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Essay Light and Truth in Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man

Assignment id 1007609
Discipline Writing
Assignment type Essay
Words 1695
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Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man tells of one person's realizations of earth. This man, the invisible man, comes to realize through experience what the world is actually like. He realizes there's illusion and there is reality, and truth is seen through light. The Invisible Man says, "nothing, storm or flood, must get in the way of our dependence on light and more and brighter light. The reality is that the light and light is that" (7). Ellison uses light as a symbol for this fact, or fact of earth, as well as contrasts between dark/light and black/white to help show the invisible man's growing understanding of the concept that the people of the world have to be revealed their true manners. The invisible man becomes conscious of the planet's truth through the years and only then is unable to completely understand the world in which he lives. The invisible man first begins to experience realizations of fact after his expulsion from the college and his birth at New York. Here he increases his initial job in Liberty Paints. His job is made up of mixing pitch black paint with white paint to make the company's "Optic White" paint. The paint itself supplies a logo for the world in which the invisible man is residing. The society attempts to assimilate the black culture (black paint) into the white culture (white paint) creating at the end an "Optic White" solution in which the blacks have conformed to the whites. The invisible individual notes how the black drops spread out on the white paint stating, "I quantified the glistening black drops, seeing them settle on the surface and become blacker still, dispersing suddenly out to the borders" (200). This correlates to elephants spreading in society, only to be "mixed-in" to form a white solution. The invisib...

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