Compare and Contrast Battle Royal

In: English and Literature

Submitted By rbccfrdrck
Words 859
Pages 4
Literature: A Reflection of Life

June 20, 2014

“Fiction reveals truth that reality obscures. ” That's powerful. Looking back, how often have you read a piece of literature that really does reveal truth? In the stories “Battle Royal” by Ralph Ellison and “The Birthmark” by Nathaniel Hawthorne I came to a staggering feeling of empathy when it comes to discrimination.

In “Battle Royal” you are taken back to some time in the 1920s or 1930s after the Civil war when slaves were finally free and believed they were equal. In the south and in this story we know that wasn't quite the case. Although he tells the story, you never learn the narrator's name. You can tell he's struggling to find his own identity and is invisible due to his race. There is a constant reoccurring theme of racism and a total insecurity of individual identity.

The narrators grandfather was a slave that was freed. On his deathbed he counsels the narrators father to undermine the whites with “yeses and grins” and “agree 'em to death and destruction” He felt like a traitor to his race and himself by following that advice, but it is what kept him alive. This advice creates a strong fear for the narrator to, in one instance, fight for his life. In other instances the poor boy is stripped of his pride due to his fear of the white men.

It's actually quite heart-wrenching to feel the narrator's inequalities. In the beginning of his fight, there's a blonde dancer who, it would seem, is also struggling for her equality as a woman. I honestly almost didn't recognize it because I was so nervous for what was coming, the actual battle. This really gave me the feeling Ellison was referencing the fight for equality for woman along with black people.

I was somewhat relieved towards the end of this story, due to the narrator having a dream about his grandfather. Towards the end of the dream he…...

Similar Documents

Battle Royal

...“Battle Royal” was first published as a short story which later became the first chapter of the well-received first novel of Ralph Ellison(1913-1994), Invisible Man. “Battle Royal” is the story of the unnamed protagonist, a Black youth who just graduated from high school brought to a meeting of the town’s elite leaders to give his eloquent speech because he is the smartest boy in his school. The youth is proud and eager to give his graduation class speech and prove his ability. The problem is that the audience is composed of White men of the South during the time prior to the struggle for civil rights. Each plays out his part, leaving the horror of racism for all to see. The youth narrator takes on the typical Black role of the time, that of a submissive pleaser. The White men also take on their expected roles. They humiliate the narrator and the other youth who have been invited to the affair. But in so doing, they unwittingly humiliate themselves as well. The youth’s grandfather, lying on his deathbed admits that he feels like a traitor, but prompts his son to give the Whites what they want. Throughout the story, Ellison’s symbols give layers of meaning. The White woman is used just as the Black youth are, to humiliate and denigrate them, and keep them in their places. The woman is symbolic of the thirst the youth has for America and its opportunities. The youth are made to fight a battle royal, a fight between several who struggle until the end. Through all this......

Words: 1334 - Pages: 6

Compare and Contrast

...Compare and Contrast MLB’s Greatest of All-Time Two of the world’s greatest baseball players to have ever lived were Jackie Robinson and Babe Ruth. Both of these men established a career in the game that they both loved so much. Both players had accomplishments that will always remain a part of our history in the sport of baseball. Although both are known as baseball legends, they also offer their differences. Their differences and similarities varied amongst not only their careers but also their personal lives. Throughout this essay, I will explore their beginnings, initial inspirations, careers, and what makes them the legends that they are known as today. Jackie Robinson was born Jack Roosevelt Jackson on January 31, 1919, in Cairo, Georgia. He attended John Muir High School and Pasadena Junior College where he was an excellent athlete and played four sports. It was Jackie’s older brother who inspired him to pursue his talent and passion for athletics. Unlike Robinson, Babe Ruth was from a different part of the nation. He was born George Herman Ruth Jr. on February 6, 1895 in Baltimore, Maryland (Biography.com). When Babe was seven years old, his parents sent him to St. Mary’s Industrial school for boys where he lived until he was 19 years old. While he was at St. Mary’s he developed into a good baseball player. He was a natural as soon as he stepped onto the baseball field with the help of his brother Matthias who helped him master skills. Just as Robinson, Ruth was......

