The Outsiders

how does the division between the east side and the west side represent the conflict within the novel it self?

discuss the physical role of the novel

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The Greasers live on the East side of town and the Socs live on the West. This sort of community or turf conflict is a very old theme. Not only does it separate social class, there is a geographic separation that serves to intensify the rivalry. The rich kids and the poor kids have physical geographic references to validate their anger. The east side contains all the socio-economic markers that Greasers can relate to. These include run down houses, stores, cars, schools.......The West Side has the opposite. So when the fancy corvairs slide into the East side, the geographic and cultural conflict becomes tangible. This certainly would not be the same if the Greasers and the Socs were scattered throughout the city.