Ralph Ellison - Invisible Man (1 Viewer)


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Am reading this book recently


Pretty well written, opening is almost Dostoevsky-style:

I am an invisible man. No, I am not a spook like those who haunted Edgar Allan Poe; nor am I one of your Hollywood-movie ectoplasms. I am a man of substance, of flesh and bone, fiber and liquids — and I might even be said to possess a mind. I am invisible, understand, simply because people refuse to see me.
Has anybody read it? I like it very much so far.
It's an outstanding book and well deserving of its llofty reputation.

And even though it was written as a book about race, it transcends that and stands as a book for outsiders of any colour.
I read that book in English class at NY City college back in the day, so the teachings I received were heavily oriented towards race. I was one of maybe two or three whites there, but I enjoyed it and can see how it transcends race if read in a more relaxed setting. It certainly does deserve its lofty rep.
I've been meaning to read this for years (although you could probably say that about at least 100 other books) so thanks for the reminder and recommendations.
That book is a powerhouse of gut wrenching reality. I can rarely make it through novels (unless semi-autobiographical) or book-length monographs, but this one I read twice. So many of them seem long-winded, trite, contrived, generic, etc, I usually read essay collections, poetry, short stories, etc. But this one there is just no way to give the usual criticism of movies and novels, that they had a good idea but would have been better off as a short film or short story. I Ellison blew me away here. Truly epic. Something about that dispassionate protagonist knocked my socks off. Universities don't teach it much these days, at least here in the states, they go for the symbolically impoverished Richard Wright and James Baldwin instead (also, Ellison never really bounced back creatively from the house fire - some say it was arson - that destroyed his second work after he was 300 pages in).

And even though it was written as a book about race, it transcends that and stands as a book for outsiders of any colour.

Agree here for sure although it could go even further, and say that it stands for insiders, too, because by and large the only way to get 'inside' is by ignoring ones own inside?
While I understand that it's somewhat a classic in American literature, it seems to be virtually unknown in the German-speaking countries? Which is a shame, if true.

Best read I had in some while.

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