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A Brief Biography Of Ralph Waldon Ellison

1355 words - 6 pages

Today we are going to talk and expression the feelings and hardship of a man called by the name of Ralph Waldo Ellison. Ralph Waldo Ellison was born on March 1, 1914, in Oklahoma City. His parents were Ida (Brownie) and Lewis Ellison. Ralph was named after the famous New England poet, "Ralph Waldo Emerson." His father (Lewis Ellison) was killed in an car accident when Ralph was only three years old. They was like most kids Ralph's mother had high expectations for her two boys. When he was five his mother (Ida) bought him a small desk and chair with a typewriter for Christmas.
They was evicted out of their home, so they moved into a rent-free housing that had shelves full of books that had ...view middle of the document...

The hard work that was required to reach his dream never fazed him, for he was highly disciplined.
Ellison didn't want nothing to pass by him. He wanted to soak up the sights, sounds, stories, yarns, tales, myths, and cultures that surrounded his unique life style. Such as the blacks, whites and natives. Ellison worked to excel, he wasn't always the most popular boy in school. His friend James Steward remembered that Ellison was "bright and he was studious, but he had a sharp tongue.... He made the rest of us uncomfortable, probably because he knew we weren't as bright as he was, and because he didn't let them forget it.... He was a director of the high-school band and he played tackle on the football team."
Do to the fact that he is fatherless the community substitutes fathers. One such person was J.D. Randolph who was in the boardinghouse when Ralph was born. J.D. Randolph had been one leader who walked from Gallatin, Tennessee, to the Oklahoma Territory; upon his arrival in Oklahoma City in 1889, he founded a school for the blacks. Ellison often accompanied him and worked alongside him as he swept and clean. Ellison would recall white legislators coming into the law library and questioning Randolph on points of law.
Ellison had a job selling newspaper, which brought him into contact with Roscoe Dunjee, editor of the local Black Dispatch. Although at the time he had little interest in writing , Dunjee's courage and dedication would affect him in later years. Another man that strongly influenced Ellison's life was Ludwig Hebestreit, the white conductor of the Oklahoma City Orchestra and band director at the segregated Classen High School. Ralph received private music lessons on his trumpet and Hebetreit treated his young student with upmost respect.
Ellison contributed majority of his high school years helping interpret music, but his involvement was limited by Ida Ellison who still kept a close rein on her son. Theater also played an important role in Deep Second. When white actress Emma Bunting arrived in Oklahoma City, her black maid Miss Clark staged in Ellison learned about the inner workings of the theater and gained insight into British manners and customs.
Throughout his high school years, Ellison never lost the love for reading and was known to have his nose in a book at all times. In his senior year, he began reading the prefaces of George Bernard Shaw and became enamored with Shaw's writings. During his junior year at Douglass and had a cough and couldn't get rid of. He went to the clinic and sat wait among a large number of very ill people; he felt a sense of terror and fear and wanted to capture the moment on paper. The incident became his first vivid memory of drawn to writing.
Upon graduation, Ellison won a state scholarship and decided...

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