This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

A Separate Peace By John Knowles

1547 words - 6 pages

A Separate Peace by John Knowles

At the Devon school, in A Separate Peace, Finny and Gene seem to be
opposites in every way; Phineas is a leader and Gene is a follower,
Gene is mainly introverted and Phineas is outgoing and buoyant and
Phineas is an athlete and Gene is a scholar. But as the pages turn,
Finny and Gene begin to develop a bond, caused by Gene's envious rage
and the tree incident. Gene does not know how he could do such a thing
to such a close friend, his best pal, who was so innocent and noble of
heart and who's thoughts were so pure. In the blink of an eye, Gene
realizes that the underlying competition between Finny and himself was
no more than a figment of his imagination and that the thought of the
two competing had but only hit Finny's subconscious before it was
rejected instantaneously. When Phineas returns from the hospital and
his stay at home, crutch-bound, never to compete in sports again, Gene
begins to evolve himself around Finny, the person he always wished he
were, allowing Finny to live through himself and training for a
fantastical sports event as Finny would've done. Gene is sympathetic
towards Finny, but also takes on Finny's ideas and characteristics
willingly and lets Finny's identity overtake his own. Finny and Gene,
now living through one-another, create an imaginary world at Devon,
were wars do not exist and were there is no need for Leper Lepellier
to enlist in an army or be emotionally breached. The war is just a
conspiracy as was Gene's true feelings

toward Finny and what really happened at the tree. Gene's deliberate
decision to push Finny off the tree was just another crazy idea that
the world was naive in believing to be true. The Olympics would
continue on its steady four-year pattern unhindered by this fake war
and Gene would compete in them. These sarcastic illusions allow the
pair to temporarily live in a peaceful dream world amid war and the
sinfulness of the truth-achieving a separate peace- but in their
efforts their maturity and development of their own identities are
affected. In A Separate Peace, John Knowles creates the codependent
partnership of Phineas and Gene, contrived from mixed feelings they
have about the reality of conflict and the war at hand. But these
falsehoods hinder the formation of each individual's own identity and
leads to the destruction of the characters' peaceful and innocent
adolescence.

The synergetic relationship of Phineas and Gene, built upon
codependency- one essentially needing the other- contrives one
singular identity for the two partners. After the accident, Gene goes
up to his empty dorm-room, once shared by himself and Finny.
Peculiarly, as Gene begins to try on Finny's clothes he has
satisfaction in the fact that he looks strikingly like Finny in the
mirror's reflection.

"But...

Find Another Essay On A Separate Peace by John Knowles

"A Book Report on A Separate Peace by John Knowles"

2221 words - 9 pages A Separate Peace is a novel written by John Knowles A Separate Peace is a novel written by John Knowles. Before Knowles started his career as a writer, at the age of fifteen he was a student at Philips Exeter Academy. It is similar to Devon, the school from which the novel takes place. He graduated Exeter in the year 1945. Instead of proceeding directly to college, he joined the war effort as part of the U.S. Army Air Force

Symbols in A Separate Peace, by John Knowles

595 words - 2 pages The theme “rite of passage” was used in the novel A Separate Peace, by John Knowles. This moving from innocence to adulthood was contained within three sets of interconnected symbols: summer and winter, the Devon and Naguamsett Rivers, and peace and war. These symbols served as a backdrop upon which the novel was developed. The loss if Gene Forrester’s innocence was examined through these motifs. The summer and winter sessions

Analysis of Leper In A Separate Peace by John Knowles

990 words - 4 pages "Truth: the most deadly weapon ever discovered by humanity. Capable of destroying entire perceptual sets, cultures, and realities. Outlawed by all governments everywhere. Possession is normally punishable by death." John Gilmore's perception of truth portrays a view extremely relative to the novel, A Separate Peace, by John Knowles. Knowles creates a theme of veracity in animus within the novel and supports it through the unique character

Coming of Age in A Separate Peace by John Knowles

963 words - 4 pages A Separate Peace “Sometimes people don't want to hear the truth because they don't want their illusions destroyed” -Friedrich Nietzsche. A Separate Peace by John Knowles is a coming of age and tragedy novel. In this book, John Knowles shows us the lives of teenage boys during World War II. They boys may seem alright with their cheerful attitudes, but the raging war is still on their minds. They are wondering what it would be like to become a

Gene’s Transformation throughout "A Separate Peace" by John Knowles

627 words - 3 pages In the novel, A Separate Peace, by John Knowles, the main character, Gene, transforms from a clueless individual, to one who understands events by the middle of the novel, when he starts to gain knowledge. By the end of the novel, Gene is a wise individual who has obtained his knowledge with age. In the beginning of the novel, Gene, is a clueless individual. He sees the worst in people and lets his evil side take over not only his mind but also

