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The jealousy of gene in the novel a separate peace by john knowles

Can you think of examples of how Gene was envious of Finny in A Separate Peace by John Knowles?

It is true that Finny is just one of those guys that everyone knows and is attracted to because he is innately good, despite his constant rule-breaking. He is someone who is good at everything, including getting out of trouble. It is not surprising, then, that Gene sometimes envies Finny.

It is not surprising, then, that Gene sometimes envies Finny; nor is it surprising that often that envy becomes jealousy and turns eventually into resentment.

Finny nearly always manages to escape punishment for breaking the rules, and Gene who is innately a rule-follower envies that. I was beginning to see that Phineas could get away with anything. I couldn't help envying him that a little, which was perfectly normal. There was no harm in envying even your best friend a little.

  • We'll occasionally send you account related and promo emails;
  • I could not escape a feeling that this was my own funeral, and you do not cry in that case;
  • But there was no mistaking the shield of remoteness in his face and voice;
  • Perhaps for that reason his accomplishment took root in my mind and grew rapidly in the darkness where I was forced to hide it;
  • The Suicide Society continued to meet every evening, and I continued to attend, because I didn't want Finny to understand me as I understood him.

Eventually, though, Gene's envy begins to grow into an animosity, and there comes a time when Gene begins to hope that Finny gets caught and presumably punished for his often outrageous lies.

This time he wasn't going to get away with it.

I could feel myself becoming unexpectedly excited at that. When Finny breaks a school swimming record without any training and then does not want anyone to know, Gene finds it hard to believe that Finny's motives are pure, probably because he knows his own heart is not as pure.

  • But there was no mistaking the shield of remoteness in his face and voice;
  • I had told him;
  • In the beginning of the story, Gene was jealous of his best friend;
  • These things all begin to fester and grow in Gene's mind, and soon he has moved from envy to jealousy and finally to resentment;
  • It is not surprising, then, that Gene sometimes envies Finny;...

Was he trying to impress me or something? When he had broken a school record without a day of practice? I knew he was serious about it, so I didn't tell anybody. Perhaps for that reason his accomplishment took root in my mind and grew rapidly in the darkness where I was forced to hide it. These things all begin to fester and grow in Gene's mind, and soon he has moved from envy to jealousy and finally to resentment.

It is not true, but Gene believes it. Finny just assumes that Gene will go with him to the tree, and Gene says, But examinations were at hand. I wasn't as ready for them as I wanted to be. The Suicide Society continued to meet every evening, and I continued to attend, because I didn't want Finny to understand me as I understood him.

A Separate Peace

Ultimately, of course, this internal resentment turns to bitterness for just one moment, and Gene jounces the tree limb, sending Finny to the ground. What is apparent in this relationship is that Gene ascribes all of his own suspicions, enviousness, jealousy, and resentment to Finny, assuming Finny thinks and feels as Gene does.

In fact, however, the two boys are nothing alike and Gene misreads everything about Finny.