Thesis Statements For A Separate Peace

Thesis Statements For A Separate Peace-17
But Gene's sudden recognition that Finny does not want him to fail proves even more devastating.If Finny is simply being Finny in his free, careless ways, then Gene has lost the meaning of his resentment, the energy that has been fueling his drive to succeed despite his enemy's plotting.The realization that Finny is not acting as a rival or an enemy, but simply as himself, makes Gene feel insignificant.

But Gene's sudden recognition that Finny does not want him to fail proves even more devastating.If Finny is simply being Finny in his free, careless ways, then Gene has lost the meaning of his resentment, the energy that has been fueling his drive to succeed despite his enemy's plotting.The realization that Finny is not acting as a rival or an enemy, but simply as himself, makes Gene feel insignificant.

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Gene knows what he did, and he knows that he is guilty.Significantly, in describing his actions on the limb, Gene insists not that he bent his knees, but that his knees bent, as if his body were not under his control.Again, Gene takes shelter in a childish, self-centered defense.With the destruction of the threat, Gene's view of the world, and of himself, is restored.The child's self-image of himself as the center of the world is recreated.Finny breaks through Gene's shield of conformity, daring him to experience the world more directly, by breaking rules and creating new traditions.With Finny, Gene explores a life unbounded by familiar routines imposed by adults.This "all or nothing" thinking, childish in its simplicity, leads Gene to resent Finny and ultimately causes the violent outbreak that destroys a life.Out of Gene's discomfort arises a dark suspicion: Finny is deliberately drawing Gene away from his studies in order to make him fail. If Gene is trying to obey the rules in order to win approval — the only validation he really recognizes — then anyone who encourages him to disobey, or follow other rules, must wish him harm. In his own defense, Gene hides his resentment and lets his (seemingly justified) anger burn within him while he single-mindedly pursues his goal to become the best student and so show up Finny.But faced with this self-knowledge, Gene rejects it, defensively retreating into his habitual conformity, his comforting sense of himself as an obedient boy.What starts out as a confession and an apology to Finny — a mark of true growth into adulthood and responsibility — quickly becomes an angry rationalization, an attack on Finny that constitutes a second injury.

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