Beloved: A Study of Toni Morrison

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Beloved: A Study of Toni Morrison


When literary giant Toni Morrison died on August 6, 2019, voices the world over mourned her loss and celebrated her genius. Former President Barack Obama tweeted that the Nobel Prize-winning author was "a national treasure. […] Her writing was a beautiful, meaningful challenge to our conscience and our moral imagination.” To honor her legacy, this class will take a deep dive into Morrison’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Beloved, a novel that begs to be mined. Its labyrinthine structure; its powerful, vivid language and indelible characterization; its defiance of rules and boundaries; and its profound thematic richness swirl together to create a sort of literary sorcery. It is book that lends itself to close reading and group discussion; it is also a one that, by its example, has much to teach writers at every level about the craft of fiction and the importance of stories.

In this four week class, hosted “fireside” in the home of Porch cofounder Katie McDougall, we will make our way through Beloved, examining it with the aim of better understanding not only what Morrison accomplishes but also how she does what she does with the goal of integrating that understanding into our own craft. In doing so, we hope, in our small way, to celebrate and one of the most revered and profound voices of the American literary canon.

Instructor: Katie McDougall
Length of workshop: 4 weeks
Date: Mondays, November 4 - November 25
Time: 7 - 9 pm
Location: home of Katie McDougall
Cost: $160/Non-Member; $144/Member **Don’t forget to use your membership code at check-out!

What Our Students Say:

“Katie provides the balance of knowledge and inspiration that gave me the legs to not only write but present in front of the others. I never saw that coming.”

“Katie McDougall is a fantastic teacher who is passionate about the subject herself. She gives you all the tools you need as a beginner in fiction writing, with the comfortability of allowing for flexibility and creativity in your own work.”

“Katie was an excellent instructor. She was encouraging, was able to meet each individual at their level, and supported us regardless of where we were in the process. She also made it feel safe to share our work with everyone which was initially daunting for me. I really learned a lot and am excited to take more classes.”


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About the Instructor: 

Katie McDougall is the cofounder/co-director of The Porch. For her full bio, please see our About Us page.