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Teen Gangs With Veiws By The Author S.E. Hinton

1610 words - 6 pages

Many writers, like Susan Eloise Hinton, have focused on teenage problems in society. Sometimes, writers develop novels from personal experiences and/or from observations in their environment. S.E. Hinton grew up in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Tulsa is the setting for all of her novels. "Tulsa is a classic American city. It's got the river, the old railroad, the 'good side' and the 'bad side.' It's got the new high rises downtown, and the half million or so population, and the problems of cities." At age 17, Hinton, still a high school student, wrote her first novel The Outsiders. It was published in 1967. It is a story of teenage rebellion and heroism. It focuses on the class conflict between two groups of youth, and the problems that occur as a result of their anger and violence. Many teenagers in today's society are unhappy with their lives. Some join gangs or engage in violent activity like the youth portrayed in Hinton's book The Outsiders. S.E. Hinton's depiction of gangs, youth violence, and teen problems is genuine and continues to represent a clear description of the problems our society needs to focus on today. S. E. Hinton's personal life is reflected in her books. Hinton was a tomboy, and she wrote The Outsiders from a male perspective. Critics and readers of this book were surprised to find out that S.E. Hinton was a girl. The whole status thing in high school drove Susie crazy. She couldn't understand why students would worry about whom they should say hi to in the halls. She had no label in high school. Hinton is quoted by Daly as saying, "If I had a label at all, it was probably something like the "School Nut", but I was friends with Greasers, Socs, and artsy-craftsies. I could talk to all of them because I wasn't any of them."Susie Hinton always wanted to be a writer. Her father, who Hinton was very close to, died of cancer while she was writing The Outsiders. During her father's hospitalization, she spent a lot of time alone in her room writing and withdrawing into herself.After writing The Outsiders, Hinton suffered a three-year writer's block. Hinton later went on to write the following books: Rumble Fish, Tex, and That Was Then, This is Now. These books focused on violence, poverty, alcoholism, and drug addiction. These are some of the same problems teens continue to face today.In The Outsiders the main character, Ponyboy, believes there are two groups: the Greasers and the Socs. He is proud to belong to the Greasers, and will fight for the respect he thinks they deserve. In the story, the Socs make fun of the Greasers, and the adults overlook them. The Greasers do not want to accept the status they have been given, and so they rebel. They are proud, strong-willed and know that they deserve better. Because of this their lives are full of danger and constant conflicts. At the end of the story, Ponyboy becomes a writer. He is no longer violent and learns how to express his anger in more creative ways. "The universal message of The...

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