The two novels, Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger and Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison, are classics of their time. In both works the structural style reflects the personality of the respective protagnonist. A solid structure portrays confidence, while an erratic structure gives an impression of uncertainty. The ways in which elder family members are treated in each text expresses the relationship between the older generation and the younger generation. In the nineteen fifties feministic issues were very controversial. How the female characters are presented in each book show some of these controversies. The invisible man is a more positive character than Holden, and that is showed through the portals of symbolism throughout the two classic novels.
In Catcher in the Rye, Salinger’s desultory arrangement of narrative summary and scene work shows Holden’s insecurities, moreover in Invisible Man; Ellison’s straightforward organization displays an assured personality. Ellison writes, “He was a tall blonde man, and as my face came close to his he looked insolently out of his blue eyes and cursed me…”(Ellison 4) Ellison easily weaves narrative summary into this scene but still stays within the parameters of what is happening. Contrarily , Salinger’s intricate pattern seems more like rambling. He writes, “The more expensive a school is, the more crooks it has -I’m not kidding. Anyway, I kept standing next to that crazy cannon, looking down at the game and freezing my ass off.” (Salinger 4) The two sentences shift from narrative summary to scene but have completely unrelated topics.
In the two novels, the relationships within families differ from absent parents to a grandfather’s legacy. With the absence of authority from his parents, Holden rebels by failing out of multiple boarding schools. In addition, he avoids his parents furthering the distance between them. When asked if he has spoken to his them, Holden replies, “No, sir, I haven’t communicated...