A Look into the Life of Charlotte Perkins Gilman and ?The Yellow Wall-paper?

1396 Words6 Pages
“The Yellow Wall-paper” is an amazing story that demonstrates how close-minded the world was a little over a hundred years ago. In the late eighteen hundreds, women were seen as personal objects that are not capable of making a mark in the world. If a woman did prove to be a strong intellectual person and had a promising future, they were shut out from society. Charlotte Perkins Gilman wrote her stories from experience, but added fictional twists along the way to make her stories interesting. Charlotte Perkins Gilman grew up in a broken home without the presence of her father. Charlotte eventually moved away from her home with her mother and sister. Charlotte tried to keep in contact with her father, but he did not want any part of the contact. Being rejected by her father, and not receiving any affection from her cold-hearted mother set the tone for the way she would live her life. After one failed marriage with a child, Charlotte did not believe that there was much left for her. Charlotte took her emotions and construed them into a positive thing, her writing. Just like the woman in the story, “The Yellow Wall-paper”, Charlotte was sick. The doctors prescribed the “rest cure” for Charlotte. This prescription meant that she had to stay in bed for weeks on end, and had to limit her intellectual activities (Gilman 831). Charlotte was also instructed to live as much of a domestic life as she could. The doctors and her husband wanted her to stay home to cook, clean, and tend to their child. Staying in your own house, in your own bed for that long of a time would drive any person the slightest bit of crazy. During this time is when Charlotte Perkins Gilman wrote, “The Yellow Wall-paper”. “The Yellow Wall-paper” portrays realism in its finest. Realism is defined as the representation in art or literature of objects, actions, or social conditions as they actually are, without idealization or presentation in abstract form (dictionary.com). It must have been easy for Charlotte to write this literary work. Not only did Charlotte have all the time in the world, but she was also a feminist (Hudak). When a person has enough time, and a just cause, wonderful literary works can happen. There is no better way to get emotions, ideas, and worries out into society than writing about what you believe in. This story is almost an autobiographical account of Charlotte Perk... ... middle of paper ... ...estic work when she could. Not being able to express her inner feelings made her want to write everything down so much more. Jane then realized that she was being oppressed by the men in her life. Jane was not a strong woman, so she drove herself insane just to escape the reality that she was in. If the story of, “The Yellow Wall-paper” would have continued from its finishing point, I believe that Jane would have went even more mad and most likely would have killed herself to escape her own self-torture. Much like how Charlotte Perkins Gilman committed suicide in her own life. “The next year, suffering from breast cancer and convinced that her productive life was over, she committed suicide with chloroform she had long been accumulating” (Gilman 832). Charlotte Perkins Gilman was a lonely, insane woman, but her creativity got her through some hard times. Writing “The Yellow Wall-paper” helped to created an outlet for Charlotte’s personal emotions. Charlotte and the main character of the story, Jane, are one and the same. After reading background information on Charlotte and reading “The Yellow Wall-paper”, it’s obvious that Charlotte was writing about what she knew; insanity.
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