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The Invisble Man or Woman

In: English and Literature

Submitted By jaws726
Words 2865
Pages 12
Jonathon White
Blues, Spirituals, and African American Novel
Final Paper

The Invisible Man or the Invisible Woman In Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man, his novels tells a story of a educated African American on a quest a to find his true identity. Throughout his life, he has been controlled and oppressed by white men in order for him to make a name for himself. He tells his own story as the narrator and he journey’s from the South where he attends an all-black college to finally Harlem where he joins cult-like political party called the Brotherhood. The narrator is handed these roles throughout the book, whether it is a driver, a student, a worker, or a party member, which each one he rejects until he is able to realize his role in society as an African American man. The era that the narrator faces his identity crisis is during a time of segregation between races and the complex theory that the white race was the superior. Ellison’s position of racial stereotypes men throughout the novel has a clear compare and contrast for me, but it seems almost invisible for women. Both black and white women characters throughout the novel are neglected and “invisible”, and are personified as typical classic female stereotypes that imitate either the nurturing mother complex or the whore or seducer. Ellison portrays the most notable white women as highly sexual objects and has this fascination with the sexual stereotypes of black men. Black women are as well portrayed as overly sexual beings, but the ones that don’t posses these traits are categorized as the mother figure. In Invisible Man, both white and black women are deliberately stereotyped and are dominated and used by the men in the novel who seek to further their own agendas. First, The white women that appear in the novel represent the typical white women that are interested in black men. This tabooed…...

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