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Believe it or not, there IS culture that comes from New Jersey! And I don't mean the latest diner being built! In this category, I am including writers, artists and other "cultural" individuals who may not fit in the other categories.

Peter Balakian
Peter Balakian - b. 1951
Teaneck, NJ

Poet, writer and Professor of Humanities at Colgate University.
Thanks to Bruce Smith for this suggetion.

Peter Benchley
Peter Benchley - b. 1940 d. 2006
Princeton, NJ

Born in New York City, Benchley is best known as the author of the novel "Jaws", which was turned into the blockbuster movie of the same name, starring New Jerseyan Roy Scheider and directed by Steven Spielberg. However, Benchley was so much more than just the maker of ocean nightmares.

Judy Blume
Judy Blume - b. 1938
Elizabeth, NJ
Children's book author, winner of numerous literary awards. Just ask your child!

Iris Chang
Iris Chang - b. 1968 - d. 2004
Princeton, NJ

Born in Princeton, and raised in Illinois, this Chinese-American freelance journalist and historian is best known for her book detailing the Rape of Nanking. She commited suicide as a result of a depressive episode from a nervous breakdown.

Mary Higgins Clark
Mary Higgins Clark - b. 1929
Saddle River, NJ

Born and raised in New York, Mary Higgins Clark, the "Queen of Suspense", is a best-selling and award-winning mystery author.
Thanks for this suggestion goes to Jackie.

Harlan Coben
Harlan Coben - b. 1962
Newark, NJ

Born in Newark and raised in Livingston, Coben is a famous mystery/thriller author.
Thanks to Rob C. for this suggestion.

James Fenimore Cooper
James Fenimore Cooper - b. 1789 d. 1851
Burlington, NJ
Early American writer, generally considered to be the first major American novelist. Perhaps most famous for "Last of the Mohicans".
James Fenimore Cooper Society

Stephen Crane
Stephen Crane - b. 1871 d. 1900
Newark, NJ
Writer, best known for "The Red Badge of Courage" and "The Open Boat".
Stephen Crane Society

Ed Cubberly
Ed Cubberly - b. 1957
Bayonne, NJ

Born in Bayonne, but now residing in Frenchtown, Ed Cubberly produces custom hockey goalie masks but might be best known for creating the "Hannibal Lechter" mask. He is also a part-time artist who makes sculptures from body molds.

Junot Diaz
Junot Diaz - b. 1968
Parlin, NJ

Born in the Dominican Republic, 2008 Pulitzer award winning novelist Diaz immigrated to Parlin, NJ as a boy, and attended Kean College and Rutgers.

Allen Ginsberg
Allen Ginsberg - b. 1926 d. 1997
Newark, NJ
Born in Newark, NJ and raised in Paterson, NJ, Ginsberg was a well-known and respected poet. He also recorded several selections of music, with him reading his poetry over the music.

Joyce Kilmer
Alfred Joyce Kilmer - b. 1886 d. 1918
New Brunswick, NJ
Poet, killed on the Western Front in World War 1.

Dorothea Lange
Dorothea Lange - b. 1895 d. 1965
Hoboken, NJ

Lange was an influential American documentary photographer and photojournalist, best known for her Depression-era work.

Fran Lebowitz
Fran Lebowitz - b. 1950
Morristown, NJ

Author, and sometimes actress.

Anne Morrow Lindbergh
Anne Morrow Lindbergh - b. 1906 d. 2001
Englewood, NJ

Obviously best known as the wife of famous aviator Charles Lindbergh, Anne Morrow Lindbergh was an accomplished aviator and author.
Lindbergh Foundation

Norman Mailer
Norman Mailer - b. 1923 d. 2007
Long Branch, NJ
Born in New Jersey, famed novelist Mailer's family moved to Brooklyn when he was 4.

Wil Mara
Wil Mara - b. 1966
Manasquan, NJ

Author of more than 80 books, including specialty books such as biographies for young readers.

John McPhee
John McPhee - b. 1931
Princeton, NJ
Pulitzer prize winning author, McPhee went to school at Princeton and has written for numerous publications. He also penned an authoritave book on the Pine Barrens in New Jersey.

Dorothy Parker
Dorothy (Rothschild) Parker - b. 1893 d. 1967
West End, NJ
Short story writer, poet and critic, perhaps best known for her Algonquin Round Table in New York City.

Paul Robeson
Paul Robeson - b. 1898 d. 1976
Princeton, NJ
Paul Robeson would fit in any category, so I just picked this one. All-American football player, singer, actor, activist, you name it, he did it.

Philip Roth
Philip Roth - b. 1933
Newark, NJ
Fiction author, recipient of numerous Writing Awards and critical acclaim.
Philip Roth Society

Gerard Schwarz
Gerard Schwarz - b. 1947
Weehawken, NJ

Born in Weehawken but grew up in Hoboken, Schwarz has been the Music Director at the Seattle Symphony for 21 years. He could have been put in the Music category as well.

George Segal
George Segal - b. 1924 d. 2000
South Brunswick, NJ

Born in New York City, Segal was a Rutgers graduate and did most of his work while living in central New Jersey. Segal was a painter and sculptor, perhaps best known for his tableaux of life-sized cast figures, usually in stark white plaster, of ordinary people placed in everyday situations and environments.

Edward Stratemeyer
Edward Stratemeyer - b. 1862 d. 1930
Elizabeth, NJ

You probably don't know Stratemeyer's name, but you probably heard of some of the numerous children's books he 'wrote' under various pseudonyms: Nancy Drew, The Hardy Boys, The Bobbsey Twins and Tom Swift, among many other lesser known series.

Stratemeyer Syndicate

Gay Talese
Gay Talese - b. 1932
Ocean City, NJ

Best-selling author, also wrote for the New York Times.

Albert Payson Terhune
Albert Payson Terhune - b. 1872 d. 1942
Wayne, NJ

Dog lover and writer. If you are a doggy person, you may have heard of Terhune and the Sunnybank collies.
Thanks for this suggestion goes to George Latimore of Indonesia.

George Tice
George Tice - b. 1938
Newark, NJ
One of the best-known fine-art photographers in the nation, Tice is a 10th generation New Jerseyan. Particularly fascinated with urban landscapes, his series on Paterson is well-respected.

Walt Whitman.
Walt Whitman - b. 1819 d. 1892
Camden, NJ
Poet. Moved to Camden in 1873 after suffering a stroke, living there until he died in 1892.

C K Williams
C. K. Williams - b. 1936
Newark, NJ

Born in Newark, and attended school in Maplewood, Charles Kenneth Williams is a Pulitzer Prize-winning poet. He is also the recipient of numerous other awards, and teaches at Princeton.

illiam Carlos Williams
William Carlos Williams - b. 1883 d. 1963
Rutherford, NJ
Doctor and poet, awarded Pulitzer Prize for Poetry posthumously in 1963.

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