January 28 Notes: "Herland"

Charlotte Perkins Gilman was a prominent social critic and feminist writer in the United States of the period from the 1890s through the 1930s. In Herland, originally published in 1915, Gilman creates a utopian society made up entirely of women, creating around this homosocial (or one-sex) society a culture, political system, and familial arrangement that grew out of the society of women, rather than simply the absence of men. While other American utopian novels, such as Edward Bellamy's Looking Backward, were prominently read for years after their publication, Herland was largely forgotten until it was republished in the 1970s. Gilman's readers in the 1970s found in Herland a fresh and funny satire, full of insights that still speak to the condition of American women even after eighty years. (http://www.library.csi.cuny.edu/dept/history/lavender/herland.html)


"Herland" 1915

Time of place: Early twentieth century

Locale: An isolated mountain plateau, possibly in Asia or Africa, flanked by mountains and tropical forests

First published: 1915 (serial), 1979 (book)


Principal characters:




In Herland: