The Catcher in the Rye

The Catcher in the Rye

quote about holden's views on love

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I was half in love with her by the time we sat down. That's the thing about girls. Every time they do something pretty, even if they're not much to look at, or even if they're sort of stupid, you fall half in love with them, and then you never know where the hell you are. Girls. Jesus Christ. They can drive you crazy. They really can.

Holden Caulfield

Here, Holden reflects on the adolescent male’s (or perhaps most males’, most people’s) tendency to overreach, to create relationships in their minds on the basis of a single seemingly genuine encounter. A single “pretty” thing launches fantasies of love. The more alienated and lonely Holden becomes, the more he recedes into his own fantasies, yet he recognizes that seeking pleasure through this kind of imagination is just “crazy,” not an authentic way to temper the pain he feels.