Ralph Ellison | Critical Essay by Robert G. O'Meally

This literature criticism consists of approximately 31 pages of analysis & critique of Ralph Ellison.
This section contains 11,162 words
(approx. 38 pages at 300 words per page)
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Critical Essay by Susan L. Blake

SOURCE: Blake, Susan L. “Ritual and Rationalization: Black Folklore in the Works of Ralph Ellison.” PMLA 94, no. 1 (January 1979): 121-36.

In the following essay, Blake considers the role of African American folklore in Ellison's short stories.

The predominant theme in the works of Ralph Ellison is the quest for cultural identity. Although he does not realize this himself, the protagonist of Invisible Man seeks identity, not as an individual, but as a black man in a white society. He encounters and combats the problem Ellison identified in an interview with three young black writers in 1965: “Our lives, since slavery, have been described mainly in terms of our political, economic, and social conditions as measured by outside norms, seldom in terms of our own sense of life or our own sense of values gained...

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This section contains 11,162 words
(approx. 38 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Edith Schor
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