Importance Of Ibitence In The Novel 'A Separate Peace' By John Knowles

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It is human nature to want what one cannot or should not have. Greed and jealousy have the ability to drive people to do extreme and unnecessary actions to receive what they pine over. It can change people and thrust them, quickly, into a different life. In the novel, A Separate Peace by John Knowles, Gene succumbs to temptation and envy- which ultimately pushes him into maturity and changes his life forever. He experiences seducement when he is envious of all of Finny’s attributes then a loss of innocence when he makes Finny fall from the tree and has to deal with the consequences of his actions. Gene’s journey matches that of Adam and Eve in the Tree of Knowledge. Adam and Eve experience enticement to eat the Forbidden Fruit which sequently …show more content…
Adam and Eve were “free to eat from any tree in the garden; but [they] must not eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil” (Genesis 2:16-17). In the beginning, they were completely fine with obeying these laws. However, just as Gene was enticed to hurt Finny, Adam and Eve were drawn to eat from the Forbidden Fruit. They were tempted by the devil in serpent form. The serpent informs Adam and Eve that God did not want them to eat the fruit because “when [they] eat from it [their] eyes will be open, and [they] will be like God, knowing good and evil” (Genesis 3:5). The serpent was tantalizing them with the possibility of being God. Adam and Eve are seen here to be almost envious of God; they long to break his rules so they could become Him. In A Separate Peace, Gene experiences the same emotions concerning Finny. Gene becomes overwhelmed with envy for Finny because of his charisma when getting out of trouble and his athletic skill. When Finny avoids trouble, instead of being excited or content for Finny he would feel “a sudden stab of disappointment” (Knowles 28). Gene’s emotions give the reader a clue to how envious of Finny, Gene really is. Gene yearns to become Finny just as Adam and Eve wanted to become God. He wishes that he had all of the attributes that Finny does. Gene, because of his greed …show more content…
Gene, in A Separate Peace, was changed forever when he made Finny fall out of the tree. After hurting Finny Gene had to spend the rest of his life dealing with the guilt associated with his actions. The temptation and envy Gene felt changed his life. Adam and Eve gave into enticement when they ate the forbidden fruit. They changed the entire world because of their decisions- just as Gene changed his entire world. Greed changed them to a point where they could never turn back. They ruined what they loved the most in the world. It is human nature to want more than what one has and A Separate Peace and the story of The Tree of Knowledge reveals this

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