Rare Toni Morrison Short Story to be Published as a Book – Los Angeles Sentinel | Los Angeles Sentinel

For many in the world, the late Toni Morrison was a novelist and famous for classics such as “The Loved one,” “Song of Solomon,” and “The Bluest Eye.”

But the Nobel laureates weren’t limited to writing in some sort.

Morrison also completed plays, poetry, essays, and short stories. One of them will be published as a book on February 1st. Two women from childhood to their contrasting fate as adults. Zadie Smith contributed the introduction, and the audio version of the story is read by actor Bahni Turpin.

According to Autumn M. Womack, a professor of English and African-American studies at Princeton University (which Morrison has taught for years), the author has written short fiction at least since college at Howard and Cornell. However, the story collection. “Recitative” was included in the 1983 release “Confirmation: Anthology of African-American Women” co-edited by poet playwright Amiri Baraka and is no longer printed.

“One of the main points from then on (” recitative “) is to start thinking of her as the person who tried the shape. Apart from the idea that she is just a novelist, she would think of her as someone who was trying to write all sorts of things, “Womak said.

“Recitative” refers to the musical expression that Merriam-Webster defines as “a rhythmically free vocal style that mimics the natural changes in speech.” This is Morrison’s favorite style. The story tells a series of encounters between Roberta and Tuira. One of them is black and the other is white, but I can’t guess which one.

They meet as girls in the shelter of the children of St. Bonaventure (“It was different to get stuck in a strange place with girls of other races,” remembers story narrator Twyla). .. And a few years later, in Howard Johnson, northern New York, Twyla is working and Roberta may come with a man who will meet Jimi Hendrix, or later at the nearby Food Emporium.

“Once 12 years ago, we passed by like strangers,” says Twyla. “A black girl and a white girl meet at Howard Johnson on the road and have nothing to say. One is wearing a blue and white triangular waitress hat and the other is going to see Hendrix. With a male companion on the way. Now we behaved as if the sisters were too long apart. “

As Womak points out, “Recitative” includes the complex relationship between the two women who were also the center of Morrison’s novel “Sula” and the racial blur used in the 1998 novel “Paradise”. Contains themes found elsewhere in Morrison’s work, such as Morrison. Morrison refers to a white character within the black community without clarifying who it is. Morrison often described race as an invention of society, once writing that “the realm of racial differences was allowed the intellectual weight it does not claim.”

In his introduction, Smith likens “Recitatif” to puzzles and games and warns that “Toni Morrison will not play.” The mystery begins at the opening line. “My mother danced all night and Roberta was ill.” Now, what kind of mothers tend to dance all night now? “Smith asks,” Black or white? ” Throughout the story, Morrison refers to everything from hair length to social status, as if to challenge the reader’s own racial assumptions.

“Like most readers of’Recitatif’, I’ve found it impossible to be dying to know who others are, Twyla or Roberta,” Smith admits. “Oh, I urgently wanted to straighten it. I wanted to be warm and sympathetic in one place, but it became cold in another. Feel someone and fire everyone.

“But this is exactly what Morrison intentionally and systematically does not allow me. It is worth asking myself why.”

Rare Toni Morrison Short Story to be Published as a Book – Los Angeles Sentinel | Los Angeles Sentinel Source link Rare Toni Morrison Short Story to be Published as a Book – Los Angeles Sentinel | Los Angeles Sentinel

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