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Herland | Study Guide

Charlotte Perkins Gilman

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Herland | Chapter Summaries

See Chapter Summaries Chart

Timeline of Events

  • Late 1800s

    Terry, Jeff, and Van go on an expedition and hear about a land of women.

    Chapter 1
  • A few months later

    They set out to find Herland and are successful.

    Chapter 2
  • Upon arrival

    The men meet Celis, Alima, and Ellador.

    Chapter 2
  • A few hours later

    The men are imprisoned.

    Chapter 3
  • Months later

    Influenced by Terry, the men escape.

    Chapter 3
  • Several days later

    They are recaptured and returned to their prison.

    Chapter 4
  • Six months later

    The men give lectures and are allowed to travel freely.

    Chapter 5
  • Shortly thereafter

    They meet the three women again and begin courtships.

    Chapter 8
  • Immediately following

    They court and eventually wed.

    Chapter 10
  • Within weeks

    Terry attempts to rape Alima but is stopped.

    Chapter 11
  • Soon after

    Terry, Van, and Ellador prepare to leave Herland.

    Chapter 12

Chapter Summaries Chart

Chapter Summary
Chapter 1 The novel starts with the information that this is written "from memory." The narrator, Van, tells the reader there were... Read More
Chapter 2 The three men encounter several of the women—Alima, Celis, and Ellador—in the boughs of trees. Terry attempts to capture... Read More
Chapter 3 Van, the narrator, wakes in a comfortable bed in a "big room, high and wide, with many lofty windows." All three men are... Read More
Chapter 4 After their escape, the men continue their descent into the ravine, stocking up on nuts, and resting behind foliage. The... Read More
Chapter 5 The men are kept in the fortress for six months. During this time, they exchange information with their tutors. They lea... Read More
Chapter 6 From history, Van, Terry, Jeff, and the women go on to exchange information on many fields—geography, anthropology, phys... Read More
Chapter 7 The chapter begins with the men preparing to be free, grooming and tending to their clothes. Van muses on the men's rela... Read More
Chapter 8 The men are invited to give talks to audiences and classes. These lectures reveal that although the men had considered t... Read More
Chapter 9 This chapter is about education in Herland. It begins by addressing more of the differences between the country and the ... Read More
Chapter 10 The bulk of the chapter is a discussion on religion. The Herlanders practice a religion that deified motherhood, but in ... Read More
Chapter 11 The differences between the two worlds are nowhere more obvious to the men than in the issue of marriage. The women are ... Read More
Chapter 12 Van addresses the fact that he and his friends never meant to stay in Herland for very long, but a year has passed since... Read More
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