In Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s short story, “The Yellow Wallpaper”, a woman suffering from postpartum depression is prescribed a “rest cure”. She is forced to stay in a room with yellow wallpaper which She says is “committing every artistic sin” (Gilman 419). The woman convinces herself that there is a woman trapped in the yellow wallpaper, and it is her job to free and catch her. She begins to mix reality with fantasy and she unknowingly becomes suicidal and drives herself mad. Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s “The Yellow Wallpaper” uses dialogue, narration, and symbolism to show that women are not taken seriously when it comes to mental health.
Condemnation of a Patriarchal Society in The Yellow Wallpaper Charlotte Perkins Gilman was crafty. Taken at face value, her short work, The Yellow Wallpaper, is simply the diary of a woman going through a mental breakdown. The wallpaper itself is the arbitrary object on which a troubled mind is obsessively fixated. The fact that Gilman herself suffered from a nervous breakdown makes this interpretation seem quite viable. This explanation is, however, dead wrong.
Isolation and depression stem closely from the same root. Charlotte Perkins Gilman took feminist literature and theory into a new perspective, focusing on a route that depicts situations women were usually in, but seldom spoken of. The story The Yellow Wallpaper shines new light upon a woman’s opinion, something that was generally neglected. At nearly impossible lengths a woman in her time of need after a sudden miscarriage is left alone to her own wits in a bedroom adorned with a color that would soon become a key factor to her psychosis. Throughout this equinox of solitude, her reality starts to detach from the normal.
But now imagine reading a story about one of those women who is slowly losing her sanity, only to realize at the end of the story that it is written by the crazy woman herself. The reader travels the journey through her perspective alone and is able to feel the raw emotions, such as horror and terror. One way to define horror and terror
The focus of her surroundings is narrowed to the point that she exists only in the bedroom, fearing the outdoors and limiting her contact with other people. The wallpaper provides the foundation for her fantasy world and represents breaking away from the confinement of her prescribed treatment and the loss of her sanity. The narrator is unable to fulfill her intellectual needs, whether it is by writing, interacting with friends and family, or experiencing changes in her prescribed daily routine. The wallpaper develops details and animation as the story progresses and symbolizes the confinement, struggle and acceptance of one woman's struggle with debilitating depression. Bibliography: Works Cited Gilman, Charlotte Perkins.
This “cure” eventually leads to the decrease of her mental stability as she becomes more and more obsessed with the wallpaper. In order to convey a story with so many themes lots of literary devices were used. In “The Yellow Wallpaper,” Charlotte Perkins Gilman uses symbolism and characterization to explore themes about the lack of understanding of women and their mental health. The narrator of the story, though unnamed, represents a stereotypical woman with mental illnesses in that day and age. “Many details, like the lack of a name, argue against her individuality,” (Ford 1).
Rather, she is expected to passively accept the fact that her own ideas are mere fancy, and only the opinions of the men in her life can be trusted. She is expected to take their own uninformed opinions on her mental state over her own. While "Wallpaper" presents a powerful argument in favor of the feminist movement, the true issue behind the conflict is even more fundamental: the resiliency of human will in the face of social negation. Obviously, it is impossible to maintain a healthy mental state in the oppressive environment surrounding the woman. Throughout the story, the author traces the woman's mental deterioration from a having a normal but weakened sense of self, to a complete inversion of her ego.
She continues to say "the windows are barred" (Gilman 834) to describe the prison like quality of her surroundings showing the confinement of both her physical and... ... middle of paper ... .... At this point he is also forced to listen to her for the first time. This ending is also ironic because it serves as a reversal of the roles of male and female. The woman steps into power while the man faints in response to the reality of his wife's madness. Through "The Yellow Wallpaper," Charlotte Perkins Gilman comments on the roles of husband and wife and the inequality that exists within their relationship. In the depiction of her protagonist's mental collapse she shows the problems with psychological diagnoses and the lack of power women had in their own treatment.
The result from her moving away from the community’s views on women, labeled her as a mental patient, who supposedly hallucinates frequently. “The Yellow Wallpaper” is a story made to portray women’s oppression during the late 1800s or early 1900s. Charlotte Perkins Gilman uses metaphors and other techniques to enhance the expression of women’s hardships. Throughout the short story, Gilman delivers occurrences of a neutral standpoint of suppression, a realization, the understanding, and then the acceptance of the main issue. Through the selection of characters, setting, and point of view, “The Yellow Wallpaper” expresses the women’s
A Woman 's Struggle and Ambition In the Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, there is a lot of symbolism in the story. I chose to find the meaning behind the color yellow, the wallpaper, and creeping. "The color is repellent, almost revolting; a smoldering unclean yellow, strangely faded by the slow-turning sunlight (239). "A dull yellow represents caution, sickness, and jealously. "The color is hideous enough, and unreliable enough, and infuriating enough, but the pattern is torturing (244)."