Earlier this month I came across a news story that actually … wait for it … brought a huge smile to my face! 😊 You all know who Toni Morrison is, right? She’s the acclaimed author who became the first African American woman to win the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1993, and she also won a Pulitzer Prize for perhaps her best known book, Beloved, in 1987. In 2012, President Barack Obama had the honour of presenting Ms. Morrison with the Presidential Medal of Freedom! Sadly, Ms. Morrison died in 2019, but in her 88 years on this earth, she left a legacy that will last for as long as humans live on the planet.
But wait, I’m not done! In fact, none of the above is what I set out to write about, for earlier this month it was announced that Toni Morrison will be featured on a U.S. Postal Service stamp!!!
The photo above is part of a 1997 photo shoot done for her cover on Time Magazine on January 19, 1998.
At the unveiling ceremony, held at Princeton University, where Ms. Morrison taught from 1989 to 2006, a letter from former President Barack Obama and former First Lady Michelle Obama was read …
“Toni told fundamental truths about our country and the human condition, but she didn’t just reflect what was true. She helped generations of Black Americans reimagine what was possible. That’s why we return to her stories again and again, finding new meaning each time.”
Sadly, many of Ms. Morrison’s books have been banned around the country in the attempt to whitewash history, to withhold from future generations an understanding of how we got where we are today, of the struggles for the very survival of an entire group of people based solely on the colour of their skin. I have to wonder, since at least two of Ms. Morrison’s books, Beloved and The Bluest Eye, are banned in Florida, if Governor DeSantis will try to stop the U.S. Postal Service from selling the Forever Stamp with Ms. Morrison’s image in the state?
I, for one, am pleased and proud to see Ms. Morrison on the Forever Stamp. It’s a move that should have happened long ago, but … better late than never.