The Friday 56 – Banned Books: Beloved by Toni Morrison

The Friday 56 is a weekly meme hosted over at Freda’s Voice. The rules are simple and go something like this.

Friday 561.  Grab a book, any book.
2.  Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader (If you have to improvise, that’s ok.)
3.  Find any sentence, (or a few, just don’t spoil it)
4.  Post it.
5.  Add the post url, not your blog url to the Linky.
6. Tweet it #Friday56 (not an official Freda’s Voice rule)

Today is the last official day for Banned Books Week, but the fight against banning books doesn’t stop with this last week in September. It is an ongoing struggle to fight for your right to read.

Before I get into this week’s Friday 56 let me tell you something I have planned. It’s something I’ve been thinking about for a while and think it’s time I got off the pot and did it. So, here’s the plan:

Every month I will read at least one (1) challenged/banned book starting with the America Library Association’s Frequently Challenged List by Decade (2000-2009). The next decade list, if my math is correct, will be out in 2020.

If you’d like to join me I’ve created a Challenged/Banned Page with a link up.

And, now on this week’s Friday 56. Enjoy!

Toni Morrison is one of the most challenged and banned authors according the the ALA. Not one, but three of her books landed on the 100 Most Frequently Challenged List of 1990-1999:

  • The Bluest Eye #32
  • Beloved #45
  • Song of Solomon #84

And because I’m a slight over achiever, I thought I’d include all three of these highly challenged books in my Friday 56. Enjoy and don’t forget visit your local library and check them out.

From the Bluest Eye, 56%

Along with the idea of romantic love, she was introduced to another — physical beauty. Probably the most destructive ideas in the history of human thought. Both originated in envy, thrived in insecurity, and ended in disillusion. . .  She regarded love as possessive mating, and romance as the goal of the spirit. It would be for her a well-spring from which she would draw the most destructive emotions, deceiving the lover and seeing to imprison the beloved, curtailng freedom in every way.

add to goodreads[5]From Beloved, pg. 56

Rainwater held on to pine needles for dear life and Beloved could not take her eyes off Sethe. Stooping to shake the damper, or snapping sticks or kindlin, Sethe was licked, tasted, eaten by Beloved’s eyes. Like a familiar, she hovered, never leaving the room Sethe was in unless required and told to. She rose early in the dark to be there, waiting, in the kitchen when Sethe came down to make fast bread before she left for work. In lamplight, and over the flames of the cooking stove, their two shadows clashed and crossed on the ceiling like black swords.

add to goodreads[5]From Song of Solomon, 56%

Corinthians was naive, but she was not a complete fool. She never let her mistress know she had ever been to college or Europe or could recognize one word of French that Miss Graham had not taught her.

. . .When Miss Graham first saw Corinthians, she was not at all impressed with her. First, because the prospective employee came ten minutes early for the interview.  . . .Already irritated by the lapse, she was further disenchanted by the woman’s delicate frame. Obviously she could not put up the screens, take down the storm windows, or endure any sustained heaving cleaning. But when she learned woman’s name, Michael-Mary was so charmed by the sound of “Corinthians Dead,” she hired her on the spot. As she told friends later, her poetic sensibility over-whelmed her good judgment.

add to goodreads[5]

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