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Women and Economics

3.56 of 5 stars 3.56  ·  rating details  ·  137 ratings  ·  10 reviews
Startling in its observations and radical in its conclusions, this classic of women's rights literature, this work-by pioneering American feminist CHARLOTTE PERKINS GILMAN (1860-1935)-was a phenomenon when it was first published in 1898, and was eventually translated into in seven languages and reprinted around the world. From her characterization of women as virtual econo ...more
Paperback, 180 pages
Published December 1st 2006 by Cosimo Classics (first published 1898)
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Feb 05, 2014 Michael marked it as to-read-my-authors-and-series
At the time of its publication, the London Chronicle had this to say about Charlotte Perkins Gilman's Women and Economics: "Since John Stuart Mill's essay there has been no book dealing with the whole position of women to approach it in originality of conception and brilliancy of exposition."

Published in 1898, this is a public domain book, although not transcribed by Project Gutenberg as yet. I found copies here:

University of Pennsylvania "A Celebration of Women Writers" Project - entire text on
Weston Lindbeck
American Women Novelists: Senior/spring-2011
Just when I was really over Charlotte Perkins Gilman, I started reading this for my diss., and I am really excited by it! CPG argue that women are encouraged by society to be consumers rather than producers, particularly in the marriage-centered 19th century middle class culture she was a part of, and that this focus leads to a damaging individualism and lack of artistic and social progress. It's logical and easy to follow, totally worth reading.
Landmark work by Gilman, really putting into stark perspective Gilman's strident thoughts on women's status in society, and how that very much colored her fiction. I use this book in my Literature by Women course and in my Gender course to allow my students to analyze the (still) unbalanced economic status of women in our own society and in so much of the rest of the world.
This book was quite interesting. It's definitely a polemic, which isn't really my thing, but I did find some of her theories quite fascinating. I read this as a companion with The Professor's House, The Yellow Wallpaper, and The Awakening It provided a useful lens through which to view these texts, as well as a touchstone for discussion.
With such a dry title, I didn't expect such a witty -- even humorous, at times -- text. Gilman's tracing of the effects of women's economic dependence on men is eye-opening, even to a twenty-first century reader. This text serves as a reminder of the importance of female autonomy to a healthy society.
Jessica Klimesh
I think this book should be required reading for every teen-aged girl (although it would likely be over their heads). While a little "over the top," the viewpoint is necessary and pertinent.
Jaymi Boswell
Mar 22, 2008 Jaymi Boswell rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: women.
Recommended to Jaymi by: Caroline Hartse
I was assigned to do a report on Gilman in a college History class. I was sure I would hate it. I ended up liking her quick thinking on what needed to be done for woman's sake.
Revolutionary, and worth a read for a look at early feminism. A terrible shame that, like her other work, it's flawed by overt racism.
Feb 02, 2008 Laura marked it as to-read
cited in women's realities, women's choices
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Blamer Book Club: Women and Economics 7 29 Feb 12, 2012 07:17PM  
  • Woman in the Nineteenth Century
  • Working Sex: Sex Workers Write About a Changing Industry
  • Global Sex Workers: Rights, Resistance, and Redefinition
  • Women's Work: The First 20,000 Years Women, Cloth, and Society in Early Times
  • To Be Real: Telling the Truth and Changing the Face of Feminism
  • Counting for Nothing
  • Speculum of the Other Woman: New Edition
  • Yearning: Race, Gender, and Cultural Politics
  • Gender and Discourse
  • Family, Sex and Marriage in England 1500-1800 (Abridged, no footnotes)
  • The Sex Myth: Why Everything We're Told Is Wrong
  • Sex at the Margins: Migration, Labour Markets and the Rescue Industry
  • Work: A Story of Experience
  • Defending Pornography
  • Femininity
  • Sexy Origins and Intimate Things: The Rites and Rituals of Straights, Gays, Bis, Drags, Trans, Virgins, and Others
  • Belle de Jour's Guide to Men. Belle de Jour
  • Myths of Motherhood: How Culture Reinvents the Good Mother
Charlotte Perkins Gilman was a prominent American sociologist, novelist, writer of short stories, poetry, and non fiction, and a lecturer for social reform. She was a utopian feminist during a time when her accomplishments were exceptional for women, and she served as a role model for future generations of feminists because of her unorthodox concepts and lifestyle. Her best remembered work today i ...more
More about Charlotte Perkins Gilman...
The Yellow Wallpaper and Other Stories The Yellow Wallpaper Herland The Yellow Wallpaper and Other Writings (Bantam Classics) Herland, The Yellow Wall-Paper, and Selected Writings

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“There is no female mind. The brain is not an organ of sex. As well speak of a female liver.” 306 likes
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