Symbolism In The Yellow Wallpaper

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“This came directly from [my] personal experience” (Oakley 5), said Charlotte Perkins Gilman 20 years after she wrote the short story, “The Yellow Wallpaper”. It is a story of a woman's demoted status by a man and how she was in a mental declining state and ended up going crazy because of the medication she was being treated with, which was mainly to lock her away in an isolated room until the problem vanished. The medicine that was prescribed to her was given repeatedly to women with “madness” and nervous conditions during like hers during the time. More importantly, the story is how the male controls her dominantly and throws strikes at her just like the rest of society did to women at the time. The narrator in the story is symbolic for all women during the time the story was written. During that time women were expected, unless otherwise told, to have children and take care of the home. Since only men were privileged with education, they were the ones that held all of the major occupations and make all the major decisions in the household as well. Therefore, women always ended up being tossed into the prison of submission to men, because they lived in a world where the men were far superior to women in the view of society as well as the household. Because of the time where men subdue women, John, who was the narrator's husband, is the one in total control of the narrator during the story. During the story the author also implies that it’s a mixture of social control from society, along with the weakness the woman has that adds to issue that men we superior over of women. These things in the story give women the disability to make their own decisions or any other opposition to men. John, the husband, was a representation... ... middle of paper ... ...that she is "creeping" over John, and it shows that a woman is not really different at all from a man, especially in the condition of being a self governed. People need control over their own lives and the ability to make their own choices, good or bad, even women. People can’t always make the assumption that they know what the best option for others is. We have learned this in “The Yellow Wallpaper” from John: He proves the best way to help someone is having the patience to fully listen and find out their personal needs or wants, not by making assumptions for the person about what is right for them when it may not even be in the other persons interest. Until every woman is treated with respect in this fashion, she wont have any other option but to turn insane and become crazy, where she will end up "creeping" over anyone with the attempt of controlling her.
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