Remembering Toni Morrison
“If you look at the world as a brutal game, then you bump into the mystery of the tree-shaped scar. There seems to be such a thing as grace, such a thing as beauty, such a thing as harmony. All of which are wholly free and available to us.” Your life was our gift, #ToniMorrison pic.twitter.com/wcD7w9zKYp— Ava DuVernay (@ava) August 6, 2019
In 1988, Toni Morrison told talk show host, Charlie Rose, she had no interest in making white characters more central to her stories. "I've spent my entire writing life trying to make sure that the white gaze was not the dominant one in any of my books," she said." Throughout her life, Morrison challenged how African Americans were depicted in writing by dismantling narratives rooted in stereotypes while unearthing the uncensored lives of the voiceless. The first African-American woman to win the Nobel Prize, she inspired generations of African American novelists, filmmakers, and creatives, leaving a lasting impact on society. On Monday night, the legendary Morrison passed away at the age of 88. We highlight her many contributions below:
1931 - Morrison, original name Chloe Anthony Wofford, was born in Lorain, Ohio.
1953 - She graduated with her bachelor's degree from Howard University.
1955 - Morrsion earned her masters from Cornell University.
1957-64 - After teaching at Texas Southern for two years, Morrison taught at Howard,
1965 - Morrison became the first black woman senior editor in the fiction department at Random House.
1970 - Morrison’s first book,”The Bluest Eye”, was published.
1973 - "Sula" is published.
1977 - "Song of Solomon" is published.
1981 - "Tar Baby" is published.
1984 -1989 - Serves as the Albert Schweitzer Professor of the Humanities at the State University of New York in Albany.
1987 - "Beloved" is published.
1988 - Is awarded the Pulitzer Prize for "Beloved."
1989-2006 - Serves as the Robert F. Goheen Chair in the Council of the Humanities at Princeton University.
1993 - Is awarded a Nobel Prize in Literature.
1998 - The film version of "Beloved," starring Oprah Winfrey and Danny Glover, is released.
2000 - Is awarded the National Humanities Medal.
2001 - Is given the Pell Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Arts.
2001 - Is given the Enoch Pratt Free Library Lifetime Literary Achievement Award.
2004 - "Remember: The Journey to School Integration" is published.
2004 - Is awarded the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work-Fiction for "Love."
2005 - Is given the Coretta Scott King Award for "Remember: The Journey to School Integration."