“Have you no respect for the past? For what was thought and believed by your foremothers?”
“Why, no,” she said. “Why should we? They are all gone. They knew less than we do. If we are not beyond them, we are unworthy of them—and unworthy of the children who must go beyond us.”
― Charlotte Perkins Gilman,
Imagine a world without fear, war, and domination–a fruitful and advanced society where peace and intelligence are paramount. In 1915, feminist Charlotte Perkins Gilman did just this by writing the novel Herland. Naturally, this utopian world was composed entirely of females. Secluded from the modern world, these women established a realm so advanced that the few men who found it refused to recognize it.
However, the heaven of Herland lies in its believability. Women were born and born again as teachers, scientists, linguists, and sisters. In this world without imposition, hope was born out of hopelessness, and with it, a new race. Education was a high art and kindness irreplaceable. Their central role in the novel is built to challenge our expectations; with a visiting man noting “those ‘feminine charms’ we are so fond of are not feminine at all, but mere reflected masculinity—developed to please us because they had to please us, and in no way essential to the real fulfillment of their great process.”
The unyielding strength and persistence of such womankind is captured in us, made ever stronger by unity. Women together are a force and a cure; an energy we are more than ready for.
Photographer: Bethony Harnden
HMUA: Whitney Chen, Christine Rafie
Models: Maiya Evans, Madi Gordon, Allison Lopez, Melina Perez, Clare Robinson
Stylist: Erin Kuykendall
Photoshoot Coordinator: Melina Perez
Clothing by Friends and Neighbors