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A Separate Peace - Gene's Journey

  • Date Submitted: 01/28/2010 06:28 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 64.9 
  • Words: 850
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Gene Forrester's difficult journey towards maturity and the adult


world is a main focus of the novel, A Separate Peace, by John Knowles.


Gene's journey begins the moment he pushes Phineas from the tree and


the process continues until he visits the tree fifteen years later.


Throughout this time, Gene must become self-aware, face reality and


the future, confront his problems, as well as forgive and accept the


person that he is. With the jouncing of the limb, Gene realizes his


problems and the true person he is inside. Fifteen years later, when


revisiting the tree, he finally accepts and forgives himself. This


journey is a long and painful one. At the end of this long and winding


road filled with ditches, difficulties and problems, Gene emerges a


mature adult.




    Gene jounces the limb and causes Finny's fall and at that moment


becomes aware of his inner-self and learns of his true feelings. This


revelation comes to him back in his room before he and Finny leave for


the tree. It surrounds him with the shock of his true self until he


finally reacts by jouncing the limb. Up in the tree, before the two


friends are about to make their "double-jump", Gene sees Finny in this


new light. He realizes that Finny feels no jealousy or hatred towards


him and that Finny is indeed perfect in every way. Gene becomes aware


that only he is the jealous one. He learns of his animosity and that


he really is a "savage underneath". Over a long period of time Gene


had been denying his feelings of hatred towards Finny, saying that it


was normal for him to feel this way. Now all of the feelings come back


to him and he sees how terrible he really is. The realization that


these feelings are one-sided causes Gene to to fall dramatically in


comparison to Finny...

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