Visible Women in Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man

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Kavita Arya


In every society the status of women has been the marker of the direction in which the wind of identity blows. Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man (1952), as the title suggests, is a male centric African-American novel which portrays the experiences of an Afro-American man in a racially segregated society in the United States in 1940s. His invisibility or lack of identity is representative of the enforced conformity and racial inequality imposed on the African- American community prior to the implementation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Obviously, one has a natural curiosity to know the status of the Afro- American women-their identity and their visibility- in the then American racist society as presented by Ralph Ellison in his debut novel. The aim of the paper is to explore the status of women and assess their position in the American society of white supremacy.

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