Diagnosing Holden Caufeild Justin Strunk (Darth Viled)

In Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye, Holden is an average teen going through life shown by his behavior and his overall mood

Holden Caufeild is an average teen goring through life because we see only about a weekend to two weeks worth of his story. With that in mind to be considered to have a mental health issue it has to be over a long period of time (a month or more) to even be considered to be a mental health problem.

Holden's behavior is quit peculiar because compared to other teens it's really different but since the word "normal" can't be used to describe a person effectively because for something to be considered "normal" it would have to the same outcome a majority of the time. Readers of "The Catcher in The Rye" look at Holden's actions and claim them to be "not normal". Holden's behavior is perfectly "normal" because there is only one Holden like himself and that is him. With that in mind it makes diagnosing Holden with being an average teen easier. Another big point that shows that Holden is a teen is that Holden is only 16 years old which is decently into his brain changing and altering different hormones which would cause different reactions to things compared to an adult or a child. This is because the Frontal lobe of the brain is under reconstruction in the sense that it's being more developed and that is done by hormones and with a fluctuating amount of hormones it will cause different feelings and actions to take place, also the frontal lobe takes care of actions in humans. With Holden being a teen and going through big brain changes and growing it causes the frontal lobe not to function as well as it could when it's not going through these changes.

Holden's overall mood was that of a young teen changing and becoming more of an adult. This is shown when he sees the little boy signing the poem "Coming Thro' the Rye" and he decides he wants to save children from growing up/falling off a cliff near a field of rye. Other changes in his mood showing his changing are in his decisions. When teens start grow their brains change in all different parts of the cerebrum (also known as the cortex) is the part of the brain we control mostly. The frontal lobe changes in this area because all the choices we make are done here. With this in mind and recalling from the first paragraph Holden's actions and choices are perfectly plausible to be an average teenager in an ever growing and changing world. Holden has no guidance in this changing world and feels lost. It is very apparent in the book that he isn't close to his parents so they cant really give him guidance. With this factor his possible erratic behavior changes his mood quickly. Holden is just a growing teen in an ever changing world that needs guidance.

In Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye, Holden is an average teen going through life shown by his behavior and his overall mood. His mood and behavior constantly changing his his decisions are caused by his brain and body changing are very apparent things in the story and are more plausible theories rather him suffering from a mental disorder

National Institute of Mental Health. “The Teen Brain: Still Under Construction.” National Institute of Mental Health, 2011,


Accessed 8 Feb. 2017.

Salinger, J.D. The Catcher in the Rye. Little, Brown, and Company, 1951.

Kinser, Patricia Anne. “Brain Structures and their Functions.” Serendip studio, 2012

http://serendip.brynmawr.edu/bb/kinser/Structure1.html Accessed 5 Feb. 2017.

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