Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s Analogues — Reiterating the Social Health

  • Janet Beer


All readers of Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s work know that she tells the same stories over and over again. This feature of her writing I would like to describe as the writing of the analogue — the cognate story — which, in Gilman’s work, is recognisable through its intramural narrative affinities. In Gilman’s fiction the use of the analogue is more than the mere repetition of particular plots or themes, it is crucial to any understanding of the way in which she organised and expressed both her art and her ideology especially where she is dealing with the relationship between the individual and the social health. In describing her reiteration of stories in this way it is possible to see how she uses particular analogues to place in consistent contradistinction male and female positions on the question of the present, past and future of the constitution of a morally and physically fit society.


Transmitted Disease Social Health Venereal Disease Romantic Love Congenital Syphilis 
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Copyright information

© Janet Beer 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Janet Beer
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of EnglishRoehampton InstituteLondonUK

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