A Separate Peace

Why does Finny love winter?

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As Gene and Finny make their way over patches of ice to their first class, Finny remarks that winter loves him; "he knows this, he says, because he loves winter, and it must return his affection."

Finny seems to harbor a genuine love for Gene, and, because he loves his friend, it doesn’t occur to him that Gene might not love him back. As usual, he assumes that other people approach the world in the same way that he does. This attitude emerges clearly in his comments about winter: loving winter himself, he cannot conceive of the season harboring any enmity toward him, though Gene points out that winter is treacherous for someone on crutches. If one loves something enough, he insists, it must return that affection. One can argue that this assumption—that love is always reciprocated—is the foundation of his continued closeness with Gene.