‘Invisible Man’ Book Ban: North Carolina To Reconsider Decision

The North Carolina’s Randolph County Board of Education is reconsidering it’s ban on the book Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison.

The Invisible Man book ban caused a national outcry last week when the board decided that Ellison’s book was “too much” for teenagers. One board member, Gary Mason, even said he “didn’t find any literary value” in the book.

Needless to say, the public disagreed.

NPR called Invisible Man, which one the National Book Award in 1952, the “most famous novels dealing with black identity — and black invisibility — in America.”

The North Carolina board said that it would reconsider the book ban. The board didn’t say why it was reconsidering the ban but it may have to do with the fact that it’s “literary value” has been proven over and over again. Salon notes that in addition to the National Book Award, it was also named one of the “Books that Shaped America” by the Library of Congress.

Here is the opening line from the famous novel:, “I am an invisible man. No, I am not a spook like those who haunted Edgar Allan 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, understand, simply because people refuse to see me.”

The Asheboro Courier-Tribune said that the Randolph County Board of Education would hold a special meeting on Wednesday, September 25, to discuss the Invisible Man book ban.