Benjamin Rapperport

The Outsiders/Hero's Journey Essay

My Essay Reflection

I think at the start of the year my writing was basic and did not have much energy but now I am able to give it depth and energy.  My way of writing made it so you lost lots of interest early in the writing and I included a lot of useless words to fill space. I am now able to write more interesting information.I think my style is a very in your face and attention grabbing way of writing. I am now able to give it energy and I find it fun to write so that when you read it, it feels like I am right there explaining it to you.I want to learn to follow directions because I lose lots of easy points that I could get if I just followed directions. In all my classes I do the work well but I end up losing almost half the points just because I didn't followed instructions.I liked the way that when we looked at the Hero's Journey we saw how each adventure book had the Hero's Journey in it. Even in easy and fun books like Jack and the beanstalk he goes on a heroes journey and goes through all the steps.

The Outsiders/Hero's Journey Essay

When People hear kids saying they want to be a superhero they are almost always talking about the people on TV shows and movies. They are never talking about someone that figured out a philosophy about life or helped someone in a small way. Both of these are heroes, and one may be even more important, depending on how you look at it. When people live their lives they may meet many heroes but they don't view them as heroes. An example of this is Ponyboy Curtis who goes on through a heros journey. When he returns he does not have any “superpowers”, but he has something that is almost as important. In the realistic fiction novel The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton the main character Ponyboy curtis goes on a Hero’s Journey because he travels through the three required phases of a monomyth.

When Ponboy leaves Dally, with the gun and money, goes into the unknown and starts his Journey. He meets Dally at Buck’s house after Johnny kills the Soc. Daly says “‘Git goin!’ He messed up Johnny’s hair. ‘Take care , kid, he said softly. ‘Sure, Dally, thanks.’ And we ran into the darkness.”(62). In the Separation from the Known the hero leaves their known and comfortable world and goes into the new and unknown. The hero feels his or her life is missing something and they go to seek it. They also have a sudden and unexpected change.Pony and Johnny experience the first part of the separation from the know when they leave their own town and friends and go out into the world.They do not know what will be out there since the outside world is dark and unknown. Another part of it is since he is a greaser he feels he has no choice but to run away because he would not be treated fairly. He is trying to find fairness and justice from being unfairly treated. The next part is how it was unexpected and sudden because they did not plan it and they think they need to flee. He goes through all of these which proves he went through the separation.

He has to go through the challenge of cutting his hair and changing his identity. When Johnny and Pony are running away they need to change their identity so Pony and Johnny need to cut their hair. By doing this he takes away the only thing he has as a greaser. “I shuddered. ‘Not too short,’ I begged. ‘Johnny please...’”(72) The Initiation is when the hero has to face a psychological or physical unknown challenge.When Johnny cuts Pony’s hair it takes away his identity of a being a greaser, which is the only thing he has. This challenge is the main thing of the Initiation and it is both The physical challenge of not being “tuff” and the challenge of not being a greaser. As a greaser his hair is what he held on to, the only thing he had that the Socs did not and cutting it off took away his whole identity. Without his hair he i just a kid living in the bad part of the neighborhood.

Johnny is in the hospital hospital dying. After Johnny, Dally, and Ponyboy go out into the fire Pony finds out that Johnny is really hurt in the hospital. Pony and Dally are super depressed. “ You’ll be okay’, Pony says firmly. Don’t start crying, I commanded myself, don't start crying, you’ll scare Johnny”(121). In the Hero’s Journey, the second part of the Initiation is when the hero is in the Abyss. The Abyss is when the hero is at his or her lowest point and has to battle their greatest fear whether it is internal or external. There are three other steps and those are the Transformation, Revelation, and Atonement. In the Outsiders, Pony is in the Abyss when he realizes Johnny is going to die. When he is in the hospital he knows that eve after all they had been through, Johnny would die in the hospital. Johnny had always been their pet and still need him as much as anyone else. Pony and Johnny had been really close friends but having Johnny die realize that his greatest fear had been realized, that another person he cared about died. Just like when his parents died, another loss of his “family” is what scares him most, making it his Abyss.

Ponyboy experiences The Return to Everyday Life when he writes his essay for the teacher about journey. After Johnny and Dally are dead Pony goes back to school, he needs to write an essay. Pony narrates, “Someone should tell their side of the story, and maybe people would understand them and wouldn’t be so quick to judge a boy by the amount of hair oil he wore”.(179) In the Hero’s Journey, The Return to Everyday Life is when the hero returns back to their normal day life but they return with a gift. The gift is usually something that they learned over the journey and with it over they can tell the world about what they now know. When Pony returns with all the knowledge he learned over his journey he decides to try in school and make his essay. The reason it is important is because it was not just to pass the class but to tell the world about what he learned. He is telling his world his “wisdom” and it is his ideas about the world that give him his new knowledge. His essay explains to everyone that reads it how life is not good and bad and how everyone experiences problems even if they are not the same.

The main character Ponyboy Curtis goes on a Hero’s Journey because he travels through the three required phases of monomyth. Ponyboy experiences the Separation of the Known and the Initiation when he leaves Dally and runs away and when he goes through the challenge of cutting and bleaching his hair. He experiences the second part of the Initiation and the Return to everyday life when Johnny is dying and when Pony writes his essay. There are no “superheroes” that exist today, that are saving the world from evil but there are many people that have gone on a Hero’s Journey and came back with a gift. All they have to do is be ready for it and prepare. If people do meet someone that has been on a Hero’s Journey, they will soon find they have an important gift to share.

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