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The Foreigner’s Home
Taking its name from an exhibited she curated at the Louvre, The Foreigner's Home looks at the life and work of Toni Morrison. A wealth of footage and exclusive interviews illuminate the themes of identity that unite the work of the celebrated writer.
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The Foreigner’s Home

Running Time
Feature Film
56 minutes

The Foreigner’s Home

Who IS the foreigner? Am I the foreigner in my own home? Who decides? Such were the questions posed by renowned author Toni Morrison at her 2006 guest-curated exhibit at the Louvre, “The Foreigner’s Home”. There she invited several renowned artists whose work also dealt with the experience of cultural and social displacement to join her in a public discussion that Morrison herself had been pursuing through her own research and writing.

This film expands that discussion by integrating exclusive footage of the Nobel Laureate in dialogue with artists in 2006 with a sit-down conversation in her own home with fellow writer Edwidge Danticat in 2015. The film also draws on extensive archival film footage, musical performances, and animation to frame a series of candid exchanges about race, identity, and art’s redemptive power. In this way, The Foreigner’s Home explores the idea of “foreignness” and highlights art’s crucial role in both understanding and addressing the increasingly urgent problems that surround it.

Filmmaker Notes:

“Despite Morrison’s incalculable cultural and social influence, no non-fiction motion pictures exist that seriously engage her work and ideas. Our film addresses this gap.

We saw Toni Morrison as something like a prophet, bravely confronting those in power and speaking the truth about the tragic plight of millions in the world today displaced by wars, hostile governments, natural disasters, and intolerance of ‘others’. We wanted to create a visual and aural world rich and bold enough to both support and engage this vision of art and its unique place in society.

Made with her blessing, The Foreigner’s Home grapples with the ongoing human struggle for liberation, identity, and community to which she speaks in her larger body of writing and reaffirms her conviction — expressed in “The Foreigner’s Home,” — that art, which ignites the kind of open exchange essential to the life of any genuine community, is ‘vital to what it means to be human’.

More than anything else, we hoped to convey the urgency and import of the incisive warning she issued ten years ago: ‘The destiny of the twenty-first century will be shaped by the possibility or the collapse of a shareable world.’”

Film details
Year(s) screened
  • 2018
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