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The Invisible Man

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The reason I chose," THE INVISIBLE MAN, "is because the black man in this story symbolizes the black the black man in society which is set up to fail. He is used, humiliated, and discriminated against through the whole book. He feels that he is invisible to society because society does not view him as a real person. Reading this book was very difficult, because the book was written in first person singular. I had to think hard on my opinion of Ellison's underlining message in this book. To do this I had to ask the question, what drives a man to believe that he is invisible to a society of people?

The book starts out with a Negro boy shy and timid comes to a southern town to be awarded a scholarship. Together with some more Negro boys he is rushed to front of the ballroom were they witness a blond women dancing in the nude. This fiascle is frightening to the boys, because during this period in history a black man could have gotten hung for looking at white lady, not to mention a naked white lady. After this event the boys are blindfolded and made to beat each other to a bloody pulp. Afterwards the boy is made to give a speech of gratitude to the drunken white people while swallowing and nearly choking on his on blood. After this shocking opening the book kind of mellows out some. Next he goes off to college but while in school makes a mistake and takes a white donor through a Negro gin mill. Which from this event he gets expelled. Thinking he has a letter of recommendation, but it is really a document warning potential employers not to hire him written by Dr.Bledsoe the same man who through him out of the college he adored so much. He travels to New York City. Once in New York his attitude changes it seems that all his misfortunes have taken an effect on him and his attitude changes. He joins a Communist group in which the reader can see the bitterness in his heart. Yet in the book Ellison talks about the party so bad it is a wonder they caught the I of his character at all. He later leaves the group. Yet, still it amazed me that a man could feel so out of place or even unwanted enough to join the communist party. Looking at the time period which all this is taking place it was almost suicide to do something like that. It was not enough that he was a black man in a society that did not except him, but all so a part of the communist party that was considered unconstitutional in that day and time.



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