Invisible Man Themes

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In the earlier 20th century, African-Americans had little to no equality when compared to whites, laws were even made to ensure that African-Americans couldn’t have the same rights that whites had. This idea of segregation and unequal racial power is shown throughout the novel Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison, and is also shown within the poems I, Too and Mother to Son, by Langston Hughes. In Ralph Ellison’s literary work we are shown what the cruel results of systematic racism looks like from the perspective of the African-American, both in the South and up North in New York. Langston Hughes in his two poems gives us a short glimpse of the segregation that followed African-Americans. With such similar stories and perspectives, the literary…show more content…
The theme of race is also is present in the poem I, Too, which also shows the segregation of African-Americans and whites when the narrator has to eat in the kitchen. Both of these literary works express the difference there is based on the color of your skin by providing images of segregation, and the difference of political power. The book Invisible Man gets its title because of the narrator’s race, he feels invisible because people don’t see him for who he is but what he is, a black man. The same example is present in the poem I, Too, the white people only see the speaker as a black person instead of a person who deserves equal rights. Another example of the theme is the college with the statue either unveiling the black man or covering him up.
The final common theme of the two writer’s works is ambition. The theme of ambition is seen in all three of the literary works, in the book Invisible Man the author has the ambition to gain more power for himself and for the rest of his race. At the beginning of the book, the narrator states "To Whom It May Concern … Keep This Nigger-Boy Running" (Ellison 33). This quote shows the ambition and the drive the narrator has at the beginning of the story. Another example of the narrator’s ambition is “Perhaps everyone loved
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