Anna Wenner ♦ 2015 Global Scholars Symposium
Title: What’s in a Name?
Abstract: When they first submitted their books for publishing, Joann Rowling (aka, J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter series) and Susan Hinton (aka, S.E. Hinton, author of The Outsiders) were told by their publisher to use initials rather than their first names in order to conceal their gender from readers. The publishers justified this by saying boys would be less likely to read a book that they knew was written by a female author. As it turns out, this long-standing bias had no real research to back it up. Instead, it was based on the perceptions of the publishers and the existing gender bias of the publishing industry.