Ralph Ellison 's Battle Royal Essay

1078 Words Oct 13th, 2015 5 Pages
The short story that I decided to analyze is Ralph Ellison’s Battle Royal. This short story to me implied how in essence, we are not so different from our (black people) slave ancestors. A quote in the story where he says, “I am not ashamed of my grandparents for having been slaves. I am only ashamed of myself for having at one time been ashamed.” This quote epitomized the whole short story for me. It displayed how different the invisible man point of view was from when he was narrating the story and from the beginning of the story. Ralph Ellison entrancingly showed how sometimes lack of self-respect can inherently increases one chances of success if you are a Black person and somehow that very success can falsely allow them to laud oneself. During this paper, I will state why I have that particular position and will support that position from snippets from the short story.
Throughout the short story, the invisible man finds himself trying to prove himself to white people. With this eagerness to validate himself to white people, he allowed himself to be humiliated by them. Typically, Black people, who are ashamed of their slave ancestors because they see them as weak, allow themselves to blame their forefathers and foremothers for their own lifelong status of being slaves. Slaves were humiliated, dominated, and keen to “mastah” demands to save themselves. Easy to think that in the same position that you wouldn’t allow that to happen to you, yet is that not what the…

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