Toni Morrison Quotes On Love and Dreams

Chloe Ardelia Wofford, popularly known as Toni Morrison was an American writer, born on February 18, 1931; she died on August 5, 2019. 1970 saw the publication of her first novel, The Bluest Eye. She became well-known across the country after publishing the highly regarded Song of Solomon (1977), which also won the National Book Critics Circle Award. Morrison won the Pulitzer Prize in 1988 for Beloved (1987), and in 1993, she was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature.

60 Toni Morrison Quotes

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  1. “Freeing yourself was one thing, claiming ownership of that freed self was another.”
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2. “You wanna fly, you got to give up the shit that weighs you down.”

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3. “If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.”

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4. “Correct what you can; learn from what you can’t.”

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5. “Like any artist without an art form, she became dangerous.”

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6. “Something that is loved is never lost.”

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7. “We mistook violence for passion, indolence for leisure, and thought recklessness was freedom.”

8. “Freeing yourself was one thing, claiming ownership of that freed self was another.”

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9. “I dream a dream that dreams back at me”

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10. “When fear rules, obedience is the only survival choice.” 

Toni Morrison Quotes About Life

11. “Not knowing it was hard; knowing it was harder”

12. “There in the center of that silence was not eternity but the death of time and a loneliness so profound the word itself had no meaning. ”

13. “The function of freedom is to free someone else.”

14. “Definitions belong to the definers, not the defined.”

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15. “Today is always here… Tomorrow, never.” 

16. “It was lovely. Not to be stared at, not seen, but being pulled into view by the interested, uncritical eyes of the other.” 

17. “Anything dead coming back to life hurts.”

18. “When fear rules, obedience is the only survival choice.”

19. “The presence of evil was something to be first recognized, then dealt with, survived, outwitted, triumphed over.”

20. “Love is or it ain’t. Thin love ain’t love at all.”

Famous Toni Morrison Quotes

21. “At some point in life the world’s beauty becomes enough. You don’t need to photograph, paint, or even remember it. It is enough.”

22. “It’s not about choosing somebody over her. It’s about making space for somebody along with her.”

23. “Lay my head on the railroad line. Train come along; pacify my mind. ”

24. “What’s the world for you if you can’t make it up the way you want it?”

25. “I don’t think a female running a house is a problem, a broken family. It’s perceived as one because of the notion that a head is a man. ”

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26. “He can’t value you more than you value yourself.”

27. “You couldn’t learn age, but adulthood was there for all.”

28. “We die. That may be the meaning of life. But we do language. That may be the measure of our lives.”

29. “All water has a perfect memory and is forever trying to get back to where it was.”

30. “If you surrendered to the air, you could ride it.”

Toni Morrison Quotes on Love

31. “Anger is better. There is a sense of being in anger. A reality and presence. An awareness of worth. It is a lovely surging.”

32. “You don’t have to love me but you damn well have to respect me.”

33. “When they fall in love with a city, it is for forever and it is like forever.”

34. “She learned the intricacy of loneliness: the horror of color, the roar of soundlessness and the menace of familiar objects lying still.”

35. “It never looked as terrible as it was and it made her wonder if hell was a pretty place too. Fire and brimstone all right, but hidden in lacy groves.”

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36. “Being good to somebody is just like being mean to somebody. Risky. You don’t get nothing for it.”

37. “You can’t own a human being. You can’t lose what you don’t own.”

38. “They encouraged you to put some of your weight in their hands and soon as you felt how light and lovely it was, they studied your scars and tribulations.”

39. “Love is never any better than the lover.”

40. “Death is a sure thing but life is just as certain. Problem is you can’t know in advance.”

Thought-Provoking Toni Morrison Quotes

41. “No matter what all your teeth and wet fingers anticipated, there was no accounting for the way that simple joy could shake you.”

42. “Everything depends on knowing how much… Good is knowing when to stop.” 

43. “What difference do it make if the thing you scared of is real or not?”

44. “I don’t think anybody cares about unwed mothers unless they’re black or poor. The question is not morality, the question is money. That’s what we’re upset about.”

45. “So when I think of autumn, I think of somebody with hands who does not want me to die.”

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46. “The human body is robust. It can gather strength when it’s in mortal danger.”

47. “As you enter positions of trust and power, dream a little before you think.”

48. “A dream is just a nightmare with lipstick.”

49. “No matter how hard we try to ignore it, the mind always knows truth and wants clarity.”

50. “How exquisitely human was the wish for permanent happiness, and how thin human imagination became trying to achieve it.”

Positive Toni Morrison Quotes on dreams, Reading and Love

51. “Every sentence, every word, was new to them and they listened to what he said like bright-eyed ravens, trembling in their eagerness to catch & interpret every sound in the universe.”

52. “But to find out the truth about how dreams die, one should never take the word of the dreamer.”

53. “I stood at the border, stood at the edge and claimed it as central. l claimed it as central, and let the rest of the world move over to where I was.”

54. “I’m not entangled in shaping my work according to other people’s views of how I should have done it.”

56. “Love is never any better than the lover. Wicked people love wickedly, violent people love violently, weak people love weakly, stupid people love stupidly, but the love a free man is never safe.”

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57. “Oppressive language does more than represent violence; it is violence; does more than represent the limits of knowledge; it limits knowledge.”

58. “You have to be clever to figure out how to be welcoming and defensive at the same time. When to love something and when to quit. If you don’t know how, you can end up out of control or controlled by some outside thing.”

59. “The sun and the moon shared the horizon in a distant friendship, each unfazed by the other.”

60. “Books are a form of political action. Books are knowledge. Books are reflection. Books change your mind.”

Additional Read: Toni Morrison, Towering Novelist of the Black Experience, Dies at 88

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