Holden's parents

Holden’s parents play an important role in the novel The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger. Although they do not interact with Holden directly, several flashbacks and considerations about them reveal the strained relationship that Holden has with his mother and father. 

At the beginning of the novel, Holden reveals that his parents “would have about two hemorrhages apiece if I told anything pretty personal about them. They’re quite touchy about anything like that, especially my father” (p. 1). Holden’s ironic attitude towards them suggests that they do not get along and that he has a particularly tense relationship with his father. 

Holden’s mother

Despite their tense relationship, Holden cares about his mother. He reveals that she “gets very hysterical” (p. 54)...

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