Several characters in this novel undergo changes, both positive and negative, as a result of the shift from a peaceful summer session at the Devon School, to the reality of World War II.
During the novel, World War II is raging and at the peaceful Devon School for boys there is a gloom knowing that many of the students and their friends could be drafted for the war at any time....
The Horrors of War in A Separate Peace, a Novel by …
A mild-mannered, unassuming social worker (Lawrence Cook) is recruited by the CIA as a token black and proceeds to learn, and later apply, the techniques of urban guerrilla warfare in Chicago. Corrosive and provocative, this adaptation by Sam Greenlee's novel of political unrest, directed by veteran actor and former "Hogan's Heroes" star Ivan Dixon, remains one of the great missing chapters in black political filmmaking.
However, I want to fully understand it
The novel begins when Gene comes back to Devon to relive his experiences during the summer session. The first time the reader discovers some jealousy Gene feels toward Finny is when they go to have tea with Mr. and Mrs. Patch-Withers. Finny wears a Devon tie as a belt and a pink shirt and Gene concludes that Finny is the only person who can "get away" with an outfit like that. Shortly after, the boys "form a suicide society, and the membership requirement is one jump" out of a tree over the water. After losing his balance, Gene feels that Finny saves his life by grabbing him. During the rest of the novel, Gene’s jealousy toward Finny becomes stronger, such as during the game of Blitzball, where Finny is able to make up his own rules for a game he invents and "naturally" be best at it. During a different jump, Finny becomes unsteady because of Gene’s movements. Finny reaches out for Gene’s hand, but he lets him fall anyway and Finny receives a shattered leg as a result of the incident. Gene becomes increasingly guilty that he had a chance to save Finny but did not, while Finny is not able to comprehend that Gene is the reason he fell out of the tree. However, at the end of the novel, Finny becomes increasingly aware of the truth because of Brinker’s questioning. Finny tries to run from his problem, and the sounds of his first steps along with his cane collide "into the general tumult of his body falling clumsily down the white marble stairs." During the operation at the hospital, he dies because some bone marrow enters his bloodstream.
A Separate Peace: Theme Analysis | Novelguide
A. The basic conflict of the work is Gene’s jealousy toward Finny. Gene is jealous that Finny can get away with bending the rules of Devon and his athleticism. B. This conflict is internal until Finny is knocked out of the tree, which is when it becomes external because he takes out his frustration on Finny. C. Other conflicts of the novel include Finny’s resistance to connecting sports and the war (an internal conflict, although expressed in Blitzball), Gene’s guilt from knocking Finny out of the tree after Finny saved him from falling (a reoccurring thought throughout the novel), Finny’s broken leg (a struggle to overcome), etc.
A Separate Peace: Theme Analysis ..
Two great works of literature show this point: William Golding’s Lord of the Flies disturbingly illustrates the deterioration of a group of marooned British schoolboys from civilized to savage, and John Knowles’ A Separate Peace is the haunting story of a teenager’s inability to confess the truth to his best friend as they grapple with World War II....