Presentation on theme: "Invisible Man Chapters 12-15 Alexis Mezzenga, Kaley Shagen and Mark Gooley."— Presentation transcript:
Invisible Man Chapters 12-15 Alexis Mezzenga, Kaley Shagen and Mark Gooley
Theme Statement A person can use the feelings of the past to motivate their choices in the future.
Thesis Statement Through the encounters with people and events the Narrator has in his new life, Ellison teaches us that one can use the feelings of the past to motivate their choices in the future and use the idea of home to progress in life.
Evidence #1 “Nor did I think of Mary as a “friend”; she was something more- a force, a stable, familiar force like something out of my past which kept me from whirling off into some unknown which I dared not face.” (Ellison 258)
So What? #1 With this quote it shows how IM thinks of Mary Rambo as someone out of his past. Mary represents a mother figure to the Invisible Man and symbolizes his home in the South. The feelings of home and safety that Mary provided help guide the narrator's confidence to go get a job. With him being indebted to her he had even more of a reason to get a job when he met the Brotherhood, that was one of the reasons that caused him to take the job. IM uses his feeling towards the South (home) to make an assessment about this woman who basically forces him to go home with her. He is suspicious that she went through his pockets and that shows how his feelings of the past led him to think that this woman who helped him was a bad person.
Evidence #2 “I stopped as though struck by a shot, deeply inhaling, remembering, my mind surging back, back. At home, we’d bake them in the hot coals of the fireplace…” (Ellison 262) "I took a bite, finding it as sweet and as hot as any I'd ever had, and was overcome with such a surge of homesickness that I turned away to keep my control...I walked along, munching the yam, just as suddenly overcome by an intense feeling of freedom.” (Ellison 264)
So What? #2 The Narrator walks the streets of Harlem in deep thought, until he encounters a baked yam stand. The yams remind him of the past and allow for him to embrace who he is. His first bite of the yam sent a strong feeling of nostalgia throughout his entire body and he became homesick. He then reminisced of home and his yam eating days. Remembering the happy times of his childhood, he was comforted and proud to be himself. However, his comfort soon ignited a feeling of courage and the Narrator fantasized over fighting Dr. Bledsoe, for he betrayed him. His new found courage carried him into the eviction...
Evidence #3 “And I saw myself advancing upon Bledsoe, standing bare of his false humility in the crowded lobby of the Men's House, and seeing him there and him seeing me and ignoring me and me enraged and suddenly shipping out a foot or two of chitterlings, raw, uncleaned and dripping sticky circles on the floor as I shake them in his face.” (page 265)
So What? #3 This is how IM feels about no longer taking what has been given to him. He simply says that there is no reason to hide who he is anymore, because no one is watching. He says that if he were back in the south, with his feelings being the way that they are, then he would stuff them in his face and accuse him of being a chitterling lover in private!
Evidence #4 (1) “I turned away, feeling myself being drawn to the old couple by a warm, dark, rising whirlpool of emotion which I feared. I was wary of what the sight of them crying there on the sidewalk was making me begin to feel. I wanted to leave, but was too ashamed to leave, was rapidly becoming too much a part of it to leave.” (Ellison 271)
So What? #4 When the Narrator saw the older people being evicted from their home and thrown out onto the street so he delivered a speech that rallied up the crowd in protest. The reason he gave this speech and didn't just watch was because of how he was treated back in the South. The white men at the Battle Royale and Dr. Bledsoe disrespected the Invisible Man creating an inequality barrier. These past experiences triggered feelings of empathy towards the older couple because he had been deceived the same way in the past. In a similar sense the invisible man was evicted from his home in the South when Dr. Bledsoe expelled him from college. The reason why Ellison made this connection between the Narrator and the older couple was for them to symbolize his home. The older couple was like a recurring experience to the invisible man and he had to try use his feelings to change the outcome the second time. The speech represented how the Narrator took his feelings of when he was a young man to help change the world.
Evidence #4 (2) "No, no, I heard myself yelling. Black men! Brothers! That's not the way. We're law- abiding. We're a law-abiding people and a slow-to-anger people." (Ellison 275) "Forcing my way quickly through the crowd, I stood on the steps facing those in front, talking rapidly without thought but out of my clashing emotions. We're law-abiding people and a slow-to-anger people... They stopped, listening. Even the white man was startled." (Ellison 275)
So What? #4 The invisible man says "we're law-abiding people" but the older couple was still evicted from their house to show how there is even injustice and inequality in the North. Even though the couple was following the law they were being evicted from their home with their belongings scattered about on the street. It's interesting that Ellison writes "black men! brothers!" This quote comes from before the invisible man joins the Brotherhood but by using the word "brothers" it foreshadows his future career. Ellison wants to illustrate how the speech at the eviction allowed the invisible man to get a new job and progress in his life because the speech was based on the Narrator's past feelings from the South.
Evidence #5 “What are we doing? What is our mission? It’s simple; we are working for a better world for all people. It’s that simple. Too many have been dispossessed of their heritage, and we have banded together in the Brotherhood so as to do something about it.” (Ellison 304)
So What? #5 Brother Jack was the man who introduced the Brotherhood to the Narrator and represented the future. Finally the Invisible Man had moved on with his life by leaving Mary Rambo and finding a job that could help him justify his past. The Brotherhood gave him a voice that he never had back home and he channeled his negative energy into an opportunity to influence the city of Harlem. He fought together with the Brotherhood to stop people from being dispossessed of their heritage just how he was dispossessed from college because he had agreed to Mr. Norton's wishes.
Conclusion Through chapters 12-15 Ellison demonstrates that in order to progress in life, one can use the feelings of the past as a way to create a new life. Just because some past feelings are not pleasant does not mean that one should try to forget them, instead, one should try to use them to their advantage. The Invisible Man uses his past feelings and experiences as a young man to deliver a speech on dispossessions in front of an eviction that later lands him a job with the Brotherhood. He is given a new name and identity all thanks to the motivation he reaped from his feelings of the past, and this new life enabled him to finally make a difference in the world.
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