Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man

From PBS via Three Quarks Daily…

Ellison’s life-long receptivity to the variegated culture that surrounded him, beginning in Oklahoma City, served him well in creating a new take on literary modernism in INVISIBLE MAN. The novel references African-American folktales, songs, the blues, jazz, and black traditions like playing the dozens — much as T.S. Eliot and James Joyce had referenced classical Western and Eastern civilization in THE WASTELAND and ULYSSES. An added difference for Ellison was that his modernist narrative was also a vehicle for inscribing his own and the black identity — as well as a roadmap for anyone experiencing themselves as “invisible,” unseen. “Time” magazine essayist Roger Rosenblatt would say: “Ralph Ellison taught me what it is to be an American.”

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