Toni Morrison: The legacy of a literary legend
The American writer Toni Morrison once said, “If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” It was an urge which in her case yielded a rich array of novels, children’s books, plays and essays. Toni Morrison stands tall, as the first black woman of any nationality to be awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. Celebrated for her masterpiece Beloved, she remains a towering figure, one of the most well-known and oft-taught authors of our age. Since her death in August 2019, many have been reassessing her multiple legacies: as a novelist, cultural critic, and editor.
Joining Bridget Kendall to explore the life, work and impact of Toni Morrison are Dana Williams, Professor of African American Literature at Howard University in Washington DC and current President of the Toni Morrison Society; Janis A. Mayes, Emerita professor of African American Studies at Syracuse University, US; and Aretha Phiri, Associate Professor at Rhodes University in Grahamstown / Makhanda, South Africa.
Produced by Jo Impey for BBC World Service
Additional research by Tessa Roynon
[Photo: Toni Morrison in Chicago, Illinois in 2010. Credit: Getty Images / Daniel Boczarski / FilmMagic]