Remembering Toni Morrison, the legendary writer

toni-morrison

“Your life is already artful—waiting, just waiting for you to make it art.”

– Toni Morrison

An inspirational figure and prolific writer who fearlessly voiced the African-American experience, Toni Morrison passed away on Monday, August 5, 2019 at the age of 88. She died in Montefiore Medical Center in New York due to complications from pneumonia.

Born in 1931 as Chloe Ardelia Wofford, Morrison was raised in an Ohio steel town called Lorain in a family that was devoted to black culture. Morrison’s own love for this culture is quite evident in her works. She wrote about the black American experience at a time when society was unjust and expressed her opinions on topics that were rarely talked upon. Her novels portrayed black characters as protagonists in a literary era when the world was seen through white people’s eyes. Morrison wrote in a style that she described to the New York Times in 2015 as “writing without the white gaze”.

Morrison’s narrative genius and emotionally intense novels won her various honours throughout her career. She became the first black woman to win the Nobel Prize in Literature when she was awarded the title in 1993. Her novel Beloved (1987), based on the true story of a slave who kills her own infant daughter to save her from a future in slavery, won her a Pulitzer Price for Fiction. She won the Coretta Scott King Award in 2005 for her historical work Remember: The Journey to School Integration (2004) that emphasized on the hardships of black students during the historical events of desegregation of the American school system. Morrison received the U.S. Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2012.

Many are mourning Morrison’s death, expressing their gratitude towards the legacy she left behind. Television producer Shonda Rhimes tweeted: “She made me understand ‘writer’ was a fine profession. I grew up wanting to be only her. Dinner with her was a night I will never forget. Rest, Queen”.

Oprah Winfrey, who also acted as the lead character for the film adaptation of Beloved, said, “She was our conscience. Our seer. Our truth-teller. She was a magician with language, who understood the Power of words. She used them to roil us, to wake us, to educate us and help us grapple with our deepest wounds and try to comprehend them […] She was Empress-Supreme among writers. Long may her WORDS reign.”

Yatra Archives

https://creativeyatra.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Netflix.Com_.jpg Why Netflix clicks with audiences and filmmakers alike

Streaming platforms like Netflix have enabled new cinema to emerge in exciting ways and these often turn out to be great alternatives to mainstream cinema. What makes this phenomenon possible? We explore. I’m 10 minutes into watching Nanette on Netflix…

https://creativeyatra.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Heritage-homes-in-Ahmedabad-Host-Airbnb-Guests.jpg Heritage homes in Ahmedabad host Airbnb guests

Check out some highly rated heritage Airbnb properties in Ahmedabad that are more than a century old but don’t cost a fortune!  Enjoy the basic amenities of a hotel while you revel in the local cuisine, colour and hospitality. The…

https://creativeyatra.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Shubigi-Rao-Art.jpg Shubigi Rao selected to curate the fifth edition of Kochi-Muziris Biennale in 2020

Let’s know Shubigi Rao, who has recently been selected as the curator for the 2020 Kochi Muziris Biennale, for her “exceptional acumen and inventive sensibilities” The format of the art biennale to showcase contemporary visual art, across the world is modeled on…

https://creativeyatra.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Dr-Yatin-Desai-Orthopaedic-surgeon.jpg The call of the mountains: orthopaedic Dr Yatin Desai’s advice on trekking

In this piece 64 year old Dr Yatin Desai, shares with CY his inspiring story of how to scale towering mountains with utmost ease and how this life adventure activity can shape human character and health. Chances are high that…