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In John Knowles's A Separate Peace, how can you tell that Gene is jealous of Finny's...

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user7494389 | eNotes Newbie

Posted April 9, 2013 at 7:32 PM via web

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In John Knowles's A Separate Peace, how can you tell that Gene is jealous of Finny's skill at blitzball?

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tinicraw | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

Posted April 15, 2013 at 5:25 PM (Answer #1)

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The best way to discover Gene's jealous feelings is not what he says to Finny, necessarily, but how he describes scenes that involve Phineas being athletic or creative; usually, he is both. Chapter three is where Finny comes up with an athletic and creative idea called "blitzball." Gene comments that Phineas is the type of charismatic person who "was always being watch, like the weather." This analogy not only places Phineas in the center for attention during a time when teenagers want to be popular, but it also alludes to the number of people who like him. Another way Gene shows his jealousy is within the tag lines associated with Phineas. For example, when Finny starts the game, Gene feels like he's being ordered around: "'Well, run!' ordered Finny" (37). Finally, since Gene isn't as athletic as Phineas, he mentions "I never saw him tired, never really winded, never overcharged and never restless," (39) which is probably how Gene felt many times.

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