Toni Morrosion – The Vitalist: Bio Versus Necro Centricities


  • Kennedy J.



Toni Morrison, Vitalist, Attitude, Affirming, Denying, Affording, Dealing, Positive, Negative


Toni Morrison, as many think, is a feminist writer or an African-American writer and so on. When we read her novels, she does not confine herself with feminism, or Africanism, or Americanism, or a writer for pleasure reading.  Morrison is a serious writer and deals with matters that are universal and each character that she develops speaks about the nature of love, passion, and they all are life-giving.

Morrison gives many oppositional structures in her novels – characters, plots, incidents, and ideologies – to show the readers that the world (and each one of us) is surrounded with so many “opposites” which are inevitable and it is the duty of the human beings to cull the best out of them.

Her characters and themes are life-affirming / life-denying or life-affording / death-dealing or having positive / negative attitudes.  However, they all describe that love for oneself and others are the only measure that would make the world move.


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Author Biography

Kennedy J.

Senior Lecturer in English

Department of Language

Eastern University

Sri Lanka


Primary Sources

Morrison, Toni. Song of Solomon. London: Vintage, 1977.

---. Tar Baby. London: Vintage, 1981.

---. Sula. New York: Penguin, 1982.

---. Beloved. London: Vintage, 1987.

---. Jazz. London: Vintage, 1992.

---. Paradise. London: Vintage, 1997.

---. The Bluest Eye. London: Vintage, 1999

Secondary Sources

Ackward, Michael. “Roadblocks and Relatives: Critical Revision in Toni Morrison’s The Bluest Eye.” Mckay, Nellie. Y ed. Critical Essays on Toni Morrison. Boston: Hall, 1998.

Adams, Anne. “Straining to Make Out the Words to the ‘Lied’: The German Reception of Toni Morrison” Mckay, Nellie. Y ed. Critical Essays on Toni Morrison. Boston: Hall, 1998.

Barry, Peter. Beginning Theory: An Introduction to Literary and Cultural Theory. New York: Manchester university Press, 2004.

Denard, Carolyn. “The Convergence of Feminism and Ethnicity in the Fictions of Toni Morrison.” Mckay, Nellie. Y ed. Critical Essays on Toni Morrison. Boston: Hall, 1998.

Edward, Thomas R. The New York Review of Books. 5 Number, 1987

Fabre, Genevieve. “Genealogical Archeology or the Quest for Legacy in Toni Morrison’s Song of Solomon.” Mckay, Nellie. Y ed. Critical Essays on Toni Morrison. Boston: Hall, 1998.

Horvitz, Deborah. “Nameless Ghosts: Possession and Dispossion in Beloved.” Studies in American Fiction, Vol.17, No.2, Autumn 1989.

Loomba, Ania. Colonialism/ Pastcolonialism. London: Routledge, 2003.

Morrison, Toni, Playing in the Dark. NY: Random House, 1988.

Schapiro, Barbara. “The Bounds of Love and the Boundaries of Self in Toni Morrison’s Beloved.” Contemporary Literary Criticism, vol. 87.

Thurman, Judith. The New Yorker, 2 November, 1987.

Wessling, Joseph K. “Narcissim in Toni Morrison’s Sula.” CLA Journal, vol-31, no-05, 1988.

"vitalism." Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica 2006 Ultimate Reference Suite DVD.

“Vitality”. Merriam-Webster Dictionary, ver. 2.1, 2001.

Works Consulted

Booth, Wayne C. The Rhetoric of Fiction. Chicago: The University of Chicago, 1961.

Buber, Martin. I and Thou. Translated by Ronald Gregor Smith. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1958.

Butler, Elliott and Evans. Race, Gender, and Desire: Narrative Strategies in the Fictions of Toni Cade Bambara, Toni Morrison, and Alice Walker. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1989.

Eagelton, Terry. Ideology: An Introduction. New York: Verso, 1996.

Evans, Mari, ed. Black American Writers (1950 – 1980): A Critical Evaluation. New York: Anchor-Doubleday, 1984.

Hawkes, David. Ideology. London: Routledge, 2003. 165.

Joyner, Louisa. Toni Morrison – The Essential Guide. London: Vintage, 2003.

Nevins, Allan, Henry Steele Commager and Jeffrey Morris. A Pocket History of the United States. New York: Pocket Books, 1986.

Petrson, Nancy J. ed. Modern Fiction Studies. Vol.-39, Issue – 3 & 4, Fall/Winter – 1993.

Smith, Valerie. Self-Discovery and Authority in Afro-American Narrative. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1987.




How to Cite

J. , K. . (2021). Toni Morrosion – The Vitalist: Bio Versus Necro Centricities. SMART MOVES JOURNAL IJELLH, 9(5), 325–384.