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Battle Royal by Ralph Ellison is about a boy that is trying to survive and get an education in a white mans world He finds himself faced with several obstacles that he must overcome in order to deliver his speech He knows that he has to deliver his speech in order to get into the white mans good graces so that he can attend college This story isnt just talking about one boy and his struggles it is about the black people in general This can be seen throughout the story through all of the symbolism The obstacles symbolize the white mans cruelty and violence that white man directed toward black people The boys grandfather told him that he had to do what the white man wanted him to do so that he would have the chance to go to college Before his grand father died he told the boy to live with your head in the lions mouth I want you to overcome em with yeses undermine em with grins agree em to death and destruction let em swoller you till they vomit or bust wide open 209 He was trying to tell him to do what the whites want him to do so that he could have the chance to get ahead in a world where only whites could During slavery and sometime afterward when a black man wanted to get ahead he had to be the white mans lap dog If he openly rebelled and tried to accomplish his lifes ambitions be would be beaten or even killed His grandfather gave him good advice to help him excel About the worst thing that you could do as a black man in the time period that this story was written was to look at a white woman in a way that was lustful In the story the boy along with a few other boys were taken where a group of the
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