Words: 1064 - Pages: 5

Discrimination and Ignorance in the “Battle Royal”

...Dr. Keaton Am. Lit. 214 12-8-09 Discrimination and Ignorance in the “Battle Royal” The government made it hard for African Americans to lead normal lives in the south, after slavery was abolished until the mid nineteen sixties. This was because there was extreme discrimination and racism towards African Americans by the whites, and the government did not do anything to stop this. There were many discriminatory laws in place called the Jim Crow Laws, which basically made it legal for whites to treat blacks with cruelty. In the short story “Battle Royal” by Ralph Ellison, there are many examples of the cruelties done to blacks by whites. Throughout the story, the white men hurt the protagonist and the other black boys emotionally, psychologically, and physically, and yet the protagonist still feels that blacks should follow the cruel and unjust laws for the good of society. In the beginning of the novel, the white men use a naked stripper to gain control of the protagonist and his group and hurt them psychologically and emotionally. As the African American literature critic Lee states, “ the stripper is a synthetic metaphor of white Mother America, Pocahontas, Martha Washington, the Scarlet Woman—white-fleshed, an object for rape and adoration, a pleasure-object--and yet for this “Nigger” a locus classicus of threat, a taboo, a castration” (Lee 23). This woman is a metaphor for how the government is also controlling the black people’s lives. The stripper is meant as......

Words: 1632 - Pages: 7

Compare and Contrast

...Compare and Contrast Paper It has long been said that the redneck sport of the United States is the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing more formerly known as NASCAR. Some people may not know about the other auto racing series that occasionally comes to the United States to compete. That series is known as Formula 1. NASCAR and Formula 1 have stark differences in where they race, how they race. Did you know that both series average speed is faster than the speed needed for a Boeing 747? A Boeing 747 requires between 150 to 200 miles per hour to take off. Right off the bat, the differences start. One of the biggest differences is the locations that these two series race. NASCAR primary races in the United States but does occasionally race in Mexico and Canada, although they did not during this past year’s season. NASCAR races in 23 cities around the country hitting many of them twice a season (2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series TV Broadcast Schedule). Formula 1 currently races in 19 different countries, spanning four continents and hitting each track only once during the season. NASCAR has an average of 36 races a season, while Formula 1 currently has 20 races a season. The next comparison is the vehicles that are used to provide all of the entertainment value that we see on television on a weekly basis. NASCAR drivers race in a closed wheel, closed driver compartment car. Due to NASCAR’s ongoing commitment to safety and entertainment NASCAR recently developed a......

Words: 645 - Pages: 3

Battle Royal

...Name Course Instructor Institution Date Literary discourse: The importance of Battle Royal Ralph Ellison’s literary piece exemplifies the extreme racial prejudices of the mid twentieth century that Afro-Americans suffered under white supremacy dominance. Battle royal tackles issues of social inequalities in terms of economic empowerment, education, self-identity and racial superiority or lack thereof. Through the main protagonist in the story, the writer manages to bring to the fore the brutal acts of racial segregation and the horrors of a people struggle for self-recognition and identity. The agonizing plight of the young black man, point to the psychological torment that the black race had to endure as he tries to impress the white folks, despite his grandfather’s counsel that their lives was a perpetual war that he has to fight. The story depicts a nameless protagonist trying to define his place among his people and acceptance from the white people. The story if full of symbolism through use of imagery and satire allowing the reader appreciate the magnitude of a class-based society. The cultural differences are played out in the story depicting the superiority of the white people as opposed to the black race. For instance, the young man is invited to give a speech to an all-white audience, but first he is forced into a ‘battle royal’ with his classmates who all happen to be black. The fight is not for accolades for the winner but purely......

