Thursday, February 18, 2010

History - African American - Today is Toni Morrison's Birthday

Today is Toni Morrison's 79th Birthday

Writer and editor. Born Chloe Anthony Wofford on February 18, 1931, in Lorain, Ohio. Considered one of the best contemporary novelists, she graduated from Howard University in 1953 and continued her education at Cornell University where she received a master of fine arts degree in 1955. After graduating from Cornell, she taught English at Texas Southern University and at Howard University.

Ms. Morrison left academia in 1965, taking a job as a senior editor for Random House in New York City. Her first novel, The Bluest Eye, was published in 1970 and told the story of a young African-American girl who believes her incredibly difficult life would be better if only she had blue eyes. She continued to explore the African-American experience in its many forms and time periods in such works as Sula (1973), Song of Solomon (1977), and Beloved (1987), which won the 1988 Pulitzer Prize for fiction. Morrison developed a strong following among both readers and critics whom fell for her lyrical style, sharp observations, and vibrant storytelling.

Morrison became a professor at Princeton University in 1989 and continued to produce great works. In recognition of her contributions to her field, she received the 1993 Nobel Prize in Literature, making her the first African American to be selected for the award. The next year, her novel Jazz was published, and she established a special workshop for writers and performers known as the Princeton Atelier.

Along with her novels Paradise (1998) and Love (2003), Morrison wrote several children's books, including The Big Box (1999), The Book of Mean People (2002), and The Ant or the Grasshopper? (2003), with her son Slade.

In 2006, she announced she was retiring from her post at Princeton. That year, the New York Times Book Review named Beloved the best novel of the past 25 years.

Married to Harold Morrison from 1958 to 1964, Morrison has two sons—Harold and Slade. She lives in Princeton, New Jersey, and Upstate New York.


At some point in life the world's beauty becomes enough. You don't need to photograph, paint or even remember it. It is enough. –Toni Morrison

Happy Birthday to Toni Morrison who has given many hours of enjoyment to those of us who have read her books.

1 comment:

karima said...

love her!...FYI: didja know THE BLUEST EYE is on stage now at the african american cultural center through march bizzy i may not see it.....