A Separate Peace: Final Essay

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A Separate Peace: Final Essay

Throughout the story A Separate Peace, Gene’s change is due to his obsession over Phineas. Because Finny saves Gene’s life, he developed special feelings for him. After that, Gene tries extra hard to be like Finny. Although Gene feels as if he has complete and utter control over Finny, he doesn’t. But by the end of the story, Gene’s feelings toward Finny reverse themselves. Gene’s obsession with Phineas takes a toll on him to the point that he can no longer handle it.

First, Finny’s definition of friendship is what initially draws Gene in. Finny always seemed to have Gene’s back in a time of need, and Gene felt a sense of protection from that. For instance, after slipping on the tree limb and being saved from a broken leg by Finny, Gene says with relief, “Finny had practically saved my life.” (p.32) To Finny, saving Gene from falling out of the tree was just one of the situations where he was being a good friend, but to Gene it meant much more. Gene is extremely appreciative towards what Finny does for him, and is always looking for ways to return the favor. Although Finny sees his relationship with Gene one way, I feel as if Gene has different view on it.

Secondly, Gene begins to try and be more like Finny as the story continues on. Finny’s ability of being good at everything so naturally gives Gene the idea that he has to be just like him, even when it comes to his appearance. After Gene found out that Finny shattered his leg from “falling” out of the tree, Gene felt extremely guilty and uncomfortable. One night while getting dressed alone in their room for dinner, Gene decided to put on Finny’s clothes. As he dressed himself, he said, “I never forgot, and that evening I put on his cordovan shoes, his pants, and looked for and finally found his pink shirt, neatly laundered in a drawer.” (62) This quote proves that Gene’s obsession with Phineas reaches a whole new level. I’m sure if Finny found out that Gene was trying on...
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