Ralph Ellison Symbolism In Battle Royal

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The Battle within the Dream Within "Battle Royal", by Ralph Ellison, Ellison was able to provide enough imagery through very detailed scenes to entail deeper meanings to certain symbols. These symbols stand within the story, and are stressed by the simple concept of repetition. The narrator's mind is filled with the thought of his speech and his grandfather's "curse", while he still ponders upon the American Dream. "And yet, I had begun to worry about my speech again", the speech itself is continues to come back and engulf the narrator, yet is used to accomplish the Dream and conquer the curse. (Ellison 282) Things of this nature are emotionally tied, yet holds a physical effect. The narrator is stuck in a never ending labyrinth,…show more content…
Yet even then I had been going over my speech. In my mind each word was as bright as flame....I could hear the bleary voices yelling insistently for the battle royal to begin. "Get going in there!" "Let me at that big nigger!"" (Ellison 280-81) This presents a perfect example of letting the African-American's fight off each other. The white-American's use racial dialogue to their advantage towards the African-American's to drive them against one another. At the same time, repetition prevails, and the narrator is reminded yet again of his speech, providing its actual importance. The narrator gives his speech, and is recognized for his achievements and rewarded with a briefcase for the future and scholarship to the state college for Negroes. This seems to be another attempt to keep the African-American's against each other, sending him where only their race is allowed, or intended to attend. Although the narrator accomplishes a piece of his goal, as well as his grandfather's "curse", he has a dream accompanied by his grandfather once more. He gives the narrator a series of envelopes within the briefcase, and reads a document that read, ""To Whom It May Concern....Keep This Nigger-Boy Running."" (Ellison 287) The curse of his grandfather has yet to dissolve, for the narrator must keep

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