Invisible Man

I’ve put off reading this classic for many years; my past bookmark was on page 20, a Southwest Airlines napkin celebrating their 30th anniversary (2001). The book is obviously about plumbing the depths of identity; who am I, who am I in relation to my race and other races and other individuals. The narrator remains nameless throughout the book, and yet takes on an alternate, unnamed name and identity during his proselytizing period of the Brotherhood.
The narrator fully embraces his love of baked yams, a clearly Southern taste that he has been ashamed of and bemoans, “What and how much had I lost by trying to do only what was expected of me instead of what I myself had wished to do? What a waste, what a senseless waste!”
From there he goes on to give a speech riling up the neighborhood to protect the elderly couple that is being evicted into the snow; amidst their scattered belongings on the street he finds Free Papers letting the man’s ancestors out of slavery.
The transition of a young man from serious student in the South to attempting to find work in NYC (duped by letters from the college president that warn the recipient not to give him a job), working in a paint factory for a day making Ultra White paint and getting injured when a valve explodes (the injury makes him forget his name), convalescing at Mary’s house, running up debts he gets Brotherhood money to pay back, his stint as a big shot speaker, then back to the slums and streets of Harlem.