Title Profile & Character Information

The Invisible Man

Annotation
Invisible Manis a milestone in American literature, a book that has continued to engage readers since its appearance in 1952.  A first novel by an unknown writer, it remained on the bestseller list for sixteen weeks, won the National Book Award for fiction, and established Ralph Ellison as one of the key writers of the century.  The nameless narrator of the novel describes growing up in a black community in the South, attending a Negro college from which he is expelled, moving to New York and becoming the chief spokesman of the Harlem branch of "the Brotherhood", and retreating amid violence and confusion to the basement lair of the Invisible Man he imagines himself to be.  The book is a passionate and witty tour de force of style, strongly influenced by T.S. Eliot'sThe Waste Land, Joyce, and Dostoevsky.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

Awards
1953  National Book Awards

Characters
NameUnnamed
GenderMale
TraitBlack

GenreFiction
Historical
Sociological
Classic
TopicsSouthern life
Blacks
Prejudice
Lies
Truth
Racially-mixed people
Social activists
Deception
Race relations
Segregation
SettingNew York