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16 Toni Morrison Quotes About Every Facet Of Life

Toni Morrison’s literary empire has been a hot topic for years now. She depicted Black life in a society where there was little representation of African American people. Her books cover every aspect of human life, leaving behind a cocktail of haunting sadness and overwhelming optimism. Now that her birthday is around the corner, here is a list of her most beloved quotes to take inspiration from on rainy days. Happy Birthday, Toni Morrison. Our hearts will always carry your legacy with a lot of love.

toni morrison beloved book cover“Freeing yourself was one thing, claiming ownership of that freed self was another.”
Beloved

“Make up a story. For our sake and yours forget your name in the street; tell us what the world has been to you in the dark places and in the light. Don’t tell us what to believe, what to fear. Show us belief’s wide skirt and the stitch that unravels fear’s caul.”
The Nobel Lecture In Literature, 1993

“And I am all the things I have ever loved: scuppernong wine, cool baptisms in silent water, dream books and number playing.”

Category ID: 476

“In a way, her strangeness, her naiveté, her craving for the other half of her equation was the consequence of an idle imagination. Had she paints, or clay, or knew the discipline of the dance, or strings, had she anything to engage her tremendous curiosity and her gift for metaphor, she might have exchanged the restlessness and preoccupation with whim for an activity that provided her with all she yearned for. And like an artist with no art form, she became dangerous.”
Sula

“You are your best thing.”
Beloved

“You can’t own a human being. You can’t lose what you don’t own. Suppose you did own him. Could you really love somebody who was absolutely nobody without you? You really want somebody like that? Somebody who falls apart when you walk out the door? You don’t, do you? And neither does he. You’re turning over your whole life to him. Your whole life, girl. And if it means so little to you that you can just give it away, hand it to him, then why should it mean any more to him? He can’t value you more than you value yourself.”
Song of Solomon

Sula Toni Morrison cover“Lonely, ain’t it?
Yes, but my lonely is mine. Now your lonely is somebody else’s. Made by somebody else and handed to you. Ain’t that something? A secondhand lonely.”
Sula

“Me and you, we got more yesterday than anybody. We need some kind of tomorrow.”
Beloved

“We die. That may be the meaning of life. But we do language. That may be the measure of our lives.”

“Today is always here,’ said Sethe. ‘Tomorrow, never.”
Beloved

“The presence of evil was something to be first recognized, then dealt with, survived, outwitted, triumphed over.”
Sula

“If you surrender to the wind you can ride it.”

“How exquisitely human was the wish for permanent happiness, and how thin human imagination became trying to achieve it.”
Paradise

Song of Solomon Cover“Listen, baby, people do funny things. Specially us. The cards are stacked against us and just trying to stay in the game, stay alive and in the game, makes us do funny things. Things we can’t help. Things that make us hurt one another. We don’t even know why.”
Song of Solomon

“You think because he doesn’t love you that you are worthless. You think because he doesn’t want you anymore that he is right—that his judgment and opinion of you are correct. If he throws you out, then you are garbage. You think he belongs to you because you want to belong to him. Hagar, don’t. It’s a bad word, ‘belong.’ Especially when you put it with somebody you love. Love shouldn’t be like that.”
Song of Solomon

“I can be miserable if I want to. You don’t need to try and make it go away. It shouldn’t go away. It’s just as sad as it ought to be and I’m not going to hide from what’s true just because it hurts.”
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