Toni Morrison was born on February 18, 1931. She was raised in Lorain, Ohio—a city filled with diversity. Through storytelling, her family taught her to love and appreciate black culture. It is where her love of literature bloomed. And why most of her fiction-based novels follow the lives and experiences of African Americans.
Toni Morrison’s Career in Literature
In 1953, Toni Morrison received a Bachelor’s from Howard University. Two years later, in 1955, she earned a Master’s from Cornell University. Soon after, she began a career in teaching. She has previously been an instructor at Texas Southern University, Howard University, Princeton University, and State University of New York.
Toni Morrison is also known for her time she spent working as a Fiction Editor at Random House.
Awards and Published Fictional Books
Toni Morrison is one of the most decorated African American authors. In 1977, she received a NBCC (National Book Critics Circle) fiction award for her novel, Song of Solomon. In 1988, she received the Pulitzer Prize for Beloved. The novel was adapted to screen in 1998, casting famous actors—Oprah Winfrey, Danny Glover, Thandie Newton, and Kimberly Elise.
In 1993, Toni Morrison was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature, and a Coretta Scott King Book Award in 2005. She later went on to receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom, complimented by President Barack Obama in 2012.
Three years later, she became the recipient of the Sandrof Prize, a prestigious award, honoring lifetime achievement.
Toni Morrison’s work has shed light on racism, prejudices, and oppressions. She has been called a “pioneer for black female writers.” We recognize her for her bravery and boldness: writing by her own rules, unapologetically. May her work continue to inspire, open hearts and enlighten minds.