Avant-Garde

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"Nor do I know whether accepting that lesson has placed me in the rear or in the avant garde."

This quote stuck out to me in particular because it is one of the few times throughout the book that the narrator and the author seem to mesh for a moment. The Avant Garde movement was a style of art and especially literature that focused on pushing the norm and breaking tradition. It often involved elaborate sexual tension, homosexuality, or simply topics such as domestic abuse which, although they may have happened often, were always kept behind closed doors.

Simply off the top of my head, I can't think of any other blatent references to literary or artistic movements off of the top of my head. Also, based solely on my knowledge of the narrator, I'm surprised that he would recognize the Avant Garde momenet. After all, he is only semi well educated. Still, it's more surprising because movements are generally named after they are over. People didn't wake up one day and say "Today the middle ages are over and it is now the Renessaince." The fact that Ellison would refer to a movement still going on suprises me.

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