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Jean Toomer

Toomer circa 1920-1930 Jean Toomer (December 26, 1894 – March 30, 1967) was an American poet and novelist and an important figure of the Harlem Renaissance and modernism. His first book ''Cane'', published in 1923, is considered by many to be his most significant. Of mixed race and majority European ancestry, Toomer struggled to identify as "an American" and resisted efforts to classify him as a black writer.

He continued to write poetry, short stories and essays. After his second marriage in 1934, he moved from New York to Doylestown, Pennsylvania, where he became a member of the Religious Society of Friends (also known as Quakers) and retired from public life. His papers are held by the Beinecke Rare Book Library at Yale University.
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