She admits with discomfort, “So I take phosphates or phosphites-whichever it is, and tonics, and journeys, and airs, and exercise, and am absolutely forbidden to “work” until I am well again”(Gilman 956). Although she would know if she was sick and what would make her feel better more than anyone else, she is forced to go along with her husband’s elaborate plan for her path to recovery. “Every time the narrator speaks, she is interrupted and contradicted until she begins to interrupt and contradict herself” (Ford). Although the narrator is a woman, she has a male discourse because her husband speaks for her. The story teller does not like her room and desires to stay in one downstairs that opens o... ... middle of paper ... ...l. Men thought they knew what was best, and ignored the desires of the women.
Women were sort of in an “imprisonment” controlled by all men. In “The Yellow Wallpaper,” Jane, the main character, is a woman suffering from postpartum. Jane’s husband is a Physician who thinks there is nothing wrong with her and because of the time period Jane could not get through to her husband that there really was something wrong with her. “John laughs at me, of course, but one expects that in marriage” (Gilman). John was putting a mental strain on Jane by isolating her and thinking that there is nothing wrong with her.
Her environment feels to her very much like a prison with her husband merely pushing aside her feelings of distaste, believing that giving in and listening to her desires will only worsen her condition. When the narrator wishes for the walls to be fixed, her husband refuses, stating “nothing was worse for a nervous patient than to give way to such fancies. After the wall-paper was changed it would be the heavy bedstead, and then the barred windows, and then that gate at the head of the stairs, and so on” (Gilman 3). The narrator feels entrapped by the house’s bars and gates, but her husband in no way gives her feelings consideration and he refuses to change her environment, therefore keeping her imprisoned within the house, the gilded cage, and her mind. Although the house illustrates feminist views a great deal, the greatest setting to emphasize those views is the wallpaper in the bedroom; “At night in any kind of light, in twilight, candlelight, lamplight, and worst of all by moonlight, it becomes bars!” (Gilman 7).
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. As the story begins, the woman-whose name we never learn-tells of her depression and how it is dismissed by her husband and brother who are both medical practitioners.
In Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s short story “The Yellow Wallpaper,” a woman who suffers severe depression identifies the suppressive influences of society upon women in the exemplification of a woman being strangled by the domestic patterns of society behind yellow wallpaper. Readers witness the woman undergo various changes from being a compliant woman who obeys her husband, to a woman who breaks free from the chains of societal norms, which include being the submissive sex in matrimony. At first the woman seems to be living in a fantasy as she characterizes her husband and caretaker as kind and concerned with her well being, when in reality they are suppressive and limiting. To begin with, the woman of the story explains how, “[her husband was] very careful and loving, and hardly lets [her] stir without special direction” (Gilman 239). This quote shows the woman’s inconsistency with reality as she does not recognize that her husband had brought her to an asylum in order to “cure” her illness.
Through the interaction between the characters, and the wife’s inner thoughts, one can say that the women during the time period had very little or no freedom of speech. As well, the confined surroundings around the wife represent how oppressed and imprisoned women were physically and mentally. Gilman’s feminist writing of The Yellow Wallpaper gained her a little bit of that power and freedom she so desired. Gender roles and power differences must be removed from the social order for women to ever be free and equal to those of men—only then will social harmony prosper. Works Cited Gilman, Charlotte Perkins.
Gilman was an inspirational western feminist that shared her experience of depression and nervousness through her short story The Yellow Wallpaper. Women in this story are portrayed as a minority gender. For example Jane isn’t allowed think for her self, move without her husbands permission, or even have a say in her treatment. Her husband John is a physician of high standing in society that is looked highly upon. For this reason, John feels that he has the right to imprison his wife and brainwash her into thinking that she really is... ... middle of paper ... ...y, which eventually leads to her thriving for independence from men authority.
Nearly every mention of John is coupled with the details of his belittling her feelings of nervousness, and insisting that she is not sick and that a few months of bed rest would cure her of her nervous mind. His suggested cure screams oppression, recommending that she not do any sort of physical work or mental strain. John controls nearly every aspect of his wife’s life, including her daily leisurely activities; the narrator seems to enjoy writing, for instance, but when she hears her husband approaching she quickly puts her writings away, claiming, “There comes John, and I must put this away—he hates to see me write a word” (674). John often refers to her as a “little girl,” implying that she is a young child in need of care and guidance instead of the grown, fully capable woman that she ... ... middle of paper ... ... with the yellow wallpaper; she is, after all, not supposed to be writing, per her husband’s wishes, yet the entire story is told as if the narrator herself was writing it. Also, her husband asks that she nap throughout the day; while she does pretend that she is napping, so as to not catch scorn from her husband, she instead inspects the yellow wallpaper that surrounds her in an attempt to decipher it.
According to O’Connor-Salomon, Charlotte Perkins life was plagued with psychological issues that might have originated before her first marriage (251). O’Connor-Salomon narrates that Weir Mitchell could not conclusively treat Charlotte’s mental illness. Weir Mitchell was a famous shrink recognized for his work in hysteria and mentioned in "The Yellow Wallpaper" as the doctor that her husband threatens to take her to see if her condition did not improve. In the analysis of Charlotte Perkins work and previous writings, O’Connor-Salomon finds out that Charlotte considers herself a man and has no desire for marriage unless she is the one marrying the man. Just like the narrator in the story, Charlotte Perkins marries a doctor and suffers from mental illness.
She suffered from a severe postpartum depression case, yet her marriage depressed her too. The narrator was in a marriage whereby her husband dominated and treated her like a child. Her husband was the sole decision maker and since she lived in a society whereby women were never allowed to question their husband’s decisio... ... middle of paper ... ...he stopped being the protector and the only rational thinker in the family. In this short story, the men had power over women and they undermined them. The narrator insisted to her husband that she was sick, but he never took her serious instead, he confined her in an isolated place away from home and her child.