Words: 1463 - Pages: 6

Compare and Contrast

...Compare and contrast “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty” and “The Necklace” Dreams, sacrifice, marital unhappiness and escapism are often themes involving men and women in English Literature. Throughout history, stories have been filled with main characters living out fantasies and dreams, hoping for more out of their own lives, only to find they had what they wanted right in front of them, all along. These aforementioned these are the main focuses of the two stories I am going to write about, “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty,” by James Thurber and “The Necklace,” by Guy de Maupassant. The main characters in these two stories are, Walter Mitty, in “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty” and Mathilde Loisel in “The Necklace.” Both characters are dreamers of a different, fancier or exciting life, which ultimately cause problems for each character. This paper will compare and contrast these two stories by showing, although each was written very differently, both are from different time periods, different languages, different social settings, and each have different outcomes, they are still very much the same. In “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty,” it portrays the inner soliloquy of a man’s mind flowing in and out of fantasies as he completes his routine tasks on an otherwise routine day.   Walter Mitty is trapped in an unhappy marriage with an overbearing wife, who runs his life in every moment she is present in the story. Walter’s story begins deep in a fantasy battle,......

Words: 2327 - Pages: 10

Compare and Contrast

...Tuesday/Thursday 10:30-11:45 Compare and Contrast The two pieces of art I've chosen to compare, contrast, and analyze are Woman at the Height of her Beauty, by Kitagawa Utamaro and Mother and Child, by Mary Cassatt. Both pieces are reflective of different societies of the time period in which they were created, and both pieces have a background and deeper meaning that goes beyond what meets the viewers eye. However, the aesthetic appeal varies greatly between the two pieces, as do the ideas they correspond to. Woman at the Height of her Beauty, which was made out of color woodblock print, depicts an Asian woman. The artist used linear movements and minimal decoration to create the woman's form, and in doing so created a simplified yet elegant depiction. Though she is portrayed simply and plainly, her hair pieces and clothing are more elaborate, which draws the viewer's eye to her clothes and accessories rather than the woman. This technique of using vague individual features allows the artist to portray women as a group, rather than an individual woman. The woman's facial expression and the position of her body, namely her hands, which she appears to be stretching, give the impression that she is preparing to do tedious and important tasks. If one were to compare these aspects with the title of the piece, one could come to the conclusion that the artist sees women who work hard and are the most successful to be of the most beauty. This reflects the societal views of......

Words: 751 - Pages: 4

Compare and Contrast

...Comparison and Contrast essay about gender. Most children grow up and develop their own personalities. In this essay, I will indicate the similarities and differences I have found within two toddlers and their characteristics. Taylor a 3-year-old girl and Savien a 2-year-old boy about to turn three. Savien and Taylor are wonderful kids that love to play all the time. Taylor is a quiet, shy, active, happy, organize, and an attentive type of child. She likes to observe people before she plays or talks to them. She likes to sit in the corner while watching TV and she doesn’t speak much. If you don’t ask her if she is hungry she won’t tell you because she is a very introverted child. Furthermore, she likes dolls, and she plays with them carefully. She also likes to play cars with Savien but she always put them back where they belong after she plays with them, unlike Savien. She is a very active child but likes to play quietly unlike Savien who plays loudly. Taylor is a happy child and a good friend of Savien. Savien is a very destructive, aggressive, active, nosy, happy, messy, and talkative child. He plays with his toys recklessly. Every time he plays with his toys they get damaged or lost. He doesn’t care about them but he likes to play with them. He is a very messy child that plays and leaves his toys everywhere. He likes to play in a more aggressive manner than Taylor, punching and fighting more so. He at times plays rough with Taylor and does not understand that he......

