Slinger uses effective characterization to explore how Holder finds growing up painful and difficult. The holder is frightened of maturing because he has convinced himself that the adult world is corrupt and that all the adults are “phony, hypocritical and false. He has made this generalization to detach himself from adults, to resist entry into the society that they belong to. Holder’s actions contradict what he believes as he is a compulsive liar; “l have this tiny tumor on the brain.
The holder is not shy to lie to people around him.
He lies to Mrs. Morrow – the woman he meets in the rain after leaving school -because he does not like interacting with new people or opening up to them, in case they are “phony’. The holder cannot reach full maturity because he ignores the advice of his elders, like Mrs. Morrow, as he does not want guidance in his Journey to adulthood – he does not want to become what society wants him to become, so he remains a child.
Holder’s own physique is telling him to change and to mature into adulthood despite what he believes, “I’m six-foot-etc:–and-a-half and I have grey hair. ” His body appears to be maturing, but his mind lacks this placement and remains child-like. Slinger uses this contrast of his emotions with his physical appearance to imply that his body is telling him to grow up, but his mind is resisting, in order to stay innocent and pure for as long as possible.
Slinger even uses his name to show his youthfulness, Holder Coalfield can be broken up Into ‘Hold-on’ as if he is not ready to grow up, and that it is too difficult for him to handle. And ‘Call’ is a part of the amnion, which protects the baby’s head during birth, this relates to Holder as he Is metaphorically protected by this and does not mature as a result.