Why would Ponyboy rather have anyone's hate than their pity in The Outsiders?    

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litteacher8 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Ponyboy would rather have people’s hate than pity because pity is against his pride.

Ponyboy comments that he doesn’t want anyone’s pity.  He knows he is poor, and does not see it as a bad thing.  It is part of who he is.

I hoped they hated us, that they weren't full of that pity-the-victims-of environment junk...(p. 85)

Ponyboy does not want to be considered a victim of his environment.  He knows that he has fewer conveniences than others, but that does not mean that he can’t have his pride.  Ponyboy feels too proud for pity.

I'm not saying that either Socs or greasers are better; that's just the way things are. (p. 2)

Ponyboy would like to be treated just as well as the Socs. He feels there is a double standard when it comes to the way the two groups are treated, and the Greasers are assumed to be up to no good.


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