Analysis Of Gilman 's ' The Yellow Wallpaper '

Analysis Of Gilman 's ' The Yellow Wallpaper '

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Women were not always equal to men, and in some ways women are still not equal to men. When​ ​“The​ ​Yellow​ ​Wallpaper”​ ​by​ ​Charlotte​ ​Perkins Gilman​ ​was​ ​released​ ​in​ ​the​ ​​New​ ​England​ ​Magazine​,​ ​the​ ​year​ ​was​ ​1892,​ ​and​ ​during​ ​this​ ​time, women​ ​were​ ​almost​ ​considered​ ​to​ ​be​ ​a​ ​different​ ​species. They did not have the same rights as men in any way and were treated as if they were incapable of being anything but housewives. For example, women were not allowed to vote, work, own property, write or even imagine. In “The Yellow Wallpaper” Gilman, describes this role of women in society in an interesting and intriguing way. Gilman was born on July 3, 1860 in Hartford, Connecticut. Her life was not a desirable one; she suffered from severe and continuous nervous breakdowns which could be due to her rough childhood. As for most women during this time, the cure was simply bed rest and domestic work because men felt as they knew what was best for women. This superiority of men over women is what Gilman refers to her short story. In​ ​Gilman’s​ ​“The​ ​Yellow Wallpaper,”​ ​she​ ​aspires​ ​to​ ​eliminate​ ​the​ ​false​ ​idea​ ​portrayed​ ​by​ ​society​ ​that​ ​women​ ​are​ ​inferior​ ​to men,​ ​and​ ​she​ ​does​ ​so​ ​by​ ​her​ ​use​ ​of​ ​motifs,​ ​imagery​ ​and​ ​symbolism.
Charlotte Perkins Gilman uses many different motifs in her story to display the false portrayal of women in society. One motif in particular that is significant to the story is the main character John’s constant disregard of the narrator. On many occasions, he laughs off what the narrator has to say or how she feels, or he will dismiss her with a comment such as “Bless her little heart!... Let’s improve the shining hours by ...


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...te “The Yellow Wallpaper” with a goal in mind. That goal was to destroy the incorrect display of a woman’s role in society and the idea that this role involved women being inferior to men. She delivered her message in the story through her strategic use of motifs, imagery, and symbolism. Although John constantly disregarded the narrator as men do to women and insisted his knowledge was the best, the narrator did not allow that to stop her from writing and imagining, and eventually, she breaks free from the pattern of society. When John caughts her shedding the wallpaper, he actually faints and falls to the floor, and even though he has passed out, the narrator exclaims, “I had to creep over him every time” (Gilman 803). This final line explains how even when it seems like men have stepped down and are not looking superciliously upon women, they are still in the way.

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