Publication Date: June 14, 1994
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Invisible Man is a milestone in American literature, a book that has continued to engage readers since its appearance in 1952.A first novel by an unknown writer, it remained on the bestseller list for sixteen weeks, won the National Book Award for fiction, and established Ralph Ellison as one of the key writers of the century.The nameless narrator of the novel describes growing up in a black community in the South, attending a Negro college from which he is expelled, moving to New York and becoming the chief spokesman of the Harlem branch of "the Brotherhood," and retreating amid violence and confusion to the basement lair of the Invisible Man he imagines himself to be.The book is a passionate and witty tour de force of style, strongly influenced by T.S. Eliot's The Waste Land, Joyce, and Dostoevsky.
Charles Johnson recieved the National Book Award for "Middle Passage" in 1990. Currently the S. Wilson and Grace M. Pollock Endowed Professor of Creative Writing at the University of Washington, he lives in Seattle with his wife Joan, and their two children. "Dreamer" is his fifth work of fiction.
Ellison's exploration of race and identity won the National Book Award in 1953 and has been called one of the best novels of the 20th century. More at NPR.org
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