The Invisible Life In Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man

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What is it like to feel truly invisible? Sometimes we believe we feel that way when we are not getting the attention we desire. However, what would it be like to feel like nobody in society truly notices you? Ralph Ellison gives us a glimpse of how this life would feel through his novel Invisible Man. This book portrays the life of a young black man living in the late 1920’s to early 1930’s American south. Through the novel, we witness the narrator travel from the South up to the North and face discrimination and abuse. The story begins with the narrator stating “I am invisible, understand, simply because people refuse to see me. (Prologue.1)” The narrator (who’s true name is never stated), is finally ready to come out from underground and …show more content…
Once he regains memory, he leaves the hospital. Weakened by all that has happened, the narrator collapses on the street. Black members in the community find him, and proceed to take him to Mary’s house. Mary is a kind hearted woman who lets the narrator live with her for free. Because of her genuine hospitality, the narrator feels the need to repay her. One day, he witnesses an elderly black couple being evicted in Harlem. He gives an fervid speech, which catches the eye of of Brother Jack, a white man. He is then offered a position as spokesperson of the Brotherhood, which he initially turns down but later accepts. The Brotherhood is the political voice of the socially oppressed, and the narrator is inducted at Chthonian Hotel. He is forced to cut all ties with his past and change his name, as well as move homes. His first job is to help achieve the groups goal in …show more content…
Life prior to the civil rights act and during it really intrigued me, so when I read the prologue of Invisible Man I knew I wanted to read more. In Invisible Man, we witness the Brotherhood use blacks in order to achieve their own political gain and deny them their inalienable rights by keeping them in their place. The major strength of this book is that it keeps you guessing. There was not a dull moment once the major points started occurring. The major weakness however, was that it started slow. As soon as you get through the first couple chapters, things get extremely interesting. Invisible Man exposes the true brutality and hideous truths that many blacks faced during this time period. This book is intriguing and keeps you guessing. Since you never know what is about to happen, you do not get bored. Because of this, I would recommend this book to a friend. What intrigued me the most was how the beginning and ending of the book both involve the narrator coming and going from being underground and “invisible”. Overall, I liked this book. It gives the world a true glimpse in what life was like prior to de-segregation and amongst major civil rights

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