great shock they got. It's hard to imagine how one would feel after making someone jump out of the window. So in a way, James saved them as well by teaching them a lesson, they won't be able to forget. We don't really get to know, what a motif he had to kill himself, but one could say that he had planned it anyway, out of unknown other reason, or even that his suicide is an expression of selfishness – he probably had a family, who was "sad as hell" to put it in Holden-style – and great anger, nearly not imaginable. What we can interpret is, that James Castle was a kind of model for him. He sees him as an older Allie. Like him, he is dead and cannot change. So he isn't able to disappoint Holden like he fears that Jane would do. Also James initials J. C., standing for the today most known martyr, would support the saviour motif, like Holden's name because of sounding like "hold on" is a hint for his refuse to grow up.


von silent_water88


 


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