Books and Movies Reviews

Invisible Man: The Speech

Heeding to the objective audience before him, the narrator gives an evocative speech filled with abstract imagery and irony.Throughout the speech, Ellison builds the theme of "becoming human" with tense rhetorical arguments and repeated comparisons of his audience
to members of the animal kingdom.Ellison proclaims, "We're a nation of one-eyed mice- Did you ever see such a sight in your life?"He also finds time to call his audience – among other things – "dumb bunnies", and "blind as bats".The narrator's unyielding irreverence for the Brotherhood combined with his use of open-ended questions like the fore-mentioned, imply his irony and that the speech is building to a large, proverbial pat on the back.
From the very beginning, the narrator plays off of his image as just another dumb Negro, apologizing for his incompetence with the microphone, and expressing a concern that it "might bite!"But his playful hyperbole quickly shifts to cynicism with a morbid image of "the steel skull of man", and a reference to the night's earlier topic of dispossession, this time as a cause of.Ellison uses repetition to delay purpose, but keeps from being banal by slowly revealing more, and becoming less and less vague with each passing metaphor.He progresses the admittance of being dumb into one dealing with half-blindness, and finally concludes with the story of his "blind journey" into the Brotherhood's "country of vision".The narrator's personal transformations are best explained as ones from "animal to man", and "blindness to vision".Ellison's style throughout the speech reflects this, building to a final, momentous revelation, declaring his audience as "THE TRUE PATRIOTS!THE CITIZENS OF TOMORROW'S WORLD!"
Except for the inspirational conclusion, the tone of this …


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