Jean Toomer (1894-1967) was born in Washington, D.C., the son of educated blacks of Creole stock. Literature was his first love and he regularly contributed avant garde poetry and short stories to such magazines as Dial, Broom, Secession, Double Dealer, and Little Review. After a literary apprenticeship in New York, Toomer taught school in rural Georgia. His experiences there led to the writing of Cane. Darwin T. Turner was professor of English at the University of Iowa and head of its Afro-American World Studies Program. He wrote extensively about Jean Toomer. He was the author of In a Minor Chord: Three Afro-American Writers and Their Search for Identity, Katharsis, and Nathaniel Hawthorne's "The Scarlet Letter." He edited, among other books, The Wayward and the Seeking: Selected Writings by Jean Toomer, Afro-American Writers, and Black American Literature: Essays, Poetry, Fiction, Drama. Professor Turner's poems were published in numerous journals, as were his many articles and reviews, most concerned with Afro-American writers.