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Invisible Man

Invisible Man


by Ralph Ellison

Brother Tod Clifton Timeline and Summary

  • Clifton arrives late to a Brotherhood meeting. He has a cut on his face and says that he had a scuffle with Ras the Exhorter.
  • Clifton supports the narrator's idea of strengthening the fight against evictions in Harlem.
  • Ras's men crash the Brotherhood's first street speech. Clifton gets in a fight with Ras and is almost stabbed by his knife.
  • Clifton hears Ras call him a slave to the white enslavers of the Brotherhood, calling him a traitor to the black community. Clifton responds with his fists.
  • Clifton doesn't recognize someone who's in the Brotherhood and gets in a fight with him.
  • Clifton goes missing for weeks.
  • Clifton stands on the street corner peddling a paper Sambo doll that he puppeteers with an invisible string. He claims that the doll will bring joy to people's lives.
  • Clifton runs around the corner when the police arrive. He continues to stay one step ahead of them until he throws a series of punches.
  • Clifton is shot by a police officer. He falls forward, bleeding on the ground for the public to see.
  • The narrator holds a public funeral for Clifton that attracts black supporters from all of Harlem.