The Catcher in the Rye

how is lying and deception used to preserve innocence in the book?

Does lying help to preserve youth innocence?

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Holden abhors deceit and lies in other people and labels them as phoniness. Unfortunately, he sees his loss of innocence as the fault of other people, and he consistently looks for flaws in the people around him as an excuse to shun them. This tendency overshadows most of Holden's interactions with others, and yet, he never steps back and looks at the phoniness and deceit in his own life. Holden is a compulsive liar, but he sees himself as perfect. The lies he tells are mean and cruel.... he has a mean spirit..... he means to inflict emotional pain. None-the-less, he cannot or will not see his own flaws and believes himself a virtuous soul in a world devoid of the same. He cannot blame his loss of innocence on other people because he was his own worst enemy.


Catcher in the Rye