Compare chapter 6 to other chapters in The Outsiders.

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This is a pivotal chapter in the book as the greaser stereotype gets flipped contrary to everyone's expectations.

Greasers are known for being detached, careless, and tough. Yet when Johnny and Ponyboy realize that a church is on fire and they are likely to blame, they don't hesitate to rush...

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This is a pivotal chapter in the book as the greaser stereotype gets flipped contrary to everyone's expectations.

Greasers are known for being detached, careless, and tough. Yet when Johnny and Ponyboy realize that a church is on fire and they are likely to blame, they don't hesitate to rush toward it when they hear children's voices inside. Johnny, who has lived a life of abuse and defeat, rises to the challenge unlike he has been able to do in his life thus far:

I caught one quick look at his [Johnny's] face; it was red marked from falling embers and sweat streaked, but he grinned at me. He wasn't scared either. That was the only time I can think of when I saw him without that defeated, suspicious look in his eyes. He looked like he was having the time of his life.

No one has ever expected Johnny to act bravely. Life has never given him a chance to do so. But here he is, rising to the unexpected challenge along with Pony.

Johnny is badly injured in the fire, getting every single kid out of harm's way before being hit by a large piece of falling timber. He has sacrificed his own well-being to save a group of young kids. This isn't what society would have expected of him.

Jerry tells Pony that he and Johnny are heroes. This is all a bit surreal to Pony as he waits in the hospital for news about his friend.

This chapter also shows some healing in the relationship between Pony and his oldest brother, Darry. At the hospital, the two show hope of reconciliation as they realize all they could have lost—and the challenges they still have to face together.

This chapter reflects varying, important changes in the ways characters are perceived, both within the greaser group and by society at large.

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