2 Sessions: 6/11 & 6/25 Saturdays, 1:00 pm EST - 2:30 pm EST June 11 to June 25, 2022
Online via Zoom
This group has reached its capacity. To join the waitlist, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
A copy of Beloved will be shipped to the address provided at checkout and a Zoom link will be emailed to all registrants.
Toni Morrison’s Beloved reflects a wide range of concerns in the American imagination. Morrison asks us to reimagine the telling of history from the perspective of the subjects under study. Its adaptation from novel to film and opera encourage us to think about the complications of genre and medium in telling certain stories. Its place/role as a point of controversy for recent censorship arguments reminds us that the defense of an open canon is ever present. In this reading group, we will pay attention to the literary achievement of Beloved in the first workshop and then explore select commentary and articles around the novel in the second workshop.
Dana A. Williams
Dana A. Williams
Dana A. Williams is Professor of African American Literature and Dean of the Graduate School at Howard University. She is president of the Toni Morrison Society and 2nd Vice-President of the Modern Languages Association. She serves as a member of the advisory board for the Furious Flower Poetry Center, the Hurston/Wright Foundation, and the American Council of Learned Societies.
By Toni Morrison
Published by Knopf Doubleday
An unflinching look into the abyss of slavery from the acclaimed Nobel Prize winner. This spellbinding novel transforms history into a story as powerful as Exodus and as intimate as a lullaby.
Sethe, its protagonist, was born a slave and escaped to Ohio, but eighteen years later she is still not free. She has too many memories of Sweet Home, the beautiful farm where so many hideous things happened. And Sethe’s new home is haunted by the ghost of her baby, who died nameless and whose tombstone is engraved with a single word: Beloved. Filled with bitter poetry and suspense as taut as a rope, Beloved is a towering achievement.
About this series
NEA Big Read 2022
The Center for Fiction’s 2022 Big Read initiative focuses on Beloved, the landmark novel by the late, Nobel Prize-winning author Toni Morrison. Our free multidisciplinary public programming includes discussion groups, workshops for young writers, and public events with authors and scholars. The Center will also connect with students through our signature KidsRead / KidsWrite programming, bringing events to NYC public schools that adapt discussions of Beloved for a high school audience and feature books suitable for younger readers that engage with similar themes. Through this communal celebration of a novel that has been frequently banned and censored, we hope to help return a masterful novelist’s canonical work to its rightful place of prominence. This initiative was made possible through a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.
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