Charlotte Perkins Gilman - What Diantha Did
What Diantha Did
First published serially in Gilman's magazine the Forerunner in 1909-10, the novel tells the story of Diantha Bell, a young woman who leaves her home and her fiancé to start a housecleaning business. A resourceful heroine, Diantha quickly expands her business into an enterprise that includes a maid service, cooked food delivery service, restaurant, and hotel. By assigning a cash value to women's "invisible" work, providing a means for the well-being and moral uplift of working girls, and releasing middle- and leisure-class women from the burden of conventional domestic chores, Diantha proves to her family and community the benefits of professionalized housekeeping.