Mary E. Wilkins Freeman Society Panel American Literature Association 2022

deadline for submissions: 
January 20, 2022
full name / name of organization: 
Mary E. Wilkins Freeman Society

ALA 2022 author’s society panel call for papers

Mary E. Wilkins Freeman: Open Topic

Since the heyday of Freeman studies in the 1990s, many new approaches to Freeman have been developed, including the Gothic, the ecocritical, and the dark side of female bonding. All these approaches continue to be fruitful. In the past, ALA panels on Freeman have considered Freeman and the First World War, disability, Irish American literary tropes, and relentless suitors. This year the Freeman Society welcomes studies from any angle of Freeman’s short stories, novels, or poems. We are especially interested in studies concerning race and women’s regionalism. Sandra Zagarell’s essay, “Portrayal of Community and the Exclusion of Difference” broached the topic of racial inclusion and exclusion in women’s regionalism. Most of Freeman’s characters are heavily coded as white, except in Madelon (1896) and The Heart’s Highway (1900). Do her texts contain new insight into whiteness? What new approaches to race and women’s regionalism might be developed in the twenty-first century? Was Freeman more progressive on matters of racial identity and belonging than readers might expect? We’ll put together a coherent panel based on the best of the submissions.

The American Literature Association’s 33rd annual conference will meet at the Palmer House Hilton May 26-29, 2022 (Thursday through Sunday of Memorial Day weekend). For further information about the ALA conference, please consult the ALA website at or contact the conference director, Professor Leslie Petty, at or the Executive Director of the ALA, Professor Alfred Bendixen of Princeton University, at with specific questions.

For the Freeman Society panel, please send 250-word proposals and a brief CV to Stephanie Palmer at and Myrto Drizou at by January 20th, 2022.