A major theme we see throughout both novels, is the loss of innocence. In Lord of the Flies we see that the boys turn to savagery instead of working together to survive. One instance is the killing wild pig that is in fact pregnant. Giving no remorse to the fact that they had killed a pig that was clearly going to be a mother show's that these boys have lost any and all innocence in this aspect. Keeping in mind these are all extremely young boys. Whereas in the outsiders, we see Johnny Cade ends up killing Bob, and then him and Ponyboy both had to go into hiding. Which means, they had to fend for themselves, and look after one another. Johnny had become like the rest of the Greasers. A "bad boy" who commits crime. These two boys being around 14, who had been pushed to the end and now the only innocence they had left, that kept them different from the rest of the Greasers, was gone.
Commonalities? It's clear to see that the biggest commonality throughout both of these books is the bitterness among each set of boys all based around their differing socioeconomic differences. In the outsiders we have the Greasers vs. the Socs. Which in simple terms is the poor vs. the rich gangs. The Socs being the rich, because they are in a higher social class, and then the Greasers which are in the middle class, which is the so called poor, but the Socs think they are far lesser than them even though they are not dirt poor. Whereas in lord of the flies, we see that we have boys who are also more affluent than another and use it to their advantages in a more childish way. Picking on each other, and having a good amount of disrespect towards one another. Why though? Because that's human nature. If someone is not exactly as we are, we find at least 1 thing, that we can use to our advantage to make ourselves feel better. Whether it's being nit-picky about what someone else wears, or looks like, to having a judgement on them because of a socioeconomic difference.
Ralph, is from the Anglo-Saxon, his name means "To Counsel" he is a natural leader. Throughout this novel we see that from the beginning. Maybe that's the reason he is the one who spotted the conch? Hidden meaning I think yes.
Jack, his name's origin is Hebrew, and it means "One who takes power with force". Something commonly shown throughout this novel. His decisions are made mostly out of anger and force. For example; In chapter 8 he has Wilfred tied up for hours, just to beat him for a "crime" he committed. Time and time again Jack uses violence and force to gain control. No one wants to be the one that gets the short end of the stick, or in this case...Jack's spear?
Sheldon's Blue Mustang (the Soc car)
This car, is a symbol of wealth in the outsiders. If you had a NICE car, you were a Soc. Much like nowadays; if you have nice stuff, you're the "it" factor. The Soc's cars are the symbol of the power they have over the greasers, because the Greasers are typically on foot. Although the Greasers have contact with cars somewhat, it's usually to the Soc benefit. Ex. Sodapop repairs them
Greaser Hair. The symbol of their identity. It doesn't boil down to rich or poor, it boils down to their appearance. Their hair is what makes them a greaser. It's how people distinguish a Greaser between a Soc, or any other social class. But it's their pride. For example, in the beginning, the Soc's threatened to cut Ponyboys hair, which would rob him of his identity. No Greaser hair, not a Greaser. Simple.
Relevance to society. Then and Now.
Looking at the outsiders, it's much like the world today, but somehow it's also different. It's not just social status, it's person to person. The issue with socioeconomic status is still at large, just in differing ways. Stereotyping. It's like the issues and conflicts brought up within that novel were just flipped and morphed into different ways, in which we now live in a society that isn't so much bitter as it is just...nit picky. Be this way, not that way. That view is wrong, this one is right. So to speak. It's a very complicated matter. With Lord of the Flies, oh my. The way those boys start out, makes one feel for them, wholeheartedly, like "These poor boys" but then you look at the savagery that comes out an "No. No. Shame." society does not condone violence, even though it happens all around us. These books are relevant in that it shows what society wishes to not be like...but somehow, is not better than. In some aspects maybe, but things are still pretty rocky.