Invisible Man

[By Kenton Rambsy]

On yesterday, I posted on what I learned about Toni Morrison’s Beloved. Most of the novels in the “100 Novels Collection” have Wikipedia pages. The level of content development varies, though.
Today, I continue the series by focusing on Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man. My intent with these posts is to better understand the influence Wikipedia has on African American novels and authors.

What I learned about Invisible Man from Wikipedia
  • I learned that the novel won Ellison the National Book Award in 1953.
  • I learned that in 1998, the Modern Library ranked Invisible Man nineteenth on its list of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century.
  • I learned that Time magazine included the novel in its TIME 100 Best English-language Novels from 1923 to 2005.
  • I learned that the novel was originally published by Random House.
  • I learned that the novel’s second edition is approximately 581 pages.
  • I learned that in his introduction to the 30th Anniversary Edition of Invisible Man, Ellison says that he started writing the book in a barn in Waitsfield, Vermont in the summer of 1945 while on sick leave from the Merchant Marine.
  • I learned that in an interview in The Paris Review 1955, Ellison states that the book took five years to complete with one year off for what he termed an “ill-conceived short novel.”
  • I learned the novel’s plot introduction.
  • I learned the novels plot summary.
  • I learned the major themes of the novel.
  • I learned that the novel’s “Battle Royal” chapter was originally published as a short story in 1948, three years before the novel was published.
  • I was referred to other Wikipedia pages that had were linked with the content/themes in the novel or Ellison: African American literature, Black Existentialism, Juneteenth (novel), Three Days Before the Shooting