William Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar tragedy examines Julius Caesar’s decline and rise. He raises the Roman Empire to new heights, but not everyone is pleased with the results. Cassius and Brutus become concerned about the rise of authority, prompting them to begin planning assassination while enlisting the help of the aristocracies. Despite several warnings, Caesar is assassinated, forcing Caesar’s friends and Mark Antony to take vengeance on the conspirators, resulting in the fight to the death. On the other hand, in the novel, “a separate peace” the unpredictable world of male youth offers the backdrop for John Knowles captivating tale of peace, hate, war, and love. By sharing a room at Devon, Gene and Phineas form a multifaceted bond of friendship that lures out the good and worst characteristics of each teenager leading to a decisive betrayal of trust, violence, and confession. It was in summer before World War II. The author not only focuses on the distinctive voice to each of the characters but also to the personalities and mannerisms of the teachers and other boys surrounding them.
When we focus on Gene, we realize that the war is coming to hand. This is seen when he visited Leper and he recognizes that Leper has become harsh and cold about life. Upon being dismissed on mental issues, he comes into conclusion that no one could handle the actual nature of the war. Gene realizes that the war messes will not only be of the body and also the mind. There is a dramatic change to Brinker who has become rebellious and also had a change of clothes as compared to Leper. Brutus being a loyal friend to Julius Caesar is replaced by Cassius who convinces him to join the conspiracy. The bond of friendship between them starts to decline. The sign of the events gives Cassius the ability to influence others to agree with him which includes Brutus. As there are those who change, some other characters never change. Finny is like Gene as he never changes even when the unthinkable happens. He never lets anything change him as well as viewing the world as a perfect place.
Finny, Gene, and their friends struggle to define their identities. World War II identity crisis forces them to describe themselves first and prime about the war. Leper decides to enlist knowing well that military life contracts with his gentleness and nature are loving instincts. Finny rejects the war occur at all. However, the boys tried to define themselves against something to be men. Similarly, the characters confuse the public selves with their private selves through dehumanizing themselves into ruthless political engines. Brutus snubs his wife, Portia, who pleads him to disclose in her believing himself to be acting on the people’s will. Brutus forge the killing of Caesar in spite of their relationship by putting his devotions. He, therefore, decides to serve as the public desires and kills the Caesar who is the leader.
While the Tragedy of Julius Caesar focuses on betrayal, A Separate Peace centers on the theme of equality. In A Separate Peace, Finny and Gene are greatest friends having different outlooks and personalities. Finny trust Gene unconditionally despite knowing that gene is untrustworthy. Gene tries to hide his secret resentful toward Finny as a lot of his action be done with Finny in mind though it is not clear whether it is out of guilt. In the tragedy of Julius Caesar, most of the tribunes talk ill about their leader Caesar and plot against him similar to what Gene does to Finny. Caesar is like Finny who is envied by people and seen to be powerful beings. Gene resembles tribunes in Rome who does not want Caesar in power. Gene retains his ideas of rebellion to himself and keeps a smile on his face when he is around Finny the ruler.
Many characters undergo a transition in the novels. Initially, Brutus was a good man who followed the rules established. However, he defended Caesar from being killed and also spoke his thoughts when the matter was upsetting him. The theme of power is seen when Brutus joins to kill Caesar and appoints himself the head. However, he makes a decision about who the enterprise should recruit. Similarly, Gene is suspicious about anything that anyone does. He thinks that Finny is sabotaging his studies as he freaks about studying. Hence Gene wants to appear at the top in the class. Gene self-oriented is seen when he visits Finny because he broke his leg. Finally, Gene becomes selfless as he goes to visit the Leper and wants to make sure that he is alright. He also sees the action done by Finny to be genuine and wants to strengthen their friendship.
The two novels have the some similarities as well as differences though not been to the same extent. The theme of transition, power, and betrayal dominates the entire book creating a conducive twist to the thesis of the narratives. It also shows how close friends can end up being your worst enemies which may even lead to assassination. However, sometimes change is necessary for making things better. Some people change for the better while others change to worse.