The novel “The Outsiders” was written by Susan Eloise Hinton in 1965 and later published in 1967. Hinton was born in 1948 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. This means that she was in high school when she wrote this book. It is told in the first person by Ponyboy Curtis. This novel is in the coming-of-age literary period or otherwise known as “young adult” fiction. It is based on teenage problems.
In this novel, the town they live in is divided into two groups. The greasers are the poor kids. They oil their hair and wear leather jackets. The socials are the rich kids. They have nice cars and clothes. The greasers live on the east side of town, and the socs live on the west side of town. If you were a greaser, you didn’t go to the west side of town, but if you were social, you didn’t go to the east side of town. Ponyboy is a fourteen-year-old boy who lives with his older brothers, Sodapop and Darry. Darry is the oldest and works as a roofer. Sodapop is the middle child and works at a gas station. Darry is twenty years old, and Sodapop is sixteen years old. Ponyboy and Darry, even though they are brothers, hate each other. Ponyboy is a great student in school and gets A’s on everything. Their parents were killed in an automobile accident eight months before the story took place. Ponyboy’s oldest brother, Darry, has legal custody of him and the middle sibling, Sodapop. Ponyboy and his brothers are part of the greasers.
Johnny is a friend of Ponyboy’s, who is also a greaser. They met a couple of soc girls and later got attacked by the socs. Ponyboy was about to die in the fight, but Johnny stabs one of them, and the rest of the socs run away. After the fight ponyboy and Johnny run to the countryside and hide to escape the socs. They told their friend Dallas that they needed help. He was a greaser as well. Dallas gave them money and a gun and told them to find the church nearby and hide in it until he came to pick them up. They cut their hair and Ponyboy bleached him so the socs wouldn’t recognize them and attack. With the money, they bought some food and cigarettes. They later left with Dallas. They were on their way back to the church and had left flames on from the cigarettes, and the church caught on fire. Some local greasers were trapped in the building. Ponyboy and Johnny went inside and rescued them. Ponyboy and Johnny took them to a hospital to get help right away. Ponyboy, Dallas, and Johnny were injured from the flames as well and had to stay to recover.
Johnny didn’t recover as well as the others. He suffered from 3rd-degree burns. Johnny died shortly after. Johnny left a note for the nurses to give Ponyboy. It was a goodbye note. He also left the book that they were reading with the nurse to give to Ponyboy after he. Dallas couldn’t live without his best friend Johnny. He committed suicide by pointing a fake gun at the police who then shot and killed him. Later, the greasers and the socs decided that they were going to have a fight. They met up and formed in lines like they were at war. The greasers won the big fight. The police were going to press charges on Ponyboy because he killed one soc. He got freed from all charges and didn’t have to go to jail.
In conclusion, greasers and socs did not get along. Their whole town was divided over something as silly as wealth. They fought a lot, and some were injured to the point of death. The division is still going on in the present-day world. Everyone should get along whether you have money or not. People are people no matter what. They never learned that in this story, but they will never forget the lives that were lost due to the fights.