Morrison, winner of such prestigious awards as the Pulitzer Prize and Nobel Prize in Literature, was best known for her bestselling 1987 novel Beloved, which was adapted into a film starring Oprah Winfrey in 1998. Publisher Alfred A. Knopf announced on Tuesday that Morrison had died on Monday, Aug. 5., in New York City after a brief illness. She was 88 years old.
A number of celebs have taken to social media to talk about the impact Morrison had, including former President of the United States Barack Obama, who shared a picture with her from when he presented her with the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2012.
"Toni Morrison was a national treasure, as good a storyteller, as captivating, in person as she was on the page," Obama tweeted. "Her writing was a beautiful, meaningful challenge to our conscience and our moral imagination. What a gift to breathe the same air as her, if only for a while."
Toni Morrison was a national treasure, as good a storyteller, as captivating, in person as she was on the page. Her writing was a beautiful, meaningful challenge to our conscience and our moral imagination. What a gift to breathe the same air as her, if only for a while. pic.twitter.com/JG7Jgu4p9t
Morrison was celebrated for chronically the Black American experience with her extraordinary novels. In an August 2017 article for Glamour, Meghan Markle listed the author as one of the 10 women who changed her life.
"In college, I took a class on the works of Toni Morrison," Markle shared at the time. "The first time I read The Bluest Eye, I thought, 'Wow! She creates this world for you that you get to feel a part of.'"
On Tuesday, Gabrielle Union tweeted, "Her words were like mirrors to our collective souls. Like pillows to cushion the blows. Like mothers to wrap us in love. Like friends to hold our hands and see us through the darkness. #RipToniMorrison ❤ you. May we lift her up in the light of goodness and hold her there."
Her words were like mirrors to our collective souls. Like pillows to cushion the blows. Like mothers to wrap us in love. Like friends to hold our hands and see us through the darkness. #RipToniMorrison ❤ you. May we lift her up in the light of goodness and hold her there.
Beyonce later posted a tribute to the renowned author on her website, writing: "Rest in Paradise."
Read on for more celeb reactions:
Toni Morrison was a world-class human being. Her words stirred our souls & challenged our consciences to confront injustice, large or small, wherever it exists. How blessed we are that she gave us her gifts. Hillary and I are grateful for her life and the kindness she showed us. pic.twitter.com/ZCSPFCma1F
“Something that is loved is never lost"...encouraging words from the beloved author #ToniMorrison that we can surely use today. So sad to hear of the passing of the first African-American woman to win the Nobel Prize… https://t.co/7FkcdVOyMW
“If you look at the world as a brutal game, then you bump into the mystery of the tree-shaped scar. There seems to be such a thing as grace, such a thing as beauty, such a thing as harmony. All of which are wholly free and available to us.” Your life was our gift, #ToniMorrisonpic.twitter.com/wcD7w9zKYp
“We die. That may be the meaning of life. But we do language. That may be the measure of our lives.” Toni Morrison. I’m deeply sadden to share that one of our greatest writers and minds in American History, Toni Morrison, passed away at the age of 88. May God Bless Her Soul. pic.twitter.com/Dq1UL4ENIY
#ToniMorrison has died. Just when we most need to hear her voice, she is gone. Thank you for the insights, the stories, and the poetry of your thought that have enriched us all these many years. Lay your burden down.
Today, the world lost a storyteller of unmatched empathy, elegance and power. Toni Morrison’s belief that language is the “measure of our lives” leaves an extraordinary, inspiring inheritance, and her beautiful writing will continue to be a blessing for generations to come. pic.twitter.com/cc3st7x2lM
“One wonders why the label “weak” has become the ultimate and unforgivable sin. Is it because we have become a nation so frightened of others, itself and its citizens that it does not recognize true weakness: the cowardice in the insistence on guns everywhere, war anywhere?” pic.twitter.com/oF5DDkAsSI