The experiences of the Invisible Man are so real and true with such rich imagery. Even today some 40 to 50 years later prejudice still rings throughout society like a loud, annoying bell. Some of us today still haven't learned to treat all people equal and I think that is what makes the book so great that it will most likely never die out, no matter what era, what age the book will always relate to society and the lives of people. All ages can read it and understand and also it has unique style. Ellison's combines the experiences of a black man living in the south in the time of racism and prejudice and of a man that just wants to find himself. He wants a sense of identity and self-reliance, something we all want and can relate to.
There are two aspects in the novel, it's just not about prejudice, but it also the search for identity. I'm glad I got to read such an intriguing novel. I will always remember the moment I read the first line of the book (not including the preface). Kae and I were sitting in the big couch chairs at Barnes and Noble trying to get our summer reading done. It took me forever to get through the preface, but as soon as I read the first line of chapter one, I interrupted Kae to read it to her.
'It goes a long way back, some twenty years. All my life I had been looking for something, and everywhere I turned someone tried to tell me what it was. I accepted their answers too, though they were often in contradiction and even self-contradictory. I was na " ive I was looking for myself and asking everyone except myself questions which I, and only I could answer. It took me a long time and much painful boomeranging of my expectations to achieve a realization everyone else appears to have been born with: That I am nobody but myself..
' It was one of those quotes that I read and immediately thought... ' that's so applies to me!' At an age when most of us are still trying to distinguish between who we really are and who our parents want us to be, reading the 'invisible man's' trials and tribulations to finding himself is something we can all relate to. It was funny because every summer we look forward to that one 'ethnic' novel that's always on the reading list. Whether it was Color Purple, House on Mango Street, or I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings... you knew they would generally be shorter and easier reading. And then this year we assumed Invisible Man was supposed to fit into that role, but it was so much longer!
I honestly didn't think it was going to be fun to read and would end up being one of those novels that you have to force yourself to read and get through. But to my surprise I actually enjoyed it! Still, it would have been nice if it had been a tad bit shorter.