Influence In Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man

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Invisible Man, a novel written by Ralph Ellison, chronicles the journey of a young black man on his journey to self- actualization during the post- reconstruction era from a southern college to Harlem, New York. Invisible Man is influenced by difficult racial tensions and the deceitful actions that these tensions create. In the beginning of the book, the Invisible Man lets those around him who hold influential positions in society influence him strongly and make decisions for him; however, Invisible Man eventually realizes the people that he admires, such as Dr. Bledsoe and Brother Jack, don 't always have his best interests in mind. Throughout the book, Ellison demonstrates the suffocating control fueled by racial prejudice that affects…show more content…
This divide is particularly noticeable when considering the race of the characters. It is obvious that the majority of powerful characters are white and the least powerful characters are black. The most notable exception to this rule is Dr. Bledsoe, who is black, but still has a lot of influence. Dr. Bledsoe has so much influence over Invisible Man that he sends Invisible Man to the North with false hope and letter of recommendation that portrays incompetence. Throughout the book, Ralph Ellison uses the color white to symbolize this struggle for control and represent the two distinct groups of characters and how their behavior is perceived. In How to Read Literature Like a Professor, Foster explains that colors are often used to symbolize a central theme or idea of the story and Ellison demonstrates this by using the color white to symbolize the power that affects the characters. While Invisible Man is a student at the university, his job is to drive the beneficiaries of the university around.. While driving Mr. Norton, a prominent white donor, around, the narrator frequently mentions the white dividing line of the highway in the context of him feeling controlled. When he returns to the
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