Yellow Wallpaper Feminism

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Throughout history women have been inferior to men. A woman in a patriarchal society had no opinion of value and was dependent upon man from birth to death both financially and emotionally. Both Emily Brontë's Wuthering Heights and Charlotte Perkins Gillman's "The Yellow Wallpaper" show the repression of women, women as a lesser entity, and further the defiance of societal norms as feministic characters.
For centuries men have assumed that because of menstruation and child birth women are the weaker sex. It was very common for women to suffer from "hysteria" during these times in their lives. "John is a physician, and perhaps (I would not say it to a living soul, of course, but this is dead paper and a great relief to my mind) perhaps that is one reason I do not get well faster. You see he does not believe I am sick! And what can one do?" (Gillman 2) Charlotte suffers from what can be assumed is post partum depression. As luck would have it, her husband is not only her husband but a physician, as is her brother. With good intentions, Charlotte's husband pays little to no attention to her opinion and feelings as he's already decided that she needed rest. John does not value her writings and minimizes her worries. Charlotte eventually deteriorates as a result of feeling repressed and trapped.
Charlotte will never be anything but a wife and mother with no room to become a writer. Dependent on her husband for emotional support as well as financial support, Charlotte did not outwardly disagree with John's diagnosis. Without much protest, Charlotte stays in one room for fear of being sent to Dr. Mitchell's for the Rest Cure. (4) Trapped in a room with no aesthetic pleasure, she was left to her own thoughts. Societal norms said th...

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...e revenge of thinking that your cruelty rises from your greater misery." (528) In defiance of Heathcliff, Cathy symbolically defies society in one sentence. Society's way of thinking has made Heathcliff miserable but it will not make Cathy miserable. Her life will go unscathed by these restrictions placed on the first generation. Cathy married Hareton for love and her social status was lowered because of this. Unlike her mother, Cathy broke through the constraints of society in order to be truly happy.
Victorian literature is a representation of society at the time. These Victorian authors have expressed their concerns with the dangers of the restrictions of society and the effect it has on women. Both “The Yellow Wallpaper and Wuthering Heights show the repression of women, the dependency on men, but also the resistance to a patriarchal society and its norms.
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