The Sinclair Lewis Society; Roundtable Discussion;2012 American Literature Association, San Francisco; May 24-27; due 1/6/12

full name / name of organization: 
The Sinclair Lewis Society for the American Literature Association

The Sinclair Lewis Society will sponsor a roundtable discussion at the 2012 American Literature Association Conference in San Francisco (May 24-27) that focuses on the topic of women in the work of Sinclair Lewis. In Main Street, Lewis writes: "What Carol said that evening, what she was passionately thinking, was also emerging in the minds of women in ten thousand Gopher Prairies." This roundtable seeks participants who can add to the discussion prompted by Main Street—What are Lewis's women thinking? What do characters as diverse as Carol Kennicott, Una Golden, Ann Vickers, Leora Arrowsmith, Myra Babbitt, and others, have in common? How do Lewis's representations of these women engage with, and often critique, the expectations American society placed on women of the period? What do these literary figures, and Lewis's other non-fiction writing, teach us about Lewis's views on important early twentieth-century issues such as marriage, birth control, eugenics, and sexuality?

Proposals are requested for ten minute discussions. This will allow for five to six presenters with a moderated discussion to follow. Please submit 300 word abstracts for the ten minute discussions electronically to Corinne Martin ( by January 6, 2012. Proposals might include, but are not limited to:
--Main Street and/or other novels' representation of the New Woman
--Ann Vickers's engagement with issues pertaining to birth control and eugenics
--The working girl in The Job and other works
--Lewis's biography and his personal relationships with women
--Lewis's work for women's magazines, including Woman's Home Companion
--Lewis's newspaper work and views on women
--Women and consumer culture in Lewis's writing
--Women and sexuality and Lewis's work