In The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton, what are four conflicts that concern the Socs? 

In The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton, what are four conflicts that concern the Socs?


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gmuss25 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The Socs are continually fighting with the Greasers throughout the novel. The majority of their interactions result in violence, and both gangs hate one another. There are several scenes that depict the severity of the brawls involving the two gangs. Johnny is almost beaten to death, Bob Sheldon dies after attempting to drown Ponyboy, and Ponyboy suffers a concussion in the final rumble. The violent conflicts between the two gangs are significant to the plot of the novel.

One of the major conflicts concerning the Socs happens when one of their most respected gang members dies. Bob Sheldon was viewed as a leader in the gang and lost his life after Johnny stabbed him in self-defense. This tragic event only increases the tension between the two opposing gangs, which results in further violence. Losing one of their close friends affects each Soc differently and the traumatic event takes an emotional toll on the gang.

Another conflict involving the Socs concerns the loyalty of their members. Both Cherry Valance and Randy Adderson are jaded about their Soc lifestyle and choose to help the Greasers. Cherry Valance agrees to help spy on the Socs before the big rumble while Randy simply refuses to fight alongside his gang because he feels that fighting is useless.

There is also conflict regarding the Socs' personal relationships with their friends and families. Cherry tells Ponyboy that the Socs are aloof and superficial. She laments about how everyone lies to each other simply to keep up with appearances. Cherry understands that there is no real connection between her group of friends and describes it as one big rat race. Randy also tells Ponyboy that Bob Sheldon's parents kept giving him material things instead of teaching him that his actions had consequences. Randy explains that Soc parents are detached from their children and not aware of their extensive issues.

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The Outsiders

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