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A Feminist Looks at Education - The Educational Philosophy of Charlotte Perkins Gilman


by Karen E. Maloney — 1998

Charlotte Perkins Gilman is very known today as the author of “The Yellow Wallpaper." It is not generally known that she also developed a systematic and powerful philosophy of education. In this article I present and analyze her educational theory using three conceptions of education that are found throughout her theoretical writings and her utopian novel Herland: education as social nourishment, education as social parentage, and education as social motherhood. I analyze the strengths and limitations of these three conceptions as metaphorical statements about education. I also discuss the incisive feminist insights that Gilman’s theory contains, and the radical ramifications it has, for the role of women in society and the nature of education as a social organization and function. I conclude by discussing what her theory has to offer educators today.


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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 99 Number 3, 1998, p. 514-536
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 10275, Date Accessed: 12/16/2017 5:43:45 PM

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