The Oppressiveness Of Invisibility In Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man

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While the novel Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison appears to be a book based on the oppressiveness of invisibility, it is in fact the opinion of the author that there are distinct advantages of being “invisible” to people of the opposite race. In the book, Ellison struggled to define a black culture as something precious, but indissolubly linked to white culture. When you start trying to touch on these grounds, it leaves a lot of room for controversial arguments to occur. The title of this book plays a decisive role in the outcome of the novel because since the narrator of the story is an African American and it’s during the time period in history when racial inequality and segregation were the norm especially in the southern states and even…show more content…
(Littlejohn 196) In this time period, some people of all races were unaware of what was going on down south since not everyone had televisions, but this book brought out everything that was going on and people could afford books more than televisions. The character of the invisible man talked about how certain colleges African Americans preferred not to attend certain colleges due to the number of white people that attended, which meant a higher possibility of discrimination against blacks. This caused black students to attend HBCU’S or Historically Black Colleges/Universities which is what the narrator attended during this time period after he got kicked out the first college he attended somewhere in the south and changed to a new one up in New York. During this time when he was at college, he joined a fraternity called the Brotherhood. One day one of the African American frat brothers ended up getting shot and killed by the police while just walking down the street with our nameless protagonist. The police thought that the frat brother was another guy who committed a crime earlier and mistakenly shot the innocent victim. Unfortunately, this is a problem we are still faced with in today’s society almost 64 years later in the 21st century. Since this book was written in 1952, African Americans and even Caucasians knew that in the next couple of years, drastic changes were going to take place that would make African Americans have equal/similar rights as Caucasians. It was ironic how Ellison released this book in a certain time period that major changes were going to happen in our nation in the coming months and
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