Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Black OdysseysThe Homeric Odyssey in the African Diaspora since 1939$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Justine McConnell

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199605002

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199605002.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use (for details see www.oxfordscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 23 February 2019

Invisible Odysseus and the Cyclops: Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man

Invisible Odysseus and the Cyclops: Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man

(p.70) (p.71) 2 Invisible Odysseus and the Cyclops: Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man
Black Odysseys

Justine McConnell

Oxford University Press

Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man (1952) was published just two years before the American Civil Rights Movement began in earnest. Positioning itself at the centre of a triangle of ancient classical literature, the canon of nineteenth- and twentieth-century literature, and African-American folklore, its critical reception was starkly divided, often along racial and chronological lines. The novel’s engagement with the Homeric trickster Odysseus runs in tandem with that of the trickster of African-American folklore, Brer Rabbit. This chapter demonstrates how Ellison’s literary and folkloric influences are exhibited within the novel, and used to engage with the contemporary political situation to profound effect.

Keywords:   Ellison, Invisible Man, Brer Rabbit, folklore, identity, trickster

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .