"Managing Madness in Gilman's 'The Yellow Wall-Paper.'." Nineteenth-Century Literature Criticism, edited by Kathy D. Darrow, vol. 228, Gale, 2010. Literature Resource Center, Accessed 1 June 2017. Originally published in Studies in American Fiction, vol.
The story somewhat resembles Gilman’s shocking personal biography, namely the rest cure she underwent under the watchful eye of Dr. Silas Weir Mitchell in 1887, two years after the birth of her daughter, Katherine. Superficially, the rest cure the narrator in "The Yellow Wallpaper" endures loosely replicates Gilman’s personal anguish as she underwent such a treatment. More complexly, however, the story both accentuates and indirectly criticizes the oppression women faced in both marriage and motherhood. Within the story itself, the progression ... ... middle of paper ... ...nth century and remains as reminder of the progression women experienced since that time. Works Cited Sandra M. Gilbert and Susan Gubar, The Madwoman in the Attic: The Woman Writer and the Nineteenth-Century Literary Imagination (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1979) Gilman, Charlotte Perkins, Thomas L. Erskine, and Connie L. Richards.
Understanding brain injury: A guide for the family. Retrieved August 20, 2011 from http://mayoresearch.mayo.edu/mayo/research/tbims/upload/ubi_families.pdf NIMH, (1998). Mental Health: A report from the Surgeon General. Retrieved August 24, 2011 from http://www.surgeongeneral.gov/library/mentalhealth/chapter2/sec3.html Pourbabaee, K., (n.d.). Brain chemistry/function & female depression.
Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s work, “The Yellow Wallpaper” is a story that the author wrote to depict her own struggle with mental illness. In order to really appreciate this story, it may help to know about the author’s life. Born in 1860, she was the only child of Mary Finch Westcott and Frederick Beecher Perkins, a librarian and writer. It is said that Charlotte’s father abandoned his family, and, on the verge of poverty, they were forced to move around frequently (Merriman). At the age of 24, Charlotte married her first husband, Charles Watson Stetson, with whom she bore a daughter, Katharine Beecher Stetson.
She eventually returned to the East coast and married George Houghton Gilman, her first cousin, after she divorced her first husband. According to Gilman, she was the happiest she had ever been while married to George. In 1935, Charlotte committed suicide after being diagnosed with inoperable breast cancer. Many feminist and psychoanalytical articles, books, and journals have been written about Charlotte Perkins Gilman and The Yellow Wallpaper. Most critics blame the patriarchy of the late nineteenth century as the cause of the narrator’s mental state.
Charlotte Perkins Gilman was born in Hartford, Connecticut on July 3, 1860. From the day of her birth, she was a woman ahead of her time. In 1890, she wrote The Yellow Wallpaper a story about a woman who was oppressed by her husband and her illness. This, Gilman’s most famous work, was written from her own experience in life. In 1884, Charlotte Perkins married Charles Walter Stetson and had one daughter.
“I never saw so much expression in an inanimate object before.” (The Yellow Wallpaper) In order to understand Charlotte Gilman’s stories one must first know about the life she lead. In 1884 Charlotte married her husband Charles Walter Stetson and began to sink into depression. During this time Gilman wrote her famous story The Yellow Wallpaper (Radcliffe). Within the story the reader can pick out parts of Gilman’s own life woven into it. Gilman, like the main character Jane had postpartum depression as a result of this she divorced Stetson and sent their daughter to live with him and his second wife.
One critic who agrees with these claims is Emily Toth, whom of which wrote an essay that was included in Kate Chopin Reconsidered: Beyond the Bayou. Toth states that half a dozen of Chopin’s main characters are suddenly widowed, and she wrote about these deaths as if it were cheerful for these characters to lose their husbands. Much like when Chopin lost her own husband. Chopin wrote in her diary that her husband’s death and the death of her mother is included in this, gave way for ‘real growth’ in her life and work. Toth also wrote in her essay that The Story of an Hour is the story of Kate Chopin’s mother Eliza, though changed.
Since its original publication in The New England Magazine in May 1892 and its subsequent resurrection by modern feminists in the l970's, Charlotte Perkins Gilman's novella, "The Yellow Wallpaper" has gone through varied interpretations. When it was originally written, "The Yellow Wallpaper" was considered a tale of horror, so horrible in fact, that one editor, Horace Scudder of the Atlantic Monthly, refused the work because he did not want to make others as miserable as he was when he read it. Even as late as 1971, Gilman's work was anthologized under the category of horror (Kennard 75). It was not until the work was rediscovered and republished in 1973 that modern feminist critics recognized the female hero as a victim of society (Kennard 75). However, "The Yellow Wallpaper" is more than a story with a fictional character; it is the story of its creator.