Ralph Ellison

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Ralph Ellison (1914-1994)[1] was an American author. His works include Invisible Man (1952), which won a National Book Award.[2]

Life and Works

Ellison was born black in Oklahoma City on March 1, 1914.[3] As a child, he lost his father and lived in poverty, but was able to read magazines from houses that his mother cleaned and visited a local public library.[4] He attended Tuskegee University, studying music, but left for New York City, where black novelist Richard Wright encouraged him to write, and he wrote The Invisible Man.[5] Contradictory to Wright's characters, Ellison's characters in The Invisible Man were intelligent and self-aware.[6] He died of pancreatic cancer on April 16, 1994.[7]

See also