The Yellow Wallpaper By Charlotte Perkins Gilman

The Yellow Wallpaper By Charlotte Perkins Gilman

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The Yellow Wallpaper is a very unique and odd story. In the first read through of the story, the reader is aware that the narrator is sick and losing her mind. Over the course of the story it becomes apparent that the treatment used to heal the narrator isn’t effective. As she begins to completely lose her mind the reader gets a glimpse into her mind. She believes that she is trapped inside of the wallpaper, and by ripping it off the wall she can escape. There are several topics that seem to occur in this story. These topics include Feminism, the role of women in the 1880’s period, and knowledge and understanding of mentally ill. Although these are some of the main points in the story, The Yellow Wallpaper has several topics that are direct and indirect, that contributes to creating the story.
Charlotte Perkins Gilman had many beliefs and merged these into her story. Gilman said in “Why I Wrote ‘The Yellow Wallpaper’” that she written the story because she knew about nervous breakdowns, because she had one. She visited a doctor of high standing and he placed her on a rest cure. After several months of being on the cure, Gilman decided that she was going mad. With the help of a friend, Gilman recovered and to rejoice she wrote her story. She then sent a copy of the story to her physician and later learned he developed a new method (448). After reading how the author developed her story, it made more sense because it was a life experience that she had gone through and related to.
Some of the different topics that Gilman includes in her story are broken down by critics. These critics pick apart the story and view other works by Gilman to compare and contrast the differences in her works. In the first critical review, “Gender and Pa...


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...d or comprehend the positive effect that work can have on her (591). In Conrad’s critique he explains to the reader how John doesn’t understand what she is going through. Many readers see John as a protagonist because he is driving his wife insane. However, John is only trying to help and doesn’t realize that his method of treatment is actually making matters worse.
Reading what the critics wrote helps the reader identify and understand the reason the author decided to write her story. It increases understanding in the story because it digs deeper and explains more. Without a critical analysis, the reader may not realize some of the stronger points that the author had intended. Critics bring important topics to the reader’s mind and allow the readers to think about how the author feels. Without Critics, important details may be left out and this could ruin the story.

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