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Toni Morrison sees her real education in the unlearning of those white standards of duty and value she had internalized. The author believes that the truth of stories lies not only in facts but also in the telling.
From her parents, Toni Morrison came to appreciate narrative structure, unity, and cohesiveness. They provided her with a powerful, image-provoking language. African language is alive and vivid in American English.
Toni Morrison's work is a continuing challenge to the television culture of mass distraction. Morrison takes readers deep inside her characters' pain. Morrison discusses the language and style of "Jazz."
White America must accept the truth of the past about slavery and violence perpetrated against black people torn from their homes in Africa. America cannot afford to keep lying about the importance of the truth.
The theme of Toni Morrison's "Place and Displacement" is central to the writer's work. As immigrants came to America, the concept of blackness became the "other." White races united on the basis of what they were not.
Toni Morrison's vision is an America where a difference is not feared but celebrated. Humans rank differences, create hierarchies of differences. Blacks have almost always been ranked near the bottom, as "less than."
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This program introduces one of the greatest contemporary American authors: winner of the 1993 Nobel Prize in Literature, "a literary Moses stripping away the idols of whiteness and blackness that have prevented blacks from knowing themselves." Readings from Beloved and Jazz show how she returns to the pain of slavery and segregation to restore wholeness to the black psyche. "The past," Morrison says, "is more infinite than the future... Its avoiding it, deceiving ourselves about it, that paralyzes growth." (25 minutes)
Length: 26 minutes
Copyright date: ©1992
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