Wars are cruel, ruthless, and catastrophic. Lives are destroyed, and families are ripped apart. People are turned against each other, and seek to extinguish one another. “Of the past 3,400 years, humans have been entirely at peace for 268 of them, or just 8 percent of recorded history” (Chris Hedges, New York Times). In John Knowles, A Separate Peace, Gene Forrester, a foolish teenager, experiences his own war; a clash between friendship and insecurities. Gene goes back fifteen years later during World War II to his old boarding school in New Hampshire, the Devon School, and uncovers his past. The battle Gene fought in caused his friendship with Phineas, also known as Finny, to be torn apart. Gene’s war with himself, caused
During the late 1930’s and early to mid1940’s, Allies were fighting the axis powers in WW2. Along with the high tensions amongst countries, there was also high tension amongst civilian lives. John Knowles’ A Separate Peace clearly shows the tension within a friendship similar to that of Britain’s and Germany’s relationship. Through Allegory, John Knowles shows the tension within two friends that eventually leads to their inevitable demise. The symbolic items in the book are: Gene, the main character, Finny, the deuteragonist, and Finny’s pink shirt.
War. It divides to conquer? Ending in triumph, or does it leave us broken? Who’s to say, it can do both. It all depends on the war itself. War is about principles. It can be used to end injustice, tyranny, or both. It can band people together to form a bond that is unbreakable, all fighting for the same cause. But that bond can have a high price. War kills soldiers, tearing them from family; it kills innocent people, just trying to survive. People are brutal, whether it be a harsh commander with deathly penalties, or even a rude soldier, demanding supplies or a roof from a civilian. Many think war is not the only way, there can be a peaceful solution. Two such people are the authors of My Brother Sam is Dead, James and Christopher Collier. They show this belief through the life of Tim Meeker, who struggles to decide who to side with, his brother, Sam, or his father. The ironic and horrible deaths of Jerry, Ned, and his own brother, Sam, eventually force Tim to choose neutrality.
Rifles for Watie written by Harold Keith is a novel that is prominently expressing unity after times of tragedy and war in a touching way that shows understanding. The topic and message of the novel is to show how war is a tragedy but you can always be understanding of the opposing side, as well as become united again. The authors topic can be shown through what is written in the novel and by the experiences of the main character Jeff. What else??
In John Knowles’s A Separate Peace, the students of Devon’s perception of reality changes from peacetime to wartime. Phineas’s perception changes as he refuses to accept any part of reality that he does not agree with, but events force him to accept it anyway. Gene views Phineas as a jealous competitor, but he comes to a realization about Phineas’s real nature. Leper and Brinker both view the war as a sort of opportunity. However, they both resent the war when they face it.
Pessimism and sorrow cohesive with war and malice lie in deception to create a ruse for innocent individuals. A Separate Peace is a pessimistic novel due its involvement with war, malice, and sorrow. This is due to its revolution around World War II, Gene’s malice towards Finny, and a murder caused by an unlikely source.
“It is well that war is so terrible-- otherwise we would grow too fond of it,” were the words once said by the Confederate General, Robert E. Lee. Indeed, even opposing nations can agree that war is full of destruction and devastation. Despite this, there are those who believe that war is glorious. Too often, movies and literature depict war as a virtuous endeavor. Young men are often told during war that they should become a soldier, for honor and glory. As a result, many young men are pressured into joining the military, or even join willingly, due to this over glorification. All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque and “Dulce et Decorum Est” by Wilfred Owen discuss this very topic. Quite similar works, both feature ex-soldiers as their authors.
Everyone has to fight a battle, whether that’s internally, externally, or both. Many people fight internal wars, and have scars similar to those on the outside. Internal battles can sometimes be overlooked, since the wounds aren’t visible to those around them, but sometimes these wounds can be deeper on the inside than they are on the outside. The book A Separate Peace touches on the struggles of internal and external wars and the toll they take on the human mind. The universal theme of internal war is predominant in A Separate Peace, and affects not only every character in the book, but everyone reading as well.
In A Separate Peace John Knowles makes a compelling story about two teenagers, Gene and Phineas, living life through war. They were best of friends at their high school Devon and they brought out the worst and the best in each other, yet they both added something more important to humanity during a time where friendships and humanity were betrayed by war. Gene took wrong ways in his friendship with Phineas and learned in a difficult way that there was no harsh competition between them. Phineas not believing in war needed someone that could understand what madness they were living in.
War is something that, at this point in history, can be arguably deemed as part of the human condition. For whatever reason, it appears that humans are destined not to get along and that violent conflict is the preferred method of solving issues that arise. Whether it be fighting for the love of Helen of Troy or espousing the likes of God and Allah as a justification, war is one thing that time has yet to see the end of. That being said, it comes as no surprise that academics, scientists, and philosophers alike have taken to attempting to understand why wars happen. A controversial and somewhat debated topic is the concept of the Just War Principles. These principles attempt to understand and perhaps explain the rationale behind why war is
War is one of the few things that seems to prevail throughout the entirety of human history, from the battle of Kadesh in 15 BC all the way up to present day. While horrible, it has been a central focal point of many historical events, and most claim that war is unavoidable. In T.H. White’s The Once and Future King, however, war is seen as completely unnatural. This is clearly seen in one of Wort’s lessons, where White’s feelings of anti-war are clearly displayed. Using tone and diction, White is able to convey his message of how war is not a natural force of nature.
When we remember novels and plays throughout time, it is not the minute details or even the entire plot that we manage to keep in our minds. It is the characters, the complex, intriguing people whose lives, thoughts, and hopes are usually closer to home than not. When one thinks of To Kill a Mockingbird, he or she thinks of Atticus; it’s not the story but the eponymous man himself that comes to mind when thinking of The Great Gatsby. The only piece of a novel its reader will keep in his or her memory is often the protagonist, and so therefore these characters are the most well-rounded and most interesting. But what about the minor characters? Do authors devote so much time to their heroes that they fail their sidekicks? Joseph Heller, the author
The war is like a cancer, spreading a lot of death. But according longtime Scientific American writer John Horgan (2014) the `war and cancer differ in at least one crucial way: whereas cancer is a stubborn aspect of nature, war is our creation`. As long as there is more than one person, there is more than one opinion and a different understanding of how things should go. It is just of matter of time when the disagreement and conflict may break out. When we look back to the history, for example last four centuries every age has had its own big war, beginning with 17th century and Thirty years’ war and ending with 20th century and WW I and WW II. However, modern society has become more humane and most attempts to solve conflicts are political
Private Peaceful, a historical fiction novel written by Michael Morpurgo, is a novel about powerless people versus powerful people fighting for injustice. The story is set in the battlefront of World War One and focuses on the lifestyle of two brothers, Charlie and Tommo. In this novel, the author, Morpurgo, gives the readers the message that the rich and the powerful victimize the poor and the weak.
War obliterates not only the minds and bodies of soldiers involved, but a multitude of aspects of the societies from whence they came. It is incredibly naive to think that such battles that took place during the great wars, or any other large conflict, could only limit their destruction to the grounds on which they took place. Works such as A Tale of Two Cities, All Quiet on the Western Front, and The Book Thief, cannot emphasise this scale of devastation that war is able to achieve to a greater extent.