The Stereotypical World In Battle Royal, By Ralph Ellison

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The Stereotypical World in Battle Royal
Humans have the tendency to classify things from their characteristics and from their varying nature. In “Battle Royal”, Ralph Ellison tries to make a point where stereotyping can cause predicaments, sometimes disputes. Racism is a form of stereotyping where it is prejudiced that a person participates in certain activities or speaks differently just from the colour of their skin. In “Battle Royal”, both Black and White females were the victims of the racism that prevailed during segregation in America during the 1940’s. Ellison scrutinizes the animosity and absurd stereotyping against the people who were not white, especially black, through motif, symbolism, and imagery.
In the entirety of the essay,
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One of the most noticeable imagery is white men being classified as lions while the black are mere cattles. On his deathbed, the grandfather advised, “Live with your head in the lion’s mouth.” The lions are the light skinned people who ruled over everyone else during the segregation of America. The few boys participating in the Battle Royal were “herded” into the elevator showing their imagery to cattle. Thus, the whites were considered dominant as the lion beats the cattle and it also shows the stereotypical world where black people are considered mere cattle. Imagery can also be seen when Ellison realizes that the gold coins he had fought so hardly for were mere brass coins of no value. The brass and the gold explain how society views him as nothing valuable while how he views himself as very precious. Indeed others do not see his worth but it cannot be overlooked that even after all the name calling and disrespect he still continues to deliver his speech because he knows what he truly wants for himself. he is not a brass but instead a gold coin that everyone will want after they know his …show more content…
The boys being blindfolded showed the racism prevailing in society. The naked woman is used to describe the inferiority of women against men and where women are stereotyped as weak humans that need to do only as they are told. The boys being made to hit one another shows us how the black people were recklessly discriminated upon without ever really anyone realizing their worth and value. But the most important piece in this story is that the world stereotyped Ellison’s worth as a mere brass coin while he was indeed a gold coin and that only he knew and that was enough for him to strive forward and be determined to reach his goals. This shows that if one is confident in themselves than no matter the power of the stereotypical world, nothing will stop them from reaching their

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