The murderers of the two stunning American cases are related to a book called “The Catcher in the Rye.”
One night in December 1980, when Mark Chapman took out his pistol and pointed to John Lennon, the famous rock singer, he was covered with a watchman, The Catcher in the Rye. After Chapman opened five shots to the column, he sat on the street without hesitation and read Salinger’s novel. He told the police: “This book is for me.” A few years later, Chapman revealed that he killed Lennon in order to turn himself into the book’s hero Holden.
Four months later, President Reagan was assassinated. At the scene of the crime, the police found a “Watcher in the Rye” in the pocket of the murderer John Hinckley. The book has been turned over.
But this book is not a book dedicated to accompanying the murderer. It has also accompanied countless Americans who have achieved great achievements or conformity.
The author who wrote this book died on January 27, 2010 at his home in New Hampshire, USA, at the age of 91. His name is Jerome David Salinger.
There are a lot of quirks
Salinger lived in seclusion for nearly 60 years. After he became famous, he lived in a simple and simple way. It is said that he only had one interview with a middle school student. Salinger’s life has always been a mystery. His life experience is simple, but his inner world has always been regarded as a deep cave. “The fans” can only speculate on his spiritual world from his limited works and rumors.
Salinger was born on New Year’s Day in 1919. His father is a son of the Jewish rabbi, who is a cheese and ham business and has a wealthy family. Salinger had little interest in learning. He dropped out of school in middle school, read a military school for one year, and then went to two universities. He also dropped out of school. At Columbia University’s evening school, he listened to a novelist teaching writing skills and wrote a novel from then on. During the Second World War, Salinger was enlisted in the army and participated in the Normandy landings and the Battle of Ardennes. In 1945, he was admitted to the hospital due to mental problems and left the battlefield. But until the end of the war, he had been working for the US Department of Defense in Europe, tracking the Nazis. Here, he married a Nazi female doctor, but soon the two broke up.
Some people have analyzed from the works that Salinger has a pedophilia tendency, but there is no evidence to prove it. He likes young girls, but he is sure:
At the age of 22, he fell in love with the 16-year-old daughter of the playwright Eugene O’Neill. Two years later, Una became the wife of Chaplin.
When Salinger published his short story collection “Nine Story” at the age of 34, he fell in love with 19-year-old college student Claire Douglas. In 1955, they got married, and they had two children after marriage. They divorced in 1967.
At the age of 53, Salinger fell in love with Yale’s freshman, Maynard. When Maynard went to visit him in the summer, he never went back. After 9 months of living with Salinger, Salinger did not want to have another child and broke up.
Since then, he has had a romance with an actress. In the late 1980s, he married Colin O’Neill, who was much younger than him. Ms. O’Neill respected her husband’s seclusion rules, so people knew very little about this marriage.
Menard, who lived with him, revealed Salinger’s privacy through his memoirs, saying that he has a strong desire to control and is very concerned about his health. His eating habits are strange, eating frozen peas for breakfast and half-cooked mutton burgers for dinner. Salinger’s daughter also wrote a memoir, saying that his father particularly hated the body of a woman’s pregnancy and often added to her mother’s bad words. He has a lot of other hobbies, for example, he will sit for a few hours in a wooden box that is said to cure the disease.
Written is “rich second generation”
Salinger loves writing, and he also carries a typewriter when he is in the army. In 1948, his short story “The Good Days of Banana Fish” was published in The New Yorker, which became an enviable “New Yorker” writer. Since then, he has only written this magazine for a total of 14 works.
In July 1950, the publication of “The Catcher in the Rye” made Salinger famous, and reprinted 10 times in more than two months.
Before “The Catcher in the Rye”, American literature always idealized childhood, and childhood is always happy and innocent. Salinger’s work has made “growth” a bit of tragic color. After the Second World War, the United States became the world’s number one power, the middle class increased, the phenomenon of social alienation was serious, and the people’s ideals were disillusioned and their beliefs were missing. Some people refer to this period of the United States as the “weak age.”
