Critical Insights: Invisible Man, 1st Edition

  • Robert C. Evans
  • Published By: Palgrave MacMillan
  • ISBN-10: 1682179621
  • ISBN-13: 9781682179628
  • DDC: 813.54
  • Grade Level Range: 9th Grade - College Senior
  • 300 Pages | eBook
  • Original Copyright 2018 | Published/Released February 2019
  • This publication's content originally published in print form: 2018

  • Price:  Sign in for price



Ellison’s novel is widely regarded as one of the most important works of African American fiction and of American fiction in general. Winner of the 1953 National Book Award for Fiction and often listed among the top one hundred novels of the twentieth century, it has become even more important in the years since its first appearance than it was perceived to be at that time. The present volume examines the work from different critical perspectives, including biographical, historical, cultural, formalist, economic, and more. This critique places Ellison’s work within the contexts of the African American literary canon as well as within the broader traditions of American and world literature. Among the issues explored are questions about the genre(s) to which the novel belongs; the kinds of politics the work both explores and implies; the work’s philosophical overtones and implications; and the ways the novel was received both in its own time and in subsequent decades.

Table of Contents

Front Cover.
Half Title Page.
Title Page.
Copyright Page.
About This Volume.
On Invisible Man: Blue Notes, from Segregation to Black Lives Matter.
Biography of Ralph Ellison.
Critical Contexts.
1: Efforts to Ban Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man.
2: About Invisible Man: Critical Responses from the Fifties through the Sixties.
3: Invisible Man: Sensation and Making Sense.
4: Biblical Riffs in and on Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man.
Critical Readings.
5: Ralph Ellison: A Biography.
6: Invisible Man: Critical Responses from the Seventies through the Early Twenty-First Century.
7: Ralph Ellison on the Craft of Good Writing.
8: Ralph Ellison on Invisible Man: Early Interviews.
9: Invisible Man: Anger, Action, and Art.
10: Race and Individualism in Ralph Ellison's Writings.
11: The Political Implications of Ralph Ellison's Writings.
12: Invisible Man and the Mysteries of Reconstruction.
13: Invisible Man the Play: The Oren Jacoby Stage Adaptation.
14: Ralph Ellison: An American Journey—A Survey of Reviews (and a Guide to Other Films).
15: On Invisible Man: Past, Present, and Present-Past.
Appendix: Early Materials on Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man.
Works by Ralph Ellison.
About the Editor.