A Separate Peace is Here to Stay

Addressing the Debate

Why is it Challenged?

A Separate Peace, by John Knowles, has been a challenged book ever since it was published, but for no good reason. It has some mild language, but that is essentially the extent of the issue, and by the time ours kids read this book in highscool, there is no question that they will have already been exposed to this language. That is just a part of growing up. With this being the case, parents are most likely using the mild language excuse because of some other reasons. See The Real Reason as to Why it's Challenged in the next section for these reasons.

The Real Reason as to Why it's Challenged

People are parnoid. Plain and simple. The real reason it is banned is because it suggests that the world is a hostile place and that everyone at some point in their life creates an enemy for themselves, so over protective parents are upset because of the inner hate and jealousy that is suggested to be in the majority of people. Also, throughout the novel, a main character (Gene) shows a special attachment to another character of the same sex (Phineas), and some people are trying to claim that Gene is gay because of said attachment. However, this claim is completely inaccurate and unsupported because the sexuality of the boys is never stated throughout the novel and no sexual or provocative interactions take place between the two, or any other characters for that matter.

What A Separate Peace Really is

A Separate Peace is not some dirty novel that our kids should be forbidden to read. It is like no other novel, making it a separate piece entirely (pun intended), that shows the inevitable transformation that a boy must go through to be a man, while also showing true friendship along with the struggles and controversies that come along with the bond. It is in no way a 3rd grade book, but with our highschoolers on the verge of adulthood, it could be a very enlightening book.