The novel, in the tone of the protagonist Holden, tells about his two days of experience and feelings in New York City after he was expelled from school. Holden is only 16 years old, much like today’s “rich second generation” in China. He was born into a wealthy family, but his inner contradictions and spiritual emptiness; he was eager to find an ideal spiritual world, but no one could guide him. He is both a traitor and a victim. His complaints about school and education still seem to point to people’s hearts today: “What you want to do is to study, to learn, to get ahead, so that you can buy a Cadillac in the future; when the football team loses, you I have to pretend to be very concerned. What you do all day long is to talk about women, wine and sex…”
When the book was published, it was sought after by young people. They believed that it had voiced its own voice, and Salinger became the spokesperson of the post-war generation in the United States. For a time, imitating Holden’s words and deeds became a fashion, windbreaker and inverted red cap became the popular street scene in the United States.
After the publication of the novel, the critics were mixed. The New York Times praised it as “an exotic, talented debut”, and the criticism revolves around the focus of moral corruption, nihilism, sexual description, and excessive use of rough language. An angry parent specifically counted the swearing in the novel, and several American high school teachers were forced to resign because they taught “The Catcher in the Rye” in the classroom. However, time gives the most impartial judgment. In the 21st century, “The Catcher in the Rye” has become a classic of American contemporary literature. Not only was it selected by Time magazine as one of the best English novels from 1923 to 2005, the well-known modern library ( The Modern Library also incorporates it into the best English novels of the 20th century, with cumulative sales of up to 65 million copies.
Write only for your own happiness
Beginning with the third edition of The Catcher in the Rye, the photo of the author on the cover was forcibly removed by Salinger, and he began to show signs of concealing the world. Soon, he bought a piece of land with more than 90 acres (about 360,000 square meters) and retired to the countryside of New Hampshire. He lives in a small house on the top of the hill, surrounded by trees, with tall wire mesh and a siren on the net. He seems to be practicing Holden’s dream of “building a hut with his own money, spending the rest of his life in it” and no longer “having a damn stupid conversation with anyone”.
His study room is a cement chamber with only one skylight. Every day at 8:00, he takes the box lunch and writes it until 5:30 in the afternoon. No one in the family can disturb him. People want to visit him, but also to send letters in advance, it is more common for strangers to be rejected by him. He rarely appeared in public, did not accept media interviews, and even appeared in nearby towns, almost no talking to people. It has been difficult for the media to find a photo of him for decades.
Is he still writing? This is a concern for everyone. After the publication of The Catcher in the Rye, he only produced three middle and one short stories in more than 10 years, and he did not publish his works after 1970. Some people think that he has not written a word; some people say that he has been writing, but he will burn the manuscript before Gogo as before Gogol; others say that he has written many works and will publish it after his death. Maynard said that although she had not seen it before, she believed that at least two novels were locked in his safe.
The success of “The Catcher in the Rye” has made Salinger well-fed, and the novel still sells more than 200,000 copies a year in the United States. Before his death, he disagreed with the publication of other short stories published in addition to the Nine Story. Many publishers have been fighting his ideas for years. In 1974, some unpublished novels were published and sold. For this reason, Salinger broke the silence and called the New York Times: “The book is no longer published, which gives me a wonderful peace. Very peaceful. Publishing is a serious violation of my privacy. I like writing. However, I am just writing for myself and my own happiness.”
Perhaps Salinger chose to escape the adult world just because he wanted to keep his childhood forever. The words in The Catcher in the Rye are so suitable to be his epitaph, and Salinger can fulfill his wish in heaven:
”The children play games in a large field of wheat. Tens of thousands of children, no one nearby – no one, I mean – except me, me? I am standing on the edge of the idiot. I The duty is to watch there. If any child rushes to the edge of the cliff, I will catch him. I mean the children are running wild, I don’t know where I am running, I have to come from somewhere. I caught them. I did this all day. I just wanted to be a watchman in a wheat field.”