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A Separate Peace 4 Essay

813 words - 4 pages

The Mind Murders the Body By Sina Samie "Adolescent friendships are of the most complex companionships due to the suppressed feelings of contempt one child may feel toward another." The deterioration of the complex friendship of Gene and Phineas is brought about in John Knowles' A Separate Peace by the combination of their envy and denial. Finny and Gene begin their summer of 1942 with the illusion of a great companionship. Gene's paranoia and envy disrupt the relationship between him and Finny. As their friendship disintegrates, Finny and Gene deny that the problems in their alliance even exist, which in turn leads to a tragic catastrophe.Gene and Finny initiate their summer of 1942 with ...view middle of the document...

" Gene sees how everyone loves Phineas, and that makes him feel unworthy.As Gene's envy and paranoia take over him, he is drawn farther from the truth that lies within his brotherhood with Phineas. When Gene realizes that his only advantage over Finny is his mind, he begins competing with Finny. His paranoia leads him to believe that Phineas has "deliberately set out to wreck [his] studies." Finny's only objective is to have fun with his best friend, however Gene sees it as Phineas' attempt to keep him from studying for his examinations. As Gene tries to unravel Finny's fiendish scheme, he isolates himself from what his friendship is about. He feels as if he "[doesn't] know Finny at all;" as if the Finny he had loved months ago is not the same as the Finny he detests now. Gene paranoia and jealousy finally drive him to injure Finny by jouncing the limb where he is standing. Gene later denies that he has anything to do with the accident, stating that it is the "first clumsy action [he] had ever seen [Finny] make." The chaos between Gene and Finny inevitably constitutes a full-scale war; both sides recognizing that there is an immense conflict, but neither willing to admit it. Their...

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