Toni Morrisons fourth novel

Tar Baby

was published by Alfred A. Knopf in 1981. When it was released her picture appeared on the cover of


, which also featured an article describing her as “an editor at Random House, a teacher (formerly at Yale, currently at Bard College), a member of the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters, an active member of the National Council on the Arts and a prize-winning novelist” (Strouse, “Tony Morrison’s Black Magic”,


, March 30th, 1981).

Tar Baby

was preceded by the successful

Song of Solomon

(1977), which had earned Morrison the National Book Critics Circle Award and the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters Award; however, no such awards followed the publication of

Tar Baby

. It was to be succeeded by the…

2885 words

Citation: Treby, Marion. "Tar Baby". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 14 September 2006 [, accessed 14 July 2024.]

1703 Tar Baby 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

Save this article

If you need to create a new bookshelf to save this article in, please make sure that you are logged in, then go to your 'Account' here

Leave Feedback

The Literary Encyclopedia is a living community of scholars. We welcome comments which will help us improve.