For first time, universitywide ceremony will be held at new Rutgers Stadium.
NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. – Toni Morrison, recognized as one of the most influential writers in American literary history, will be the keynote speaker at Rutgers’ 245th anniversary Commencement Sunday, May 15, it was announced at today’s Board of Governors meeting.
Morrison, who in 1993 became the first African-American woman to win the Nobel Prize in literature, also will receive an honorary Doctor of Letters degree at the first universitywide graduation ceremony at the new Rutgers Stadium in Piscataway.
Morrison’s nine major novels – The Bluest Eye, Sula, Song of Solomon, Tar Baby, Beloved, Jazz, Paradise, Love and A Mercy – have earned extensive critical acclaim. She received the National Book Critics Award in 1978 for Song of Solomon and the 1988 Pulitzer Prize for Beloved. Both novels were chosen as main selections for the Book of Month Club in 1977 and 1987, respectively. Additionally, Beloved was chosen by the New York Times Book Review as the best work of American fiction published in the last quarter century.
Morrison is the Robert F. Goheen Professor in the Humanities, Emerita, at Princeton University. She was appointed to that position in 1989 and held the post until 2006. Prior to her appointment at Princeton, Morrison was the Schweitzer Professor of the Humanities, College of the Humanities and Fine Arts, State University of New York at Albany, and a senior editor at Random House for 20 years.
Morrison earned a Bachelor of Arts in English from Howard University and a Master of Arts in English from Cornell University.
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