Charlotte Perkins Gilman

Start Free Trial

What’s a good introduction into the life of Charlotte Perkins Gilman?

A good introduction into the life of Charlotte Perkins Gilman would mention her great contribution to the women's rights movement. It would also provide some information about her personal life, including her failed marriage and her unusual attitude to being a mother.

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

If you’re putting together an essay or a presentation about Charlotte Perkins Gilman, then your introduction will need to contain enough interesting information to get your audience interested in the rest of what you have to say about this remarkable lady.

For example, you could include some anecdotes about Charlotte’s personal life, because she was no ordinary young wife when she married Charles W. Stetson in 1884. She balked at the domesticity of marriage, and it ended up sending her into a nervous collapse. She divorced her husband some ten years later, and when he quickly remarried one of her friends, her response was to send her daughter to live with the newlyweds.

From there, your introduction could mention her literature by bringing up “The Yellow WallPaper,” one of the short stories which she had published, which is clearly the story of everything that went wrong in her marriage.

It would also be important to mention that Charlotte became a key figure in the fight for woman’s rights and that her later work “Women and Economics” called for economic freedom for women, eschewing the traditional roles of women and mothers.

You could add an extra element of intrigue to the introduction of your presentation or essay by surprising your audience with the fact that Charlotte later took her own life after cancer treatment proved ineffective.

Remember, your introduction should always outline what the rest of your essay or presentation will be about, so it’s important to get all the information that you want to impart together before you finalize your introduction.

See eNotes Ad-Free

Start your 48-hour free trial to get access to more than 30,000 additional guides and more than 350,000 Homework Help questions answered by our experts.

Get 48 Hours Free Access
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team