what is inversion?
Inversion is when a writer chooses to deliberately invert a stereotype. It means to 'turn upside down'. The writer changes the reader's perception by changing the normal view of things.
In the novel Noughts and Crosses, the author Malorie Blackman inverts the stereotype by creating a racial society where the blacks have all the power. This is the opposite of reality as we know it.
By inverting the stereotype, Blackman allows the reader to imagine how racism would feel if they were the ones being discriminated against. The blacks have power and the whites have none. The blacks live in expensive houses and the white people live in shacks. She offers the reader a unique opportunity to understand the frustrations of being part of an under-class and to be inside the mind of the characters in order to see how love transcends race but society prevents change.
"In a hole in the ground, there lived a hobbit." by JRR Tolkein. (1937)
By inverting the order of the words in this sentence, Tolkein created a mythical quality to the setting. The normal way of saying this would be to say "A hobbit lived in a hole in the ground." However, Tolkein has named the location first and the character second as a way of making the place sound important and magical. It throws emphasis onto the "hobbit" character as well by placing the new word (breed) at the end of the sentence, so that the reader is drawn from the familiar to the unknown.