Conformity in the 1950's

Conformity is a standard expectation to be accepted into society. These expectations need to be reached to be considered a decent or normal part of the society or seen as a helpful part of the community. These things & standards can also include what they wear & go out in, what they drive, where they go to school or work & who you are seen with in public. Conformity in the 1950’s began with the need to have cars etc. This began to occur when the mass production took place. Conformity evolved when the mass production took place creating the idea of everyone needing to have a certain thing or product to fit in with today’s society. Some examples of conformity in Catcher in the Rye are that these teenagers feel the need & want to be with someone & in the company of someone. “All of a sudden, this lady got on at Trenton and sat down next to me. Practically the whole car was empty, because it was pretty late and all, but she sat down next to me, instead of an empty seat,” This example shows that people cannot stand to be alone, even if you don’t know the person, everyone just had a fear of being alone. Another example is where Caulfield gets kicked out of school. This is a example of conformity through the thought & expectation of finishing & being enrolled in school & not dropping out or getting kicked out. . "Daddy'll kill you!" is what his little sister tells him, as she realises the expectation of her dad of him & the societies expectations of school. J.D  Sallinger challenges conformity in the 1950's through Holden Caulfield. Caulfield uses the language & words such as 'phonies' to express his frustration about the idea of conformity. He uses this quote "It's full of phonies, and all you do is study so that you can learn enough to be smart enough to be able to buy a goddam Cadillac some day," to show that he is challenging this & that he believes that not everyone has to conform to be a success or to do what you want.

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