Stereotypes In The Outsiders

876 Words 4 Pages
Identity formation and point of view is affected by stereotypes and life circumstances. In S.E. Hinton’s “The Outsiders” circumstances and stereotypes makes the characters struggle with who they are. The Outsiders is told from the point of view of Ponyboy. Ponyboy is golden and doesn’t care for stereotypes and through him we see how the other characters are affected by those stereotypes. The characters’ identity formations are delayed by stereotypes; greasers are seen as dirty, low life hoodlums, and Socs are seen as rich kids with all the brakes. The life experiences of the characters are explored throughout The Outsiders.
Dally and Johnny are two characters that show how their experiences and greaser stereotypes shape them throughout the
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Darry, a twenty year old older brother to 17 year old Sodapop and 14 year old Ponyboy had to become the parent suddenly after their parents death. His true identity had been a playful young man. But then was forced to become more mature and act stricter and older and become a different figure to his brothers. Darry at one point let’s his brothers eat cake for breakfast: “We didn’t really have to twist his arm; Darry loves chocolate cake as much as we do” pg 105 Hinton shows us that he’s still the young playful Brother at times but still has a new role to play.
Ponyboy however has always been different from the other characters. He didn't completely care for stereotypes, he was more “golden”. He knew his identity without even knowing it. Pg 45 ”I pulled her to one side. I couldn’t use this, dropping the pop bottle. I couldn’t ever cut anyone…” Hinton shows us that with every event that had happened to Ponyboy it made his identity stronger. Pg 171 Two-bit says “you really would have used that bottle, wouldn’t you” Ponyboy responds by saying “I guess so”. He continues to then pick up the broken glass showing he’s still golden, but he's matured.

S.E. Hinton’s The Outsiders explores identity from the point of view of Ponyboy. Thru Ponyboy we see how the greasers become who they are and struggle with their identities as young men.Our personalities are influenced by many things. Stereotypes and circumstances are factors that can change and shape

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