Analysis Of Gilman 's The Yellow Wallpaper

Analysis Of Gilman 's The Yellow Wallpaper

Length: 1373 words (3.9 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview


Although Gilman herself doesn’t class herself as a feminist, there are clear representations of the feminist ideology throughout The Yellow Wallpaper. Gilman may have denied this relation due to similar reasons as the Bronte sisters when they used male pseudonyms to publish their work - as the feminist movement didn’t gain momentum until the 1960’s whilst the Yellow Wallpaper was published in 1891. The main feminist theories in The Yellow Wallpaper this essay focuses on are; male characters relations with women, the blinding effects of ideology, cultural stereotypes in literature and the idea of all women being ‘essentially helpless’.
One particular feminist critic whose work can be applied to The Yellow Wallpaper is Millett who argues ‘most male characters were denigrating, exploitative and repressive in their relations with women.’ (Anthology page 7) We can see this in lines such as ‘the windows are barred for little children’ (page 5) when the narrator is talking about the room her husband is making her stay in thus making the argument that John, her husband, is being repressive towards her as he’s restricting her freedom or ability to escape as a parent would a child. There are also a lot of other sections in the text where John treats her as a child such as ‘what is it, little girl?’ (page 11) when questioning her and ‘bless her little heart’ (page 12). The repetition of the word little could be a representation of him thinking he is much more superior to her. However, others may class this as a term of endearment and say it is just his way of showing her affection. Other examples of John being exploitative can be seen when the narrator says ‘John laughs at me, of course, but one expects that in marriage’ (page 3) this lin...


... middle of paper ...


...nternational human rights and allows everyone to have opinions; feminist critics would argue that in The Yellow Wallpaper and other texts written at the time this right is taken away from women. This can be linked to the blinding effects of ideology and male characters relations with women.

Overall it is clear that feminist criticism plays a key role in opening up meanings throughout The Yellow Wallpaper. Although Gilman’s main objective with the short story was to ‘save people from being driven crazy [due to the same illness she suffered from]’ (Appendix B) in the modern day it can be used as an outlook on how women were treated and viewed in the 19th century. It also helps support the feminist theory and backs up many theories as it is taken from Gilman’s personal predicament - ‘For many years I suffered from a severe and continuous nervous breakdown’ (Appendix B)

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Analysis Of The Yellow Wallpaper By Charlotte Perkins Gilman

- Analysis of The Yellow Wallpaper Gender played a very large role in the short story The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman. It symbolizes the way women were viewed in the 1800’s by society and most importantly, men. The narrator in the story believes that she is sick with a nervous condition. Her husband being a physician, down plays it and forces a treatment of completely isolating her in a room from the outside world, as well as restricting her from being active and writing. As the narrator writes in her hidden journal, we start to discover how peculiar she really is when she becomes obsessed with the yellow wallpaper....   [tags: Charlotte Perkins Gilman, The Yellow Wallpaper]

Better Essays
1396 words (4 pages)

Analysis Of ' The Yellow Wallpaper ' By Charlotte Perkins Gilman

- Nandanie George Professor John Hodgkins English 352 March 1, 2016 Depiction of Madness in The Yellow Wallpaper In the short story, “The Yellow Wallpaper,” author Charlotte Perkins Gilman gives us a chance to see into the mind of a woman during the Victorian Era who is gradually becoming insane. Her insanity is incomprehensibly brought on by efforts made by her physician husband and brother to help restore her psychological well-being. Through out the story, the narrator is living a stereotypical lifestyle of a mother and a wife who is hindered and oppressed....   [tags: Charlotte Perkins Gilman, The Yellow Wallpaper]

Better Essays
1200 words (3.4 pages)

Analysis of The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Gilman

- Analysis of The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Gilman The "Yellow Wallpaper" by Charlotte Gilman is a great story about the repression of women in the late 1800's but is still representative of issues faced by women today. She writes from her own personal experiences and conveys a message that sometimes in a male dominated society women suffer from the relentless power that some men implement over women. The narrator is suffering from a mild depression that her physician husband has prescribed complete bed rest in order for her to recover....   [tags: The Yellow Wallpaper, Charlotte Gilman]

Free Essays
301 words (0.9 pages)

An Analysis Of Charlotte Gilman 's ' The Yellow Wallpaper '

