Toni Morrison, the Nobel laureate and professor emerita at Princeton University, was selected to give the Charles Eliot Norton Lectures at Harvard University this spring. The lecture series was endowed in 1925 with the honoree designated as the Charles Eliot Norton Professor of Poetry for the duration of the six-lecture series. The series is hosted by the Mahindra Humanities Center at Harvard.
Homi K. Bhabha, director of the Mahindra Humanities Center, said that “there is no more compelling writer for our campus and our global times. Toni Morrison’s writings explore slavery, racism, the violence against women, the dehumanization of minorities — all the barbarisms that are too often endured and justified in the name of civility, progress, order, and modernity. Her imaginative reach is poignant and powerful, and though she speaks as an African-American, she embodies aesthetic and ethical values that extend way beyond the U.S.”
Professor Morrison gave the first of her six lectures on March 2 at Sanders Theatre on the Harvard campus. It was entitled “Romancing Slavery.” The six-lecture series is billed as “The Origins of Others: The Literature of Belonging.” The series will continue through mid-April.