Writing Techniques in Herland

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Because of its function as a social document, a Utopian novel often lacks some of the aesthetic merits of fiction. The story, in short, often becomes secondary to the political message contained in the narration.

One of Gilman's greatest assets as a writer is her competence as both a pragmatic, reasonable producer of political tracts and imaginative, innovative spinner of yarns.

Having produced both short stories and nonfiction polemics, Gilman combined her talents to produce a book that is at once highly readable and dense with carefully constructed criticisms of and solutions to the status quo. Aside from its political import, Herland contains real drama that might appeal to the casual reader.

The first few chapters read as any story of high adventure. The opening pages are rich with detailed descriptions of the exotic lands of South America where Herland is hidden. As the three explorers carry out...

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This section contains 371 words
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Buy the Herland Study Guide
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