Though not everyone can be described using one of these approaches to life, the approaches completely conform to these characters to create one realist, one idealist, and one isolationist; thereby providing the foundation of the novel. The realist is Brinker.
First, he examines the stairs and notices that they are made of very hard marble. Inhe was 16 and living at Devon with his best friend and roommate, Phineas nicknamed Finny.
At the time, World War II is taking place and has a prominent effect on the story. Gene and Finny, despite being opposites in personality, are close friends at Devon: During his time at Devon, Gene goes through a period of intense kinship with Finny.
Finny creates a rite of initiation by having members jump into the Devon River from a large, high tree. This rivalry climaxes and is ended when, as Finny and Gene are about to jump off the tree, Gene impulsively jounces the branch they are standing on, causing Finny to fall and shatter his leg.
Because of his "accident", Finny learns that he will never again be able to compete in sports, which are most dear to him. This leads to Gene starting to think like Finny to try to be a better person and to try to solve some of his envy towards him. At first Finny does not believe him and afterward feels extremely hurt.
During a meeting of the Golden Fleece Debating Society, Brinker sets up a show trial and, based upon his shaking of the branch, accuses Gene of trying to kill Finny. On his way out, Finny falls down a flight of stairs the same ones Gene visits at the beginning of the novel and again breaks the leg he had shattered before.
The two forgive each other. The next day, Finny dies during the operation to set the bone when bone marrow enters his bloodstream during the surgery.
Characters[ edit ] Gene Forrester: Gene focuses on, and succeeds at, academics. Gene is from "three states from Texas", and is therefore somewhat unaccustomed to Northeastern culture.
He is the main character. He always sees the best in others, seeks internal fulfillment free of accolades, and shapes the world around himself to fit his desires.
He is a prodigious athlete, succeeding in every sport until his leg is shattered in his fall from the tree. He ceaselessly strives for order during the Winter Session at Devon.
During the questioning of Finny by Brinker, Finny changes the story to make Gene appear innocent of his actions in the tree. Finny cites Lepellier as an unreachable witness.
He is the first student in his class to enlist in the military. Late in the novel, Leper goes insane from the stress of his enlistment in the army. Assertions of homoerotic overtones[ edit ] Various parties have asserted that the novel implies homoeroticism between Gene and Finny, including those who endorse a queer reading of the novel, and those who condemn homosexuality as immoral.
For example, the book was challenged in the Vernon-Verona-Sherill, NY School District as a "filthy, trashy sex novel"  despite having no substantial female characters and describing no sexual activity. Though frequently taught in U. If so in this case, both characters are totally unaware of it.
In that time and place, my characters would have behaved totally differently.- A Separate Peace A Separate Peace is a novel by John Knowles that is about prep school experiences during World War II. This book was a good story about an . 10 Signs You Know What Matters.
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