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Jean ToomerRace, Repression, and Revolution$
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Barbara Foley

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780252038440

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252038440.001.0001

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Georgia on His Mind

Georgia on His Mind

Part 1 of Cane

(p.188) Chapter 6 Georgia on His Mind
Jean Toomer

Barbara Foley

University of Illinois Press

This chapter analyzes how many of the texts in part 1 of Cane display Toomer's continuing attempt to incorporate Sempter/Sparta into the program for sectional art that had failed to achieve effective expression in “Kabnis.” While things are so immediate in the Georgia that traumatizes Toomer's artist-hero, in part 1 the word “Georgia” figures prominently among the symbolic acts that link the soil and the folk through the ideologeme of metonymic nationalism. Such references to Georgia propose that the folk culture located on the Dixie Pike is a vital spiritual link in the chain connecting region with nation, and affirming the belonging of African Americans in an expanded version of “our” America.

Keywords:   Jean Toomer, Cane, sectional art, Kabnis, artist-hero, metonymic nationalism, African Americans

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