- The Unravelling of an Unstable Mind In Charlotte Gilman’s short story “The Yellow Wallpaper”, she portrays the true importance of individualism in desperate times of need. In the story, Gilman depicts the unraveling of an unstable woman battling what could be postpartum depression. The narrator and her husband John, who also happens to be her physician, move into a rental home for the summer so that she is able to rest and recover. Shortly, she finds herself frequently examining the pattern of a hideous yellow wallpaper that resides in her room....   [tags: Charlotte Perkins Gilman, The Yellow Wallpaper]

Better Essays
1132 words (3.2 pages)

Analysis Of Charlotte Perkins Gilman 's ' The Yellow Wallpaper '

- Throughout many circumstances in life, people encounter difficult tasks in which they must persevere in order to reach success. In these various situations, people decide to make rather rash decisions which changes their lives forever. This is the case in The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman. The narrator, Charlotte Perkins, in this story becomes mad due to a depression called post-partum. Due to this depression and the wrong treatment, the narrator ends up murdering her husband John with an axe....   [tags: Charlotte Perkins Gilman, The Yellow Wallpaper]

Better Essays
1244 words (3.6 pages)

A Critical Analysis of The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

- A Critical Analysis of The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman 'The Yellow Wallpaper' written by Charlotte Perkins Gilman is a riveting story of a dejected woman locked away as if she were insane. Her passion is to write and by doing so we are able to follow her on a journey in which she is victimized by those closest to her. The significance of the story is tremendous as it delves into the underlying issues of 'a woman's place' and feminism in the 19th century. The story not only gave an insight into the public perception of mental illness but it later caused a famous psychiatrist, Silas Weir Mitchell to alter his treatment of neurasthema....   [tags: Yellow Wallpaper Wall Paper Charlotte Gilman]

Better Essays
1225 words (3.5 pages)

Analysis Of The Book ' The Yellow Wallpaper ' By Charlotte Gilman

- The dilemma in the marriage of Jane and John in ’The Yellow Wallpaper’ by Charlotte Gilman is a result of the inclusion of secondary sources. This causes an imbalance in a ’private’ institution such as marriage. It is inevitable that the marriage suffers by public invasion, but the imbalance is far more complicated. The couple condones prominent positions from outsiders and neglects  one another making public opinions triumph each others personal feelings. The secrecy and distance portrayed by the couple in Gilman’s story, ’The Yellow Wallpaper’  depicts the strong authority and detriment secondary sources have on marriage such that their passions as people  could not coincide as a couple, t...   [tags: Family, Marriage, Charlotte Perkins Gilman]

Better Essays
715 words (2 pages)

Analysis Of Charlotte Perkins Gilman 's ' The Yellow Wallpaper '

- When comparing the works of Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Betty Friedan, and Bell Hooks, I assert that both Gilman and Friedan stress that college educated, white upper- and middle-class women should have the incentive to fight against and alter the rigid boundaries of marriage; however, Hooks in her piece From Margin to Center argues that Friedan and other feminist writers during the second wave had written or spoke shortsightedly, failing to regard women of other races and classes who face the most sexist oppression....   [tags: Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Feminism]

Better Essays
737 words (2.1 pages)

Analysis Of Gilman 's The Yellow Wallpaper

- 1. How does Gilman use the setting, her narrator 's "prison" upstairs, to represent the narrator 's predicament. What does her confinement tell us, if anything, about a woman 's position in society at the time of the story 's events. In Gilman’s “The Yellow Wallpaper”, the narrator’s setting in an environment similar to that of a prison helps represent the narrator’s powerlessness over herself and her medical care. In her description of the room, the narrator states, “the windows are barred for little children, and there are rings and things in the walls” (Gilman), in addition to mentioning a gate at the top of the steps and a “great immovable bed” (Gilman)....   [tags: Marriage, Wife, 19th century]

Better Essays
1877 words (5.4 pages)

Analysis Of Gilman 's The Yellow Wallpaper

- Although Gilman herself doesn’t class herself as a feminist, there are clear representations of the feminist ideology throughout The Yellow Wallpaper. Gilman may have denied this relation due to similar reasons as the Bronte sisters when they used male pseudonyms to publish their work - as the feminist movement didn’t gain momentum until the 1960’s whilst the Yellow Wallpaper was published in 1891. The main feminist theories in The Yellow Wallpaper this essay focuses on are; male characters relations with women, the blinding effects of ideology, cultural stereotypes in literature and the idea of all women being ‘essentially helpless’....   [tags: Feminism, Feminist theory]

Better Essays
1373 words (3.9 pages)