The Yellow Wallpaper Symbolism Essay

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As human beings, we play the cards that are dealt to us in this world. In life, every person goes through their individual ups and downs and occasionally may break down to the extent of not knowing what to do with oneself. In the short story “The Yellow Wallpaper” which takes place in the late 1800s, focuses on the first person narrator who is an infatuated woman. The disheartening story concentrates on a woman who is suffering from postpartum depression, and as well had mental breakdowns. The narrators husband John, moves her into a home isolated in the country where he wants her to “rest” and get better from her illness. During the course of being confined in the room with the wallpaper, she learns new things and finally may have an understanding…show more content…
It represents the psychological block that society attempts to place on women during the 1800’s. The color distinct color yellow is connected with sickness and weakness which displays the gender differences of how society sees women as weak and men inferior. The wallpaper in fact makes the main character feel “sick” as the short story develops. As a matter of fact, the wallpaper draws a line between insanity and sanity that the narrator faces. Quawas offers honest insight and advice on “The Yellow Wallpaper,” and its symbolic significance that is portrayed throughout the short story. In the process, Quawas offers a deeper interpretation of the main character decline into madness and how the direct identification of the narrator with the wallpaper brings many underlying symbols that lie within the story. “The narrator is torn asunder between her own personal feelings, which are indeed healthy and positive, and the patriarchal society's view of what is proper and decent behaviour for women. Since she has internalized society's expectations of women, this conflict is felt as a schizoid within herself” (Quawas, 44). This supporting evidence helps give bigger insight of a deeper meaning to the correlation of insanity and symbols in the actual…show more content…
The yellow wallpaper being the most significant and obvious symbol which underlie societies attempts regarding women in the late 19th century, gives the reader an eye opening view to the repression women were under and still are in todays society. The main character writing in her notebook symbolizes a sense of stability in an oppressed life. Lastly, the isolated room, gave sense of symbolizing a safe haven for the narrator or even imprisonment. The symbols exposed in "The Yellow Wallpaper" give the short story a stronger essential meaning and a sense that the narrator was not entirely insane, however a women who found her individuality in something as horrid as the yellow wallpaper. In short, the yellow wallpaper mirrors the makeover of a woman’s identity which is triggered by a corrupt social structure that stops woman from being their true
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