The Outsiders

643 Words3 Pages
In the book, The Outsiders, written by S.E. Hinton, the premise of The Outsiders is of a power struggle between two social classes, the Greasers and the Socs. This fictional book focuses on hot-button issues of that time period through the journey of Ponyboy and how he navigated through these times. The aftermath and effects of tensions in the group and when said tensions boiled over in the two groups were also shown. The three topics addressed in the down-to-earth novel are rich versus poor, the power of friendship and what it means to be a hero. First of all, Ponyboy and his friends constantly need to defend themselves, because they are not rich like the Socs or they face embarrassment. For example, “Greasers can’t walk home too much or…show more content…
In one instance, “Us greasers usually stick together, but when we do fight among ourselves, it 's a fair fight between the two [...] Either way there’s not going to be any blood feud between our outfit and Shepard’s.” (pg. 29) This quote shows that even if they fight they will not keep any resentment towards the other. A gang of greasers will help out another greaser gang should the need arise. Also, “‘Come on, Johnny, we’re running away.’ Johnny asked no questions.” (51) Ponyboy and Johnny are so close that when Ponyboy asked Johnny to run away with him, Johnny said yes. A friendship is powerful when a friend will run away with another friend upon request. The power of friendship is evident through the interactions of the greasers. Through his experiences, Ponyboy and Johnny learn what it means to be a hero. In the text it states, “I snatched up another kid, hoping he didn 't bite, and dropped him without waiting too see if he landed okay or not.” (93) Ponyboy saves the local children from a fire. This is heroic because he did that without any regards to his health or safety. Moreover, “Johnny shoved me toward the window. ‘Get out!’” (93) This shows that Johnny has learned what it takes to be hero. He saved the children without any consideration for his health and safety, and he also saved Ponyboy for the cost of his own life. The two learn what it means to be a…show more content…
The three topics give a complete idea of the book by giving a realistic portrayal of the fight between rich and poor, showing the power of strong loyal friends and their friendships, and the ways one can be a hero, no matter the cost. This novel is well written and revolutionary in the concept of realistic fiction that it used. The strengths of the novel are the realistic portrayal of the problems kids faced at the time, the realistic language, and narrated without adult bias. The weaknesses of novel was the mildly confusing ending, the unnecessary killing of Dallas to add drama, and the slight cliffhanger with what happened to the characters in the
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