Young Lonigan Outline

Modernity in Literature

Stud’s Lonigan Outline


Sarah Myers

Thesis: The cultural pressure to be a tough grown up negatively affects the choices of Stud’s Lonigan in Young Lonigan, by James T.Farrell

1.) Choice to fight Weary

  • Motivation behind the fight was to gain importance, status, notoriety in neighborhood. A young 14 year old wants respect. Is this the best way for him to go about it. Will he be encouraged to fight again? (Upside: standing up for Helen.)

2.) Choice to join 58th st. gang

  • Influences new gang has on Studs: higher level of disobedience, increased pressure for sexual experience, tobacco use, theft, bullying i.e. Danny O’reilly

3.) Rebelling against parental guidance

  • Outright disagreement turns to verbal agreement, later actions prove otherwise. Anger turns toward apathy. He does not listen, respect, or consider his parents advice. Might change this, sort of weak examples.

4.) Imitation of ‘The Real Thing’

  • Studs began fighting, he joined a gang with tough kids, he forgets his parents. He gets everything he wants, but is this good for Studs. He is now hanging around with older men who drink, smoke, play jokes, & visit the whorehouse. His conversation with him furthers his desire to be grown up and sexually experienced with girls.

5.) Choice to have sex with Iris.

  • Caving under pressure of 58th street gang, doing it to impress others, to be grown up, to be like the ‘real thing.’ No thought of maybe this isn’t the guy he wants to be. It is all here and now for Studs Lonigan.

Conclusion: Is change possible for Studs Lonigan

  • Helen, Lucy, ??

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