A Separate Peace

Essay by GjunderhillJunior High, 9th gradeB+, November 2014

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Grace Underhill

Mrs. Matone

English 9H-F

3 October 2013

In a Separate Peace, John Knowles suggests that Devon is a microcosm of the world at that time. a microcosm is a smaller version of a larger world. For example, John Knowles suggests this is through the boys jumping off the tree, which was sometimes used a form of training for the war. In addition, the boys at Devon have enemies just as there are in war. Finally, the ultimate goal in war is peace, which the boys search for throughout the book.

To begin with, jumping out of a high tree is a form of training for the upperclassmen, the seniors. Gene explains this type of training on page 15 as "The class above, seniors… were caught up in… a physical hardening regimen, which included jumping from this tree." In the beginning of the book Gene and Finny creates a club that members would jump from this tree every night, the Super Suicide Society of the Summer Session.

In this club, every night the members woud meet to jump out of the tree. To be on this club you had to jump from the tree and the leaders, Gene and Finny, would jump first. Also, Finny refers back to jumping out of the tree as a form of training when he was talking to Mr. Prud'homme on page 22 "The real reason, sir, was that we just had to jump out of that tree… We had to do that naturally… because we're all getting ready for the war."

Another way Devon is a microcosm is just like there are enemies in war, there are many enemies at Devon. These enemies aren't all between two different people, a multitude of them are between people and themselves. One example of...