In chapter 1, through the use of stereotypes, the author reveals the theme “identity”. When Ponyboy says, “Nobody in our gang digs movies and books like I do” (Hinton 2). This quote reveals identity through stereotypes since it describes that Ponyboy is not like everyone else in his gang. Through the story, we have learned that greasers are rough and reckless, but with this quote, the author reveals that Ponyboy is otherwise. This quote helps us see how from the beginning Ponyboy doesn't fit in a greaser. In conclusion, this quote helps the reader see how Ponyboy is different from the gang.
SE Hinton's use of stereotypes reveals the theme of identity. Before Ponyboy cuts his hair he says, “It was my pride, long and silky just like Soda’s only redder” (Hinton 61). This quote shows how SE Hinton shows the theme of identity through stereotypes since in the quote is shows how ponyboy is very focused on his hair since it represents him as a greaser. One of the characteristics of being a greaser is their hair, and this is what this quote shows. Stereotypes play a huge part in this novel, especially to develop themes like identity, and with this quote, we can infer a part of Ponyboys identity.
The author uses character development which brings up the theme of “identity”. “How can I take it? Dally is tougher than I am. Why can I take it when Dally can’t” (Hinton 152). In this quote the author uses character development since through the story SE Hinton has described Dally as one of the roughest coming from New York and other things, but with this quote, we have seen that he is not so tough emotionally when it comes to Johnny. So Ponyboy feels angry that he could take Johnny's death. Since he is not the toughest in the gang, this shows a change in identity. Ponyboys character is not rough and reckless but understanding and caring, so Dally not being able to take Johnny's death makes him jealous in a way.
Brotherhood reveals the theme “identity”. Before the rumble, Ponyboy says “ Soda fought for fun, Steve for hatred, Darry for pride and Two-bit for conformity. Why do I fight? I thought and couldn't think of a good reason “ (Hinton 117). This quote reveals identity through the theme “brotherhood” since being a greaser means being in this small group in which you all get to know each other very good. SE Hinton reveals identity since everyone in the gang has a reason to fight except Ponyboy so he may feel left out, and this creates doubt in Ponyboy about his identity. In conclusion, Ponyboy is realizing that he doesn't need to fight, but he still wants too because he is very focused on being a greaser.
The allusion of the poem “Nothing Gold Can Stay” brings up the theme “identity”.Johnny says to Ponyboy before dying ‘ Like the way you dig sunsets, Pony. That's gold. Keep that way it's a good way to be [...] And don't be so bugged over being a greaser. You still have a lot of time to make yourself be what you want” (Hinton 178). This quote reveals identity through the allusion of the poem ‘Nothing Gold Can Stay” since Johnny says to Ponyboy that it’s fine if he doesn't like being a greaser he will have lots of time for himself later. Ponyboy is too focused on being a greaser he does not have any time to be what he wants to be. I think that Ponyboy is trying too hard to be someone that he is not, and all because he is part of a gang. So, in conclusion, Ponyboy does not have any time for himself because he is too focused on being someone else.
Character development in the outsiders brings up the theme of “identity”. “Ponyboy listen don't get tough, you’re not like the rest of us and don't try to be [...] Get smart and nothing can touch you” (Hinton 149). This quote shows the theme of identity through character development since through the story we have seen that Two-Bit cares about Ponyboy but he does not show it so much, but at the end of the book character development allows Two-Bit to show us another perspective of identity. Ponyboy by trying to be a greaser Ponyboy is hurting himself, and the gang realizes that. This quote is very emotional especially coming from Two-Bit which is always goofing around. So if Two-Bit says that he really means it since I believe that he wants the best for Ponyboy. In conclusion, the gang wants the best for Ponyboy even if it means not being a greaser.