A Separate Peace 2 Essay

This essay has a total of 416 words and 2 pages.

A Separate Peace 2

A person often gains new insight as a result of a specific incident that he or she
experiences. This point is clearly demonstrated in the novel A Separate Peace by John
Knowles. Gene learns the profound meaning of friendship when he pushes Phineas out of the
tree. When he learns that Phineas has this unconditional love for him, he becomes very
guilty for what he has done. The author foreshadows many events from the beginning of the

When Gene pushes Phineas out of the tree in a burst of jealous rage, he gains this
profound meaning of friendship. Even after the incident, Phineas doesn't blame Gene for
pushing him out of the tree. Instead, Phineas chooses to believe that a gust of wind had
jostled the branch causing his fall. This is the story that he tells people and he
believes himself. When other students get suspicious of what really happened, they hold a
mock trial in attempts to find the truth. Phineas continues to lie for his friend and
conjures an elaborate story to clear Gene's name. This evidently shows that Phineas would
much rather lie to others and to himself, to protect the good name of Gene.

When Gene sees that Phineas would much rather lie for him, than to believe it himself, he
becomes extremely guilty for his actions. A moment, which occurred during those few
seconds, has now caused him to see the pain he has inflicted on Phineas and how much
Phineas really cares for him. This guilt continues to come out during novel until Phineas'
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