A Separate Peace Literary Analysis

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Finny’s first fails to grow when he denies the wars existence. His denial of the war is the first sign that he will not be able to accept the times and develop. When Finny returns back to the Devon School, he has a conversation with Gene in which he states, “‘Don’t be a sap,’ he gazed with cool self-possession at me ‘there isn’t any war.’”(Knowles 55). Finny is telling Gene the war is all a conspiracy which shows his denial. He does not accept the war is real because he does not want to believe that these awful things are happening to him, such as his accident and the war going on. James Ellis writes in his paper, “A Separate Peace: The Fall from Innocence”, “For Phineas, who had even before his fall denied the American bombing of Central…show more content…
As soon as Gene admits what he has done he narrates the immediate description of Phineas, “He looked older than I has ever seen him. ‘Of course you didn’t.’”(Knowles 55). Finny denies Gene’s part in the accident. Phineas does not want to believe that someone could do something so sinful in his world. The horrible feeling this news gives Finny would make him look years older, as Gene describes. In a scholarly article titled, “A Separate Peace”, it states, “Finny tries to absolve Gene of malicious intent, and the boys make peace with each other.”(“A Separate Peace” 1) Finny convinces Gene to take back his previous confession. Gene says he was not making sense which Finny accepts and so he no longer believes Gene is guilty, and they are friends again. If Finny had not denied Gene’s part in the accident in the beginning, then he never would have run from the trial and his life never would have been so horribly…show more content…
When Gene tries to tell Finny what he did, Finny says, “‘I don’t know anything. Go away. I’m tired and you make me sick. Go away.’”(Knowles 56) Phineas is immediately telling Gene to leave, as soon as he hears the negative news. He denies what happened to him and pushes Gene away along with the truth. James Ellis states in his piece, “What Gene wants is to return to the world of the winter carnival and his training for the olympics, his and Phineas’ withdrawal from the ugliness of the world.”(Ellis 4) When Gene is visiting Leper, he hears all the awful things about the war. Finny has pushed all the awful thing of the world away so Gene wants to be where its “safe”. Finny creates an illusion of peace to make everything seem better, and so he will not have to look at the real world. He pulls Gene, as well as other students of the school, into this peace. By creating this illusion, he makes everyone forget about the terrible things in the world. Finny does not have to believe them true if others do not. Phineas enables his denial with this new world, separate from the horrible

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