Toni Morrison was an American novelist who explored the multiple aspects of black identity in America. What made her work remarkable in addition to her sharp observation and critical reflection, was her ability to tell stories that had both an engaging narrative and the capacity to speak of the nuances of a society where race mattered.
She was the first African-American woman to have won the Nobel Prize in Literature. In her career as an author and an ardent advocate of anti-race movement, she authored eleven novels and essay collections.
Her works were a combination of critical and commercial success. Her work ‘The Bluest Eye’(1970) talked about her own growing up years during the Great Depression in America and narrated the story of how young black women negotiated in a world where racism was the most significant societal force that one had to reckon with. Morrison was awarded the Pulitzer for her work ‘Beloved.’
It was in 1993 that Morrison won the Nobel Prize for Literature.
Morrison’s distinctive style echoed with black women who read her stories but also with all those who dreamt of an egalitarian social order. Her words were filled with authentic flavours of African folklore and mythology.
Her lucid articulation, nuanced detailing and strong women protagonists added to her popularity as one of the most widely read Afro-American authors of our times.
Her death marks an important loss for all her readers and the world of literary creations in general because Toni Morrison was a storyteller who evoked our conscience and stirred our moral imaginations. There will never be another author as lucid, poignant and powerful as Toni Morrison.