By Aaris A. Schroeder
Tuesday, August 6, 2019
Literary pioneer, Toni Morrison who is known for her multicultural, time-set novels that showcased the different eras of African-American history passed on following a brief illness Monday morning at Montefiore Medical Center in The Bronx, NY at 88-years-old.
Let us not forget her big win with the ʻ88 Pulitzer Prize for fiction novel writing, her more recent ʻ10 Lifetime Achievement Award given at the Center For Fiction and in ʻ93 as the first Africa-American woman to win the Nobel Prize in Literature left behind one beautiful writing-legacy for the thousands upon thousands who looked up to her in more ways than one and were a strong part of her readership.
Morrison was looked to as one if the greats in modern authorship, writing such fantastic fiction novels that almost, seemingly came across as timely and purposeful. Some of her most popular, and one of my endearing favorites is the ʻ87 novel, “Beloved.” The story goes that during the near end of the Civil War, a former slave who escaped to head North becomes haunted by her daughterʻs ghost. The book was turned into a Film after Oprah Winfrey named “Beloved” one of her “Oprahʻs Book Club” top reads in ʻ00.
This story not only tested the emotional boundaries and each reader but also of the English Language. In reading “Beloved,” I notice an obvious pattern of rhythm when writing and seemingly poetic nature of each dialogue (and there are many in this particular book). She redefined how to write modern American literature and as a writer myself, it was extremely intriguing and I continued to read more books by Toni Morrison. She was no doubt my favorite writer in high school and was someone that I looked to for inspiration and creativity, passion and strength as a woman when it came to writing.
Recently in June ʻ19, a documentary was premiered entitled, “The Pieces I am” which showcases much of the author’s lesser-known struggles throughout her younger years following her life works and major accomplishments. Wonderfully produced by Timothy Greenfield-Sanders, he clearly understands Morrison as a person and as the author she is as he structured the entire documentary just like she stacked each chapter, building momentum so many times, bringing us back and forth with emotion, history until it crescendos at the end with Morrison and just her words, her truth and her peace.