In "The Outsiders", how did S.E. Hinton foreshadow that the church would catch fire?(There were two ways.)

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dswain001 | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Assistant Educator

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S.E. Hinton uses a lot of foreshadowing throughout the novel "The Outsiders". In chapter 3, Ponyboy decides to run away from home after Darry slaps him. Ponyboy flees the house and runs to the vacant lot where he has left Johnny a short time before. The two share a cigarette and talk. Ponyboy briefly mentions that he:

"wonderd what it would be like to be inside of a burning ember."

This is an odd statement, but the reader must keep in mind that Hinton is giving us a peek into what is to come later on in the story.

The second example of foreshadowing comes in Chapter 4 when the boys first arrive at the church on, Ponyboy states that even though churches usually are calming places, this particular church gave him an eerie feeling. He flashes back to the last few times he had gone to church and actually enjoyed the services. Still, this church makes Ponyboy uneasy from the very beginning.

This type of foreshadowing by Hinton makes it easy for readers to infer that this church is going to play a big role in the progression of this story.

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