The Source of Self-Regard
A review of

The Source of Self-Regard

Selected Essays, Speeches, and Meditations

Toni MorrisonKnopf • 2019

Toni Morrison Speaks

by David Meyer

American icon, Nobelist Toni Morrison, offers her views on literature, race, politics and creative writing.

Toni Morrison, a towering figure in American letters and winner of the 1993 Nobel Prize for literature – wrote, among other novels, Beloved – which won the Pulitzer Prize – The Bluest Eye, Song of Solomon, Sula and Jazz. This anthology gathers remarks from her various speeches and public appearances that provide a cross section of her unfettered views about race, politics, literature, love, social responsibility and her own creative processes.

Morrison, who died in 2019, gave American literature a singular, penetrating, profoundly moving voice. If you are compelled by Morrison’s thoughts here, you will also enjoy her novels, particularly Beloved, Sula and Jazz. Her artistry enabled her to disappear into her work. Even diligent readers are more likely to lose themselves in her stories and characters than to look for the presence of the author in her tales. That makes this compilation of Morrison’s direct statements about her philosophy and insights all the more valuable.

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