Born Chloe Anthony Wofford, in 1931 in Lorain (Ohio), the second of four children in a black working-class family, Toni displayed an early interest in literature. She studied humanities at Howard and Cornell Universities, followed by an academic career at Texas Southern University, Howard University, Yale, and since 1989, a chair at Princeton University. She has also worked as an editor for Random House, a critic, and given numerous public lectures, specializing in African-American literature. She made her debut as a novelist in 1970, soon gaining the attention of both critics and a wider audience for her epic power, unerring ear for dialogue, and her poetically charged and richly expressive depictions of Black America. A member since 1981 of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, she has been awarded a number of literary distinctions, among them the Pulitzer Prize in 1988.
All water has a perfect memory and is forever trying to get back to where it was.
As you enter positions of trust and power, dream a little before you think.
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.