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Plot Summary Of Ralph Ellison

’s _Invisible Man_ Essay, Research Paper Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man opens with a prologue describing the main character in time after the begining of the body of the book. In the prologue, Ellison tells of the main

’s _Invisible Man_ Essay, Research Paper

Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man opens with a prologue describing the main character in

time after the begining of the body of the book. In the prologue, Ellison tells of the main

characters invisibility. It is not a physical invisiblity, but rther he is not recognised, and therefore

persieved, by the world at large. This is coupled with the fact that he is constantly trying to be

someone else, other than himself, creates for his a complete loss of identity, and he becomes a

man without a soul.

The story begins with the main character being forced to partisipate in an archaic and

animalistic free-for-all in order for him to be allowed to give his speach that will determine

wheather he will be accepted to the ‘college’. He is accepted and goes through two of his years at

the college uneventfully. He is ejected from the school during his junior year when the trustee

who ws in his care while visiting the school fell ill and is taken to a local bar to get some

alchohol. He is given seven letter of what he suposes to be recomendation to give to people in

New York. He moves to Harlem and delivers the letters. He finds out that these letters were not

recomenation but rather advisments against hiring him. The seventh reciever of a letter gives him

a job in a paint factory. He does not derform well there and evetually causes he own dismissal by

ignoring hes work and getting knoked out by an explosion that is his fault. He joins a black

power group called The Brotherhood and is sent out to spread the word of the group. He meets a

man named Clfton, his first real freind, and clifon is shot by a police officer. He speaks at

Clifton’s funeral and the Brotherhood does not like what he says. he befriens a middle aged

white woman whao flirs with him a good bit. one night while with her is is asked to come to

Harlem and come a riot that is occering. A rival of the Brotherhood, Ras the Exhorter, sees him

there and and starts chasing him. While in the subway he, quite literally, runs into Mr. Norton,

the trustee from the college that had the fainting spell. When he asks Mr. Norton if he

remembers him Mr. Norton says no. Then he begins lghing histerically at Mr. Norton. The book

ends with hi realization that he is not his own man and completely invisble to all.

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