Herland and Related Writings
  • Publication Date: November 8, 2012
  • ISBN: 9781551119878 / 1551119870
  • 275 pages; 5½" x 8½"

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Herland and Related Writings

  • Publication Date: November 8, 2012
  • ISBN: 9781551119878 / 1551119870
  • 275 pages; 5½" x 8½"

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Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s provocative utopian novel Herland, first published in 1915, tells its story through the observations of three male explorers who discover a land inhabited solely by women; the women reproduce through parthenogenesis (asexual reproduction). Initially skeptical, the explorers come to realize that Herland has evolved into an ideal, cooperative, matriarchal society—fertile, peaceful, and clean—by selectively reproducing the women’s best attributes. As the explorers study Herland culture, they also rethink their own.

This edition reproduces the text originally published in The Forerunner in 1915, including several passages omitted from other editions. Stories, poetry, and nonfiction writing by Gilman on topics such as birth control, capital punishment, and eugenics provide a rich context for the novel. Materials originally published alongside Herland in 1915, many of which have never before been republished, are also included, as is an excerpt from the sequel, With Her in Ourland.


“A splendid classroom edition of Gilman’s best-known novel. Not only does Beth Sutton-Ramspeck restore some passages omitted by previous editors of the text, her introduction and selection of ‘related writings’ smartly situate the story and the controversial issues it raises—political, biological, social, architectural, environmental, literary, and economic—in the context of Gilman’s life and times.” — Gary Scharnhorst, University of New Mexico

“This edition importantly positions Gilman alongside authors often associated with her—such as socialist and fellow utopian writer Edward Bellamy—and those rarely paired with her, such as nature writer John Muir. Likewise, Herland and Related Writings brings together excerpts from seminal Gilman works with her lesser-known works, and, of real interest, materials that appeared in The Forerunner in 1915 alongside Herland. In her introduction, Beth Sutton-Ramspeck concludes provocatively in speculating on Gilman’s response to approaches to her still prescient novel.” — Catherine Golden, Skidmore College

“While numerous editions of Herland have appeared in the years since the novel’s recovery, Beth Sutton-Ramspeck’s Herland and Related Writings will prove an invaluable resource for scholars and students alike. The carefully chosen “Related Writings” consist of selections from Gilman’s wide-ranging oeuvre, including, in an inspired editorial decision, materials appearing alongside Herland in the 1915 run of The Forerunner. Ancillary materials usefully complement and clarify Gilman’s best-known novel, making this new volume a welcome addition to Gilman scholarship.” — Cynthia Davis, University of South Carolina, Columbia

Charlotte Perkins Gilman: A Brief Chronology
A Note on the Text


Related Writings


  • “Five Girls” (1894)
    “The Unnatural Mother” (1895)
    “When I Was a Witch” (1910)
    “Bee Wise” (1913)


  • “She Walketh Veiled and Sleeping” (1889)
    “Females” (1892)


  • From Women and Economics (1898)
    From A Woman’s Utopia (1907)
    From “Effect of Literature upon the Mind” (1912)
    “Imprisonment for Life” (1912)
    “As to Parthenogenesis and Humanity” (1916)
    From His Religion and Hers (1923)
    From The Living of Charlotte Perkins Gilman (1935)

Materials That Appeared in The Forerunner in 1915, alongside Herland

  • “Standardizing Towns” (February 1915)
    “War-Maids and War-Widows” (March 1915)
    From The Dress of Women (May 1915)
    “Birth Control” (July 1915)
    “Full Motherhood” (October 1915)
    “Having Faith in Evolution” (November 1915)
    “Looking Across” (December 1915)

From With Her in Ourland (1916), the Sequel to Herland

Appendix A: Travel and Nature Writing

  1. From George Alsop, Character of the Province of Mary-Land (1666)
  2. From John Muir, The Yosemite (1912)

Appendix B: Social Theories Addressed in Herland

  1. Edward Bellamy, “Socialism and Nationalism” (1894)
  2. From Josephine Tozier, “The Montessori Schools in Rome” (1911)
  3. Sir Almroth E. Wright, “Suffrage Fallacies” (1912)

Appendix C: Scientific and Eugenic Theories Addressed in Herland

  1. From Herbert Spencer, Social Statics (1851)
  2. Francis Galton, “Eugenics: Its Definition, Scope, and Aims” (1904)
  3. From Lester Frank Ward, “Our Better Halves” (1888)

Select Bibliography

Beth Sutton-Ramspeck is Associate Professor of English at The Ohio State University at Lima and the editor of the Broadview Edition of Mary Augusta Ward’s Marcella.