1st April 2019
LA / The Outsiders Essay
How can a rough, mean and tough criminal have anything in common with a kind and thoughtful boy?
Two people can be very different, but also can be very similar. Ultimately, most people are more different than alike. This essay discusses how Johnny Cade and Dallas (Dally) Winston are more the same than different, and how being alike has an impact on their lives together. Within the book The Outsiders, a book written by Susan Eloise Hinton (S.E.), one can see why Johnny and Dally are very similar. Some may see them as completely different people because Johnny is quieter, and Dally is a very cocky and a talkative person. While they're both not the main character, both are very major characters in the novel. Johnny and Dally are two characters that are very different in terms of what they do on a daily basis but are more the same because:
It is important to realize that Johnny is very sensitive and is a person that doesn’t talk much because he has a difficult life at home. As written in the book: “If it hadn't been for the gang, Johnny would never have known what love and affection are.” (Ch.1). Ponyboy notes that they are the only family Johnny has. He needs his friends because his home life is so terrible. On the other hand, Dally is a person that can be very violent and hasty. As it says in the book “Dallas is the older friend of Ponyboy and his brothers. He is described as “tougher, colder, meaner” (Ch.1). This quote shows how Dally is someone that you don't want to mess with and is a tough ‘street-smart’ guy, unlike Johnny. Dally also spent three years “on the cold streets of New York” and was arrested at ten years old.
Building Upon the previous point that Johnny feels like he has no parents, one can see through this quote that he practically did not: "I think I like it better when the old man's hittin' me." Johnny sighed. "At least then I know he knows who I am. I walk in that house, and nobody says anything. I walk out, and nobody says anything. I stay away all night, and nobody notices. At least you got Soda. I ain't got nobody." (Ch.3). This quote shows how Johnny is unusual for a greaser, he’s sensitive and becomes even more after the socs jumped him. It also shows how his parents aren't caring and how Johnny's parents never gave him the love and affection he deserved as a kid. Johnny grew up not knowing what caring parents were like, the only way he found out was through the gang. On the other hand, Dally also dislikes his parents so much that he doesn’t even mention them much throughout the book. Dally mentions his father once when he’s explaining to Johnny and Ponyboy what life was back at home: “Shoot, my old man don't give a hang whether I'm in jail or dead in a car wreck or drunk in the gutter. That don't bother me none." (Ch. 6). Just like Johnny, Dally’s parents don't care about him and he doesn't care about them.
Although one may think these two characters are more different than similar, you can see through this quote from the book that Dally is just as sensitive and not all bad. "Johnny, I ain't mad at you. I just don't want you to get hurt. You don't know what a few months in jail can do to you. Oh, blast it, Johnny...you get hardened in jail. I don't want that to happen to you. Like it happened to me..." (Ch.6). This quote shows how Dally isn’t the mean and aggressive person we all thought he was. He’s somebody who looks very tough on the outside, but a completely different person on the inside. Dally also has a soft spot for Johnny and even risks his life saving him from the church fire.