A Separate Peace Essay
It is key that one must get to know themselves in order to grow spiritually and mentally. This essay will cover the ideas and topics: Leper and his lack of self knowledge, Leper’s spontaneous decision making, Phineas’ lack of self knowledge, Phineas’ inability to adapt to new situations, Gene’s discovery of self knowledge, Genes acceptance of Finny’s death, and most importantly, how self knowledge is essential to personal growth.
Leper’s lack of self-knowledge results in his inability to successfully function in society. Not being aware of society’s tendency to pass judgment causes social alienation. The main clear reason the boys at Devon alienate Leper is because of his personality. He is a quiet, reserved, contemplative boy who doesn’t have any friends and is just different than everyone else therefore he is judged. Leper’s lack of self-knowledge and awareness that the boys are doing this to him results in him not successfully functioning in society. For example he has no friends, or anyone to talk to for that matter. Not only can lack of self knowledge cause social alienation, it also leads to irrational decision making. Leper, along with being socially alienated, also made an irrational decision of joining the war without thinking about it. Having a lack of self-knowledge is what most likely made him choose to enlist in the war. Just as alienation and irrational decision making occur because of lack of self-knowledge, a sudden realization about evil in the world causes psychological damage. Leper escapes from the war because the army is planning on giving him a section eight discharge for insanity. The reason he may have developed psychological damage is because he was no longer in Devon and his regular environment, but at the training camps where he was unable to successfully function in society so he started hallucinating and going insane. “The army has the perfect word for everything, did you ever think of that? …And the...
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