Racism And Social Injustice In Battle Royal, By Ralph Ellison

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''Battle Royal'' In his novel, and in this chapter particularly, Ellison talks about racism and social injustice in the American society. Comparing the narrator and his grandfather, he creates a feeling of empathy in the reader and paints a picture of the contemporary society with all its indisputable flaws, double standards and ever-present inequality. We learn from the text that the grandfather was a slave at one point in his life, but he actually remained a slave metaphorically until he died, as did the narrator, because they were both conformists, didn't stand up to authority and just took whatever was given to them. The narrator seems to look upon white people as superior, and with both fear and admiration. In their…show more content…
I accepted their answers too, though they were often in contradiction and even self-contradictory. I was naive. I was looking for myself and asking everyone except myself questions which I, and only I, could answer.'' ( Ellison, Ralph. Invisible Man 11) The narrator certainly profited from behaving that way since he got the chance to go to college in the end: ''On my graduation day I delivered an oration in which I showed that humility was the secret, indeed, the very essence of progress.'' ( Ellison, Ralph. Invisible Man 12) – this proved to be true for him as it got him the scholarship which would have otherwise been inaccessible along with his academic future and any chance of a decent life. Following his grandfather's advice, he basically outsmarted them and they didn't even realize it. The irony is that he also didn't realize what he had done until much later. What the grandfather said to him could be summarized into one sentence: ''Kill them with your kindness.'' This shows that skin color doesn't define a person, their personality, intelligence and persistence does. While he was merely their entertainment device, the white men turned out to be the narrator's device to path his way into a better future. He therefore proved the statement that when a person is motivated and determined to succeed, regardless of one's race, sex or any other factor, that person will make that happen, no matter

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