A Separate Peace Questions and Answers
by John Knowles

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What are some specific allusions in A Separate Peace?

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An allusion is a literary device that makes a brief and generally indirect reference to a person, place, or significant historical event. An allusion shouldn't describe its reference in detail because it assumes that a reader has enough knowledge to identify the reference and understand its importance.

A Separate Peace contains multiple allusions throughout the text. Already in chapter one, Knowles is dropping allusions in front of readers. Gene is telling his readers about the summer session differences between the juniors and seniors. The seniors are being prepped for the draft and the war, while Gene and his friends are being subjected to reading Virgil. The final paragraph of this same chapter references Thomas Hardy and tells readers that Finny is amused by the names of specific characters.

. . . amused that there should be people named Gabriel Oak and Bathsheba Everdene.

Chapter 9 has an allusion to one of the various assassination attempts against Hitler. While readers can't possibly...

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