Toni Morrison Race Theory Essay

595 Words3 Pages

One of the most powerful and eye opening interviews I recently viewed was with Toni Morrison and Charlie Rose, “Toni Morrison Refuses To Privilege White People In Her Novels!” Although the title a little deceiving, her discourse explained why she wrote from a black lens as opposed to a white one. In the not so distant past most of the literature in the American canon was mainly made up of white male writers. Only until recently has writers, such as David Cusick, author of The Iroquois Creation Story, Samson Occom, belonging to the Pequot tribe, Olaudah Equiano, the African entered into popular anthology’s of early American Literature the first step in canonization. The race riots and civil rights movements that grew from 1950’s continuing …show more content…

Race theory analyzes literature from a racial perspective. Langston Hughes’ The Weary Blues, is one such great piece of literature that can be better dissected from the racial lens. Toni Morrison’s view, from “Falling into Theory,” says it best, “I realized the obvious; that the subject of the dream is the dreamer. The fabrication of an Africanistic persona was reflective; it was and extraordinary meditation on the self, a powerful exploration of the fears and desires that reside in the writerly consciousness, and astonishing revelation of longing, of terror, of perplexity, of shame, of magnanimity” (258). The poor piano man plays a drowsy tune, the dullness of the pallor, his lazy sway, rickety stool, sad raggy tune, piano moan are synonymous with the Black man’s plight after slavery, after the reconstruction, after WWII. Down and out, can’t find work he is doomed to this lowly positon in the social hierarchy. “With his ebony hands on each ivory key He made that poor piano moan with melody” (9-10). This touch of black to white is as agonizing as the world can be for a black man living on the edge of white society, never really being accepted. Black laborers work in the fields, shops and other jobs owned by white people

Open Document