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"My world did not shrink because I was a Black female writer. It just got bigger."
– Toni Morrison (1931-2019)

 

Toni Morrison, the first African-Amercian woman to win the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1933, died on 5 August 2019. Authored 11 novels as well as children’s books and essay collections, Morrison gained both critical and commercial successes. She won numerous awards, including National Book Critics Circle Award for Song of Solomon in 1977 and Pulitzer Prize for her masterwork Beloved in 1988, and the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2012.

Morrison dedicated her life to developing a canon of black work. In her works, she explored black identity in America, while white people were absent in her writings, which was rare to have in the mid-20th century. She finished her first novel The Bluest Eye in 1970, and at that time, she was working with Random House as an editor. One of nonfiction projects she had compiled was The Black Book (1974), illustrating three centuries of African-American history. Over the nearly two decades she held the post, she promoted the work of black authors, such as Angela Davis and Muhammad Ali.

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