Ralph Ellison





Ralph Ellison

Author profile


born
in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, The United States
March 01, 1914

died
April 16, 1994

gender
male

genre

influences
Hemingway, Emerson, Thoreau, Whitman, Louis Armstrong, Richard Wright,...more


About this author

Ralph Ellison was a scholar and writer. He was born Ralph Waldo Ellison in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, named by his father after Ralph Waldo Emerson. Ellison was best known for his novel Invisible Man, which won the National Book Award in 1953. He also wrote Shadow and Act (1964), a collection of political, social and critical essays, and Going to the Territory (1986). Ellison references music in his novel having once thought of becoming a composer himself - he took a few lessons from an early admirer of Schoenberg, Wallingford Riegger, but stopped. Research by Lawrence Jackson, one of Ellison's biographers, has established that he was born a year earlier than had been previously thought.


Average rating: 3.80 · 88,930 ratings · 2,983 reviews · 28 distinct works · Similar authors
Invisible Man
3.8 of 5 stars 3.80 avg rating — 86,343 ratings — published 1952 — 4 editions
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Juneteenth
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3.59 of 5 stars 3.59 avg rating — 758 ratings — published 1999 — 18 editions
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Flying Home and Other Stories
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3.84 of 5 stars 3.84 avg rating — 306 ratings — published 1996 — 9 editions
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Shadow and Act
4.07 of 5 stars 4.07 avg rating — 269 ratings — published 1964 — 8 editions
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The Collected Essays
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4.32 of 5 stars 4.32 avg rating — 155 ratings — published 1995 — 5 editions
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Living with Music: Jazz Wri...
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4.03 of 5 stars 4.03 avg rating — 120 ratings — published 2001 — 2 editions
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Battle Royal
3.91 of 5 stars 3.91 avg rating — 112 ratings
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Going to the Territory
4.16 of 5 stars 4.16 avg rating — 57 ratings — published 1986 — 6 editions
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Trading Twelves: The Select...
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3.81 of 5 stars 3.81 avg rating — 47 ratings — published 2000 — 5 editions
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Three Days Before the Shoot...
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3.88 of 5 stars 3.88 avg rating — 34 ratings — published 2010 — 6 editions
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More books by Ralph Ellison…
“What and how much had I lost by trying to do only what was expected of me instead of what I myself had wished to do?”
Ralph Ellison, Invisible Man

“Life is to be lived, not controlled; and humanity is won by continuing to play in face of certain defeat.”
Ralph Ellison, Invisible Man

“I am an invisible man. 
No I am not a spook like those who haunted Edgar Allen Poe: 
Nor am I one of your Hollywood movie ectoplasms.
I am a man of substance, of flesh and bone, fiber and liquids
- and I might even be said to possess a mind. 
I am invisible, simply because people refuse to see me.”
Ralph Ellison

Polls

October 2014 New School Poll

 
  27 votes, 20.1%

1925, The Trial by Franz Kafka, pages 276
 
  21 votes, 15.7%

 
  12 votes, 9.0%

1920, The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton, pages 305
 
  10 votes, 7.5%

 
  10 votes, 7.5%

 
  9 votes, 6.7%

1952, Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison, 581 pages
 
  8 votes, 6.0%

1966, Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes, pages 311
 
  7 votes, 5.2%

1957, The Midwich Cuckoos by John Wyndham, pages 220
 
  5 votes, 3.7%

 
  5 votes, 3.7%

 
  5 votes, 3.7%

1974, Ragtime by E.L. Doctorow, pages 336
 
  4 votes, 3.0%

1952, The Birds by Daphne du Maurier, pages 75
 
  4 votes, 3.0%

 
  2 votes, 1.5%

 
  2 votes, 1.5%

 
  2 votes, 1.5%

1980. Aztec by Gary Jennings, pages 754
 
  1 vote, 0.7%

1903, The Ambassadors by Henry James, pages 528
 
  0 votes, 0.0%

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