How is Darry described as a leader in The Outsiders?

Darry can be described as a good leader. Using the skills he's learned from keeping his family together, he acts like a kind of stern father figure to the other members of the Greaser gang. A highly disciplined young man, he demands the same level of self-discipline from his gang subordinates. His expectations sometimes leads to conflict with them, as in the case of him and Ponyboy.

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Darry is a young man who's had to grow up very quickly. Orphaned from an early age, he had to step up to the plate and take care of his family. Ever since his parents were killed, Darry sacrificed his own personal life for the sake of his family. He...

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Darry is a young man who's had to grow up very quickly. Orphaned from an early age, he had to step up to the plate and take care of his family. Ever since his parents were killed, Darry sacrificed his own personal life for the sake of his family. He started taking on two jobs long before he left school, and yet was somehow able to keep up with his schoolwork.

Darry is clearly self-disciplined, and he applies this attitude to his leadership of the Greasers. He sees it as his overriding duty to protect his fellow gang members from harm no matter what comes their way. Inevitably, Darry's firm leadership methods cause friction from time to time. In some respects, he's like an old-fashioned dad dealing out tough love. His younger brother Ponyboy, for instance, is none too thrilled at how Darry orders him around. In the Greaser family, Ponyboy's the rebellious teenager; he doesn't take kindly to the imposition of discipline. After Darry hits Ponyboy, the younger boy angrily storms off vowing that Darry will never hit him again.

Ponyboy goes so far as to say that Darry doesn't love anyone or anything. In actual fact, however, Darry loves his brother and genuinely cares about him. But because he has the twin responsibilities of father substitute and gang leader, his firmness can easily be taken for cold indifference.

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