Words: 425 - Pages: 2

Compare and Contrast

...Strategies for Persuasion Using Compare and Contrast The two essays that I’ve chosen were “I Want a Wife” by Judy Brady” and my other one was “Sister Flowers” by Maya Angelou. I’ve reread the both of these essays twice just to get the feel of these two essays. In the essay of “I Want a Wife” I looked for the key elements that the Authors had used in this essay. In that essay the author’s purpose was that to show women of how the males treat females in a wrong manner. This is something that maybe all women had been gone through some point in time in their lives, but this is going on in today’s world, it is a relatable subject. It is quoted by Judy Brady that she said in her essay that she wanted all females to think in her message (“those women were being underappreciated, and that she is fed up with it)”. When telling this essay the sound of her tone was I would think that she was angry, but hearing how she had write this essay it seems as if she was calm. My other essay “Sister Flowers” is totally different different from my other essay. In this essay Maya Angelou is an American author, a poet with a remarkable voice telling her stories. When you listen to Maya Angelou tell a story, it almost feels like you’re right there with her, this is a good description essay, and a narrative essay. The purpose of this essay is of revelation; it is quoted that to (reveal the catalyst of her own literary experience, a muse who is a social and racial template for goodness). In the both...

Words: 377 - Pages: 2

Battle Royal

...Battle Royal The story opens with the narrator, who reads about his younger brother named Sonny who has been caught in a heroin bust. The narrator then goes about his day; he is a teacher at a school in Harlem. However, he cannot get his mind off Sonny. He thinks about all the boys in his class, who don’t have bright futures and are most likely doing drugs, just like Sonny. After school, he meets a friend of Sonny’s, who tells him that they will lock him up and make him detox, but eventually he will be let out and be all alone. Originally, the narrator doesn’t write to Sonny. After his daughter Gracie died of polio, he decided to write Sonny a letter. Then Sonny wrote back, so they got in contact again. At this point, we learn how Sonny is related to the narrator—they are brothers. They keep in contact, and after Sonny gets out of jail, he goes to live with the narrator and his family. They eat a family dinner, which then turns into a flashback about their parents. The narrator describes his father, a drunken man, who died when Sonny was fifteen. Sonny and his father had the same privacy; however they did not get along. Sonny was withdrawn and quiet; while their father pretended to be big, tough, and loud-talking. The narrator then thinks back to the last time he saw his mother alive, just before he went off to war (most likely fought in World War II). She told him the story of how his uncle died (was run over by some drunken white kids), how his father was never the same...

Words: 964 - Pages: 4

Compare and Contrast

...Compare and Contrast His/110CA-U.S. History to 1865 02/11/2014 Charles Slater Compare and Contrast In 1607, 104 men survived a journey which would bring them to the American coast. They sailed into the Chesapeake Bay and up a river which they would later name the James. ("America History", 2007). There where many things that were revealed that caused the failure of some colonies and the success of others. From disease to greed and all the other ups and downs that molded America today. Major differences between the British colonies and the French colonies where the greed and the way the two colonies performed actions that made them fruitful in all the endeavors they were making their goals. Take for intense when the British first came over their goals weren’t clearly set out and endorsed by companies that did not well equip the people they sent over very well, which made it so colonist were very unprepared and met catastrophe. The goals that the British companies had set where small colonies, based for trade and they wanted fur and other agricultural items. The British had little to no regard for the Indians land and saw it as property that could be bought and sold, The British also believed that the land was their God given right and it was their job to use the land. They did trade with the Indians but didn’t see the major uses for the local understanding. The French on the other had came over and set a major problem for the British. The French colonist...

Words: 431 - Pages: 2

Compare and Contrast

...Compare and Contrast ENGL 102-C04: Composition and Literature Spring C 2015 APA Thesis Statement and Outline “The Most Dangerous Game” and “The Child by Tiger” are two short stories that are different in some ways as well as they have some aspects in common, both characters portray good and evil personalities. The twists in these stories will make one’s imagination run wild and they have the ability to entertain the mind. I. Introduction: The Most Dangerous Game and The Child by Tiger both character had a portrayed good and evil. II. The Most Dangerous Game short story by Richard Connell A. Major plot was to hunt human. B. To outsmart everyone he hunted. C. Thought he could control his destiny. III. The Child by Tiger short story by Thomas Wolfe A. Major plot no one is perfect B. How one can be easily misled by not knowing God for yourself? C. See both sides of good and evil. IV. Exodus 20:13, “Thou shalt not kill”. V. Conclusion Introduction “The Most Dangerous Game” by Richard Connell and “The Child by Tiger” by Thomas Wolfe were meant for two different audiences, the saved and sinner. By the end of both stories one will quickly realize that both characters had killer instincts. Both stories fall in a fiction novel category.......

