Herland and Related Writings
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.