In the novel "A Separate Peace", by John Knowles

1117 words - 4 pages PoiseIn the novel A Separate Peace, by John Knowles, the protagonist Gene Forrester matures through three stages of his life at a New Hampshire prep school. At the beginning of the story, Gene is insecure and jealous of his charismatic friend, Phineas. Later in the tale, Gene's obsession with Phineas, or more often referred to as Finny, causes Gene to obtain Finny's identity after a tragic accident in which Gene disables Finny. At the end of the

Falling From Grace: "A Separate Peace" by John Knowles

902 words - 4 pages In A Separate Peace, by John Knowles, we as the reader are introduced to thenarrator, Gene Forrester, who takes us through flashbacks of his years at an exclusive NewHampshire prep school, Devon. The novel begins with the adult Gene returning to Devon.The sights of Devon, and in particular a large tree and a marble staircase, revive memoriesand deep emotions for Gene, which then introduces a number of characters, includingPhineas ("Finny"), who

Character Relationships in "A Separate Peace" by John Knowles

846 words - 3 pages In the book, A Separate Peace, by John Knowles, Gene and Finny have a complicated friendship. They are friends, but there are other feelings and desires convoluting the simplicity of friendship. Gene is jealous and angry at Finny at times, but he is also amazed by Finny's character while Finny thought of Gene as his best friend and admired him. Gene has many conflicting emotions about Finny while Finny is absolutely sure in himself; however

"A Separate Peace" by John Knowles chapter summaries

1538 words - 6 pages . Finny establishes a separate peace for the boys at Devon. A telegram arrives from Leper, saying that he has escaped and needs help. The boys are forced to realize that war has broken in upon them at last in a real and important way.Chapter 10:Gene recollects preparations for war undertaken by himself and others his age. Most of his time was exhausted in traveling around aimlessly to different places until the war was suddenly and prematurely

A Separate Peace by Dan Knowles

603 words - 2 pages A SEPARATE PEACEThe theme "rite of passage" was used in the novel A Separate Peace, by John Knowles. This moving from innocence to adulthood was contained within three sets of interconnected symbols: summer and winter, the Devon and Naguamsett Rivers, and peace and war. These symbols served as a backdrop upon which the novel was developed. The loss if Gene Forrester's innocence was examined through these motifs.The summer and winter sessions

Comparing "A separate Peace" by John Knowles with "Frankenstein" by Mary Shelley

629 words - 3 pages Someone once said " Competition does not build character it reveals it." This quote can be interpreted as meaning while competing against peers your true personality shows and is revealed. This statement can be related to novels A Separate Peace by John Knowles and Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. In both works the protagonist fights an ongoing battle and eventually shows the reader their true character. Gene Forrester and Victor Frankenstein

Similar Essays

A Separate Peace, By John Knowles

1193 words - 5 pages Perhaps the most interesting front in any war or any battle is the home front.A Separate Peace, by John Knowles, explores how a war affects life at home, and how war affects the teenagers who are preparing to enter it. Set over the course of a year at Devon School-- a New England preparatory academy high in prestige-- the book seeks to show that the lives most affected by a war may not be the soldiers, but the citizens of a country who might

A Separate Peace By John Knowles

710 words - 3 pages The three dichotomous symbols in A Separate Peace by John Knowles reinforce the innocence and evil of the main characters, Finny and Gene. Beside the Devon School flow two rivers on opposite sides of the school, the Naguamsett and the Devon. The Devon provides entertainment and happiness for Gene and Finny as they jump from the tree into the river and hold initiations into the Super Suicide Society of the Summer Session. Finny, Gene, and their

"A Separate Peace" By John Knowles

1120 words - 4 pages A Separate Peace(Compare and Contrast Finny and Gene)Have you ever had a best friend who was the complete the opposite of you? The novel, A Separate Peace, by John Knowles, tells of a pair of best friends who vary quite a bit from one another. Gene's best friend, Finny, is an athletic individual who loves to break the rules while he himself is a law abiding studious person. The two main characters in this novel are similar to and different from

Finding Peace In A Separate Peace By John Knowles

754 words - 3 pages Finding Peace Peace only comes at the price of great struggle and sacrifice for most people. In essence, it only comes when you have defeated the enemy, or the enemy has defeated you. John Knowles was able to capture the subtle goal and essence of his novel by titling it A Separate Peace. A Separate Peace is a story about Gene Forrester, the protagonist of the story, and his constant struggle with the underlying emotional conflicts presented