Words: 1312 - Pages: 6

Compare and Contrast

...John Nicolet June 5, 2015 Compare and Contrast 1. Compare and contrast the Magna Carta to the U.S. Constitution. A.The 6th amendment of the Constitution reads "In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjpy the right to be confronted with the witness against him." Also it was in the Magna Carta that "No freeman shall be taken or imprsioned or exiled or in any waydestroyrd except by the lawful judgment of his peers or by the law of the land. B. In Paragraph 29 of the Magna Carta it reads as follows, "No freeman is to be taken or imprisoned or disseised of his free tenement or of his liberties or free customs, or outlawed or exiled or in any way ruined, nor will we go against such a man or send against him save by lawful judgement of his peers or by the law of the land. To no-one will we sell or deny of delay right or justice. It reads the same in Amendment 6 that " In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial..wherein the crime shall have been committed." 2. Compare and contrast the English bill of rights of 1689 and the U.S. Constitution. A.The Bill creates separation of powers, limits the powers of the king and queen, enhances the democratic election and bolsters freedom of speech as well in the Constitution it talks about the seperation of power of each branch of the government. For example in Article 3 Section 2 talks about the Judical branches power and powers that the Supreme......

Words: 701 - Pages: 3

Compare and Contrast

...GE 117 Compare and Contrast Essay 05/20/2014 Marriage vs. Living Together This essay intends to identify some differences on marriage versus living single. In more recent generations, men and women have argued this amongst each other for what seems like eternity. Traditionally, a man meets a woman or vice versa, they get to know each other then eventually decide to get married and live their lives together. There seems to be a recent trend toward people staying single. I am one hundred percent certain that every man and woman has lived the single life at one point or the other and that lifestyle came with many ups and downs. Freedom in ones’ personal space is probably the greatest selling point of being single. No one can truly explain the joy in having the freedom to leave and return home whenever they chose to. Being able to go out whenever and wherever you want is an added bonus. Being single offers people the idea of non-commitment so they can be free to hang out with whomever they desired or date many different people. Being single may be a viable option when it comes to personal finances. Usually single people even single parents do not spend a lot of money on food as such. Frozen dinners or quick to prepare meals like macaroni and cheese are probably on a single person’s menu at home. A single person normally rents an apartment or room as compared to owning a house. Depending on the State in which a single person lives, there may be tax breaks that would profit...

Words: 571 - Pages: 3

Compare and Contrast

...Compare and Contrast Calla Erickson HUM\176 12-16-11 Lavon Axia College The breaking news that I found on all three web sites were, the Penn State scandal Although this story disgusts me, it is the only one I could find on all three web sites. After reviewing this information I have found that the stories on Msnbc.com and Foxnews. com are very similar. Cnn.com has a slightly different approach to “spreading the word” I also noticed that with Cnn the story is a little different than on Msnbc and Fox. It seems like Cnn might have heard different information than Msnbc and Fox as it is stated differently on all web sites. Cnn seems like a very good web site to go to if you want good reliable information. I appreciate how they tell the story how it is, and they do not seem to be biased with their information. I also like how they tell the whole story instead of jumping into the middle of what has allegedly happened. I like how Cnn uses their approach to the breaking news stories, they do not seem like they are taking sides with anyone although im sure no one would be taking sides with the person in question. Msnbc seems to tell the story well too. I think they tried to get the story out sooner rather than taking their time to make sure they have all of the information they need. I like how Msnbc does not seem bias. They tell the information the way it is supposed to be told, by not......

Words: 443 - Pages: 2

Under the Dome | The Town Where Only I Am Missing (Movie) | 胜利足球