Gene Forrester In The Rye And A Separate Peace

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The novels we have read this year have all connected with themes and characters. I believe the biggest connection for this year was the connection between Gene Forrester from A Separate Peace by John Knowles and Holden Caulfield from The Catcher In The Rye. Both of these boys are looking for a way to find themselves. They need to accept their past and forgive themselves, and they need to accept who they are and who they are becoming. The boys struggle with the fact they are growing up and have to enter the scary world, they must find a way to find their place in the world. Gene and Holden are similar because they both face internal conflicts with their past, growing up, and finding their place in the world,
Gene and Holden are weighed down
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Both of them “fall,” so to speak, into the adult world and experience the reality and darkness that is out there. They experience the pain, suffering, and phoniness of the world outside their bubble. Gene realizes the horror after he goes and visits his friend, Leper, after Leper comes back from war. Seeing how the adult world turns Leper “psycho,” Gene is scared of what’s out there and doesn’t want to leave his childhood and grow up. Holden is also scared of becoming an adult. “ I keep picturing all these little kids playing some game in this big field of rye and all. Thousands of little kids and nobody’s around - nobody big, I mean- except me and I 'm standing on the edge of some crazy cliff. What I have to do to catch everybody if they start to go over the cliff I mean if they 're running and they don 't look where they 're going I have to come out from somewhere and catch them that 's all I do all day I just be the catcher in the rye and all…”(Salinger 173). Holden doesn’t want to grow up, and he doesn’t want anyone else to grow up. Holden wants everyone to stay young and innocent, including himself, even though he knows the can’t and he knows that he is already grown up himself. Facing the fact that they have to grow up and live in the real world is a real struggle for both Gene and Holden because they know the horrors that they are yet to face so they both try to hold it off as long as
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