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Charles W. Chesnutt (Charles Waddell Chesnutt) Biography

(1858–1932), (Charles Waddell Chesnutt), Atlantic Monthly, The Conjure Woman

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African-American short-story writer and novelist, born in Cleveland, Ohio. He passed the Ohio Bar examination in 1887, but subsequently worked mainly as a legal stenographer. Highly praised by William Dean Howells, Chesnutt's stories combine literary sophistication with a deep immersion in the culture and folklore of blacks in the American South. They appeared in the Atlantic Monthly, and were collected in The Conjure Woman (1899) and The Wife of His Youth and Other Stories of the Color Line (1899). His novels, though less widely read now, but equally successful as the stories in his own day, include The House Behind the Cedars (1900), The Marrow of Tradition (1901), and The Colonel's Dream (1905).

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