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Nobel Laureate Toni Morrison Dies at 88

Nobel Laureate Toni Morrison Dies at 88


Toni Morrison, a literary lion whose narrative voice soared from deep tenderness to searing power in “Beloved,” “Song of Solomon” and other novels, died Monday night in New York, her publisher Alfred A. Knopf said. She was 88 years old.

Ms. Morrison, who had a career as an editor before turning to fiction, created unforgettable worlds that chronicled the African-American experience. She collected literature’s highest honors, including the
Nobel Prize in literature—the first black woman to do so—as well as the Pulitzer Prize for fiction in 1988.In her 1993 Nobel address, Ms. Morrison said: “The vitality of language lies in its ability to limn the particular, notional and doable lives of its speakers, readers, writers. though its poise is typically in displacing expertise it's not a substitute for it. It arcs toward the place wherever that means might lie.”

Remembering writer

Read earlier WSJ stories regarding the Nobel Laureate.
  • writer, Unseen and Unsung: a quick Oral History
  • Toni Morrison: The items I Am’ Review: AN Infectious Spirit
A majestic figure United Nations agency embraced her role on the planet stage, Ms. Morrison conjointly was a faithful teacher, a champion of libraries-and AN exuberant mortal.

"People were frightened of her," same author Fran Lebowitz, United Nations agencycounted Ms. Morrison among her nighest friends."I assume she needed them to be. She was terribly imlosing  in camera she was terribly fun!” the 2 authors met in 1978, at a reading they gave in the big apple. Ms. Lebowitz had simply printed “Metropolitan Life,” and Ms. Morrison had printed her third novel, “Song of male monarch,” in 1977. Ms. Lebowitz recalled worrying beforehand that whereas she favourite Ms. Morrison’s work, the 2 writers appeared AN odd pairing for the event. however it had been
such successful, she and Ms. Morrison joked regarding taking their act on the road sort of a variety showcouple.

Born in Lorain, Ohio, on Feb. 18, 1931, and raised in modest circumstances, Ms. Morrison read ceaselessly as a child and tucked images of the family life around her into her memory. In addition to her career as an editor, she taught at a number of institutions, including Princeton University.

Ms. Morrison published her debut novel, “The Bluest Eye,” in 1970, with the New York house Holt, Rinehart and Winston. She followed that with “Sula,” in 1973, at Knopf. Robert Gottlieb, who edited her work
at Knopf from “Sula” on, recalled Ms. Morrison as a supremely gifted and confident writer who worked on first drafts in pencil—and enjoyed tugs of war over a particular form of punctuation.

“We had extraordinarily harmonious and happy professional relations from start to finish,” Mr. Gottlieb said Tuesday. “Our only disagreements were about commas.”

With “Sula,” Ms. Morrison’s star began to surge. She embraced the exposure that came with being a literary figure, and watched her works reach an even wider audience through the screen adaptation of her Pulitzer-winning “Beloved.” Among the movie’s stars were Oprah Winfrey, who had Ms. Morrison as a guest on her television show. On Instagram on Tuesday, Ms. Winfrey remembered the writer as “our conscience. Our seer. Our truth-teller. She was a magician with language, who understood the Power of words.”

A torrent of other tributes poured out on social media. Producer Shonda Rhimes, of “Scandal” and “Grey’s Anatomy” fame, posted on Twitter, “She made me understand “writer” was a fine profession. I grew up wanting to be only her.  Dinner together with her was an evening i'll always remember. Rest, Queen.”
Award-winning playwright Lynn Nottage wrote on Twitter, “Toni Morrison gave life to this nerdy Black girl, who found refuge in her beautiful stories.  She was a present  to the planet little doubt that she is going to create waves wherever ever this next voyage takes her. #tonimorrison.”

Elizabeth Gilbert, author of “Eat Pray Love” and other best-sellers, said on Instagram, “My heart hurts. Her greatness was absolute. Her words changed worlds.Her work continuously belonged to the immortal, and her name can ne'er be forgotten.
I bow down nowadays to the current literary and ethical big.” She additionally recalled the primary time she met Ms. Morrison.Film director Spike Lee wrote on Instagramthat Ms.Morrison’s “soul, spirit is as big as you get” and encouraged followers to “read her work again or for the very 1st time.”In 2012, Barack Obama presented Ms. Morrison with the Presidential Medal of Freedom. 

On Tuesday, former White House photographer Pete Souza posted an image of President Obama with the author moments before the ceremony. Within hours, Mr. Obama posted the same image on Twitter, writing: “Toni Morrison was a national treasure, as good a storyteller, as captivating, in person as she was on the page.”

Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am,” a documentary released in June, profiled Ms. Morrison and how she tapped her life’s experience for her
writing. “Ultimately I knew, that words have power,” Ms. Morrison says in the film, which was directed by Timothy Greenfield-Sanders, who knew the author for almost 40 years.

On Tuesday, PEN America said Ms. Morrison’s “unmatched ability to use story to kindle empathy and rouse the imaginations of millions to contemplate lived experiences other than their own has transformed our culture.”  The organization also set up an online page,
where members paid tribute to Ms. Morrison. Among them, Margaret Atwood praised Ms. Morrison as “a giant of her times and ours.”


Nobel Laureate Toni Morrison Dies at 88 Nobel Laureate Toni Morrison Dies at 88 Reviewed by News world 24 on August 07, 2019 Rating: 5

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