Who Is The Protagonist In Battle Royal

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The two stories Tan’s “Two Kinds” and Ellison’s “Battle Royal” both portray the protagonist coming of age, where by the end of the story, they reflect backward and feel different than how they did in the beginning. In “Battle Royal”, the protagonist reflects back that” I was naive. I was looking for myself and asking everyone except myself questions which I, and only I, could answer.” (Ellison, 294). In the beginning of the story the protagonist wishes more than anything to become more than his fellow brethren are and to get into college and make something of himself. He feels this is the most important thing, and he must achieve this at all costs. He is invited to speak and tricked into participating in the battle royal, he brushes it…show more content…
Even while he is being pummeled in the ring all he can think of is getting to be able to recite his speech as he recalls, “because I felt that only these men could judge truly my ability, and now this stupid clown was ruining my chances” (Ellison, 299). The protagonist feels that the ends justify the means. In his naïve youthfulness he justifies humiliation he is made to suffer, and acknowledges to himself “I had no dignity. I stumbled about like a baby or a drunken man.”(Ellison, 299). Even when he finally is allowed to recite his speech, the men are chatting and laughing amongst one another as if he is an invisible man. He relegates himself to the fact that his future lays in appeasing and earning the good will of the white man and in doing so gives up his dignity. In the end, the protagonist now much older, realizes the foolishness of his youth. That that was the message his grandfather was telling him. To never let them take your humanity and dignity. As his grandfather said on his deathbed, "Son, after I'm gone I want you to keep up the good fight. I never told you, but our life is a war and I have been a traitor all my

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