Sinclair Lewis Books

Easton Press Sinclair Lewis books:
Main Street - 1965
Babbitt - 1999

Franklin Library Sinclair Lewis books:
Arrowsmith - Pulitzer Prize Classics - 1975
Main Street - 100 Greatest Masterpieces of American Literature - 1978
Main Street - World's Best Loved Books - 1979
Stories by Sinclair Lewis - Collected Stories of the World's Greatest Writers - 1981

Sinclair Lewis (1885-1951) was an American novelist who was born in Sauk Center, Minnesota, and educated at Yake University. From 1907 to 1916 Sinclair Lewis was a newspaper reporter and an editor for a number of magazines and a publishing house. Lewis' earliest books, Our Mr Wrenn (1914) and The Trail of the Hawk (1915), were conventional and unoriginal; he first began to write with literary originality in his book The Job (1917), a realistic story of New York City. In Main Street (1920) Sinclair Lewis first developed the theme which would characterize most of his later books; the dullness, monotony, emotional frustration, and lack of spiritual and intellectual values in various types of American middle class life, especially the life of the Midwestern small town. His book Babbit (1922) is a merciless satire of the middle class American businessman who conforms blindly to the materialistic social and ethical standards and practices of his environment; the term "babbit", identifying a businessman of this type, is now a part of the English language. In Arrowsmith (1925) Sinclair Lewis exposed the lack of scientific idealism sometimes seen in medical professions; Elmer Gantry (1927) was a violent attack on a type of hypocritical and mercenary religious leader; and The Men Who Knew Coolidge (1928) is another satire of an average businessman. In Dodsworth (1929) Sinclair Lewis satirized the egotistic, shallow, pretensions, and selfish married woman sometimes seen among the American upper middle class circles. The books mentioned above are generally considered the best books by Sinclair Lewis. Others of his books are Ann Vickers (1933), which deals with a woman social reformer; Work of Art (1934), another story of a successful businessman; It Can't Happen Here (1935), a story about a future revolution leading to fascist control in the United States; The Prodigal Parents (1938); Bethel Merriday (1940), a novel of stage life; Cass Timberlane (1945); Kingblood Royal (1947), a novel about racial intolerance; and The God Seeker (1949). Sinclair Lewis was also a playwright; among his plays are Hobohemia (1919), a dramatization of Dodsworth (with Sidney Coe Howard, 1934), and Jayhawker (with Lloyd Lewis, 1934). From Main Street to Stockholm, a collection of his letters, was published posthumously in 1952.

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