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Analysis Of Jean Toomer Essay Research Paper

Analysis Of Jean Toomer Essay, Research Paper Carlo A. per. 4 Jean Toomer Jean Toomer was born into a upper-class African American family ( being that his

Analysis Of Jean Toomer Essay, Research Paper

Carlo A.

per. 4

Jean Toomer

Jean Toomer was born into a upper-class African American family ( being that his

grandfather, Pinckney Benton Stewart Pinchback was a Union officer in the Civil War

and became Acting Governor of Louisiana in the Days of Reconstruction) on 1896 in

Washington D.C. He showed strength in his early years as – when faced with adversity,

rather than wring his hands and retreat further into himself, Toomer searched for a plan

of action, an intellectual scheme and method to cope with a personal crisis. Later

Toomer attended college in several parts in the United States in which his interests

turned to religion and philosophy and wrote numerous essays about these subjects.

When he went to teach school in Georgia, where he absorbed the atmosphere of the

South and wrote his book Cane, a classic among black American literature which

combines sketches of black Southerners with poetry that expresses Toomer’s feelings

about identity and southern life. His writings were greatly praised during the Harlem

Renaisance during the 1920’s when black literature flourished. Most of Toomers

writings were written in conventional rhyme scheme and reflected weather in Georgia or

the feelings and customs of black Americans during the early twentieth century.

The Lost Dancer from The Collected Poems of Jean Toomer

Spatial depths of being survive

The birth to death recurrences

Of feet dancing on earth of sand;

Vibrations of the dance survive

The sand; the sand, elect, survives

The dancer. He can find no source

Of magic adequate to bind

The sand upon his feet, his feet

Upon his dance, his dance upon

The diamond body of his being.

This poem expresses Toomer’s struggle of maintaining his identity and culture

through his works. The image of the sand represents time in which the dancer

tries to leave his imprint of his soul, the diamond body of his being, through his

writings, the magic. This poem is characteristic of Modernism in Toomer’s ideas

convey abstract ideas about the soul.

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