The narrator has zero control in the smallest details of her life and is consequently forced to retreat into her fantasies... ... middle of paper ... ...at the narrator will possibly be physically restrained or imprisoned at some point when her husband regains consciousness. At that point, he will have no other choice but to send her back to her doctor or a mental institution. Nevertheless, the narrator’s mind will always remain free, emulating the freedom relished by the woman in the wallpaper. Unfortunately, this escape of reality means that the speaker will never reclaim any sort of rationality. With the deed of freeing the woman in the wallpaper, the narrator unintentionally guarantees the long lasting burden of insanity.
The Yellow Wallpaper Although on the surface The Yellow Wallpaper, by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, is a story about one woman’s struggles with sanity it is not. In truth, it is a story about the dominant/submissive relationship between an oppressive husband and his submissive wife. The husband, John, pushes his wife’s depression to a point quite close to insanity. The narrator seems to destroy herself through her overactive imagination and her urge to write. When they arrive she seems well in control of her faculties, but by the time they are readying for departure, she has broken down.
The author uses elements of character development, symbolism and theme to portray this perilous struggle for self-fulfillment that inspires readers on many levels. Stetson’s character in The Yellow Wallpaper comes to want more of what her character potentially is. She did not feel self-fulfilled in her domestic role of wife and mother. This contrasted to her sister-in-law Jennie, who is described as a “perfect and enthusiastic housekeeper, and hopes for no better profession.” (p.650) While Stetson’s character happily gives up her domestic functions to Jennie, she is initially passive in her attempt to secure the satisfaction of self-fulfillment: “I did write for a while…. but it does exhaust me a good deal – having to be so sly about it, or else meet with heavy opposition.” (p. 648).
Susan B. Anthony, a woman’s rights pioneer, once said, “Oh, if I could but live another century and see the fruition of all the work for women! There is so much yet to be done” (“Women’s Voices Magazine”). Women’s rights is a hot button issue in the United States today, and it has been debated for years. In the late 1800’s an individual named Charlotte Perkins Gilman wrote literature to try and paint a picture in the audience’s mind that gender inferiority is both unjust and horrific. In her short story, “The Yellow Wallpaper” Gilman makes the ultimate argument that women should not be seen as subordinate to men, but as equal.
This offers an underlying theme that, as the story matures, can be seen more clearly. From the very beginning of “The Yellow Wallpaper” the reader is given a feeling of taboo with the secret diary which with the whole story is conveyed through. The narrator has been advised by her over bearing and arrogant husband to relieve herself of any intellectual stimulus as a remedy for an illness. She disagrees and thinks that “excitement and change” would be the perfect remedy (Gilman 1670). Her husband quickly sets her straight by explained that even the fact that she is pondering the idea is making her condition worse.
Due to many male-dominated marriages in the early 19th century, some attitudes toward women were viewed as weak second-class citizens who were deprived of self-expression and individualism. In the short story The Yellow Wall-paper, Charlotte Perkins Gilman unbinds the limited roles women had in their marriages. She reveals that these women were subjected to their husbands because they were seen as vulnerable and over emotional during this time. Gilman creates an unnamed female character that is diagnosed with hysteria by her husband and physician, John. He believes the best way to cure her case of hysteria is to stay contained in her room without stimulation of any kind, which could further worsen her condition.
Literary Elements -Symbols: -yellow wallpaper: to reflect the narrator is trap in the house and forbidden to do anything -the metal bars window: the narrator wants the freedom to do something that she likes to do, but she is trapped -Irony: John thinks when they move to a new place, and the narrator can get more rest and she can get well soon. The ironic is the narrator did not get well, oppositely, she become insane. Possible Themes or Purposes I think the possible theme is “The Important to Express Yourself”. In the story, the narrator is wanting to please her husband and do whatever he wants her to do. I am thinking if she can stand for herself and tell john what she wants to do instead of feeling trapped.
She is unable to openly share her thoughts and feeling with anyone. All choices are made for her; relinquished of all responsibilities. This imposed solitude leaves the narrator with absolutely nothing to occupy her time. She begins to manifest her imprisonment through hallucinations in the wallpaper she was forced to surround herself in. Eventually, the narrator believes she sees a woman trapped in the dreaded wallpaper.
At one point she was referred to as Mrs. Mallard, and now she is her own person, with an independent identity. Louise’s heart trouble which afflicts her is a symbolic malady that showed her dissatisfaction in her marriage and her unhappiness due to lack of freedom. The widow whispers "Free, free, free!" She realized that although at times she had loved her husband, she has her freedom, a state of being that all creatures strive for. She grows excited and begins to fantasize about li... ... middle of paper ... ...rts to feel she is a prisoner inside this paper.
As the reader delves into the narrative, a progression can be seen from the normality the narrator displays early in the passage, to the insanity she demonstrates near the conclusion. As the story begins, the narrator's compliance with her role as a submissive woman is easily seen. She states, "John laughs at me, but one expects that in marriage" (Gilman 577). These words clearly illustrate the male's position of power in a marriage t... ... middle of paper ... ..., Gilman acknowledges the fact that much work is needed to overcome the years of injustice. Through the concluding scenes where the narrator goes into her mental illness rebellion, Gilman encourages women to do what they can to stand up for themselves.