The Outsiders – S. E. Hinton (1967)


The Outsiders is a coming-of-age novel by S. E. Hinton, first published in 1967 by Viking Press. Hinton was 15 when she started writing the novel but did most of the work when she was 16 and a junior in high school. Hinton was 18 when the book was published. The book details the conflict between two rival gangs divided by their socioeconomic status: the working-class ‘greasers‘ and the upper-class ‘Socs’ (pronounced /ˈsʃɪz/—short for Socials). The story is told in first-person perspective by teenaged protagonist Ponyboy Curtis. The story in the book takes place in Tulsa, Oklahoma, in 1965, but this is never explicitly stated in the book. A film adaptation was produced in 1983, and a little-known short-lived television series appeared in 1990, picking up where the movie left off. A stage adaptation was written by Christopher Sergel and published in 1990. Ponyboy Curtis, a teenaged member of a loose gang of ‘greasers’, is leaving a movie theater when he is jumped by ‘Socs’, the greasers’ rival gang. Several greasers, including Ponyboy’s two older brothers—the paternal Darry and the popular Sodapop—come to his rescue. The next night, Ponyboy and two greaser friends, the hardened Dally and the quiet Johnny, meet Cherry and Marcia, a pair of Soc girls, at a drive-in movie theater. Cherry spurns Dally’s rude advances, but Ponyboy ends up speaking civilly with Cherry, emotionally connecting with a Soc for the first time in his life. Afterward, Ponyboy, Johnny, and their wisecracking friend Two-Bit begin to walk Cherry and Marcia home, when they are stopped by Cherry’s boyfriend Bob, who badly beat up Johnny a few months back. Bob and the greasers exchange taunts, but Cherry prevents a fight by willingly leaving with Bob. Ponyboy gets home at two in the morning, enraging Darry until he suddenly slaps Ponyboy. Pony runs out the door and meets up with Johnny, expressing his anger at Darry’s increasing coldness in the wake of his parents’ recent deaths in a car crash. … Terrified as to what to do next, Ponyboy and Johnny rush to find Dally, who gives them money and a loaded gun, directing them to hide in an abandoned church in Windrixville. During their stay there, Pony cuts and dyes his hair as a disguise, reads Gone with the Wind to Johnny, and, upon viewing a beautiful sunrise, recites the poem ‘Nothing Gold Can Stay‘ by Robert Frost. …”
Wikipedia
NY Times – Why ‘The Outsiders’ Lives On: A Teenage Novel Turns 50
12 Fascinating Facts About S. E. Hinton’s The Outsiders, 12 Facts About The Outsiders That Will Stay Gold
[PDF] The Outsiders


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