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Moral Education in the Age of Individualism


reviewed by Daniel Hendrickson — November 16, 2009

coverTitle: Moral Education in the Age of Individualism
Author(s): Jose Mesa
Publisher: VDM Verlag Dr. Müller, Saarbrücken
ISBN: 3639089081, Pages: 288, Year: 2008
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Holden Caulfield is 76 this year, and he’s back in the news.  In fact, he’s in court.  J.D. Salinger and his ever-controversial 1951 publication, The Catcher in the Rye, is not even remotely mentioned in Jose Mesa’s recent book, Moral Education in the Age of Individualism, so what’s newsworthy and legislative about Holden this time around is better answered through an online search of recent archives of The New York Times.  Why mention the legal fracas here?  It strikes me that Salinger’s portrayal of an adolescent and the society around him offers something of a tension Mesa appreciates: an urgent need to better understand oneself and a willingness to wonder about the values, expectations, and opportunities one’s community offers.  While one perspective in the Times argues that Holden no longer inspires, but annoys and irritates young readers, the tension Mesa recognizes between individual self-quest and being a member of a... (preview truncated at 150 words.)


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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record, Date Published: November 16, 2009
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 15833, Date Accessed: 12/13/2017 12:06:00 PM

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About the Author
  • Daniel Hendrickson
    Teachers College, Columbia University
    E-mail Author
    DANIEL HENDRICKSON, MA, MDIV, is a candidate in the Philosophy and Education PhD program at Teachers College, Columbia University. He has taught philosophy at Creighton University in Omaha, NE, at Fordham University, New York, NY, and in East Africa, at the Salvatorian Institute of Philosophy and Theology, Morogoro, TZ. He is a member of the Jesuits.
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