A Bad Case of Inferiority Essay

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Although a reader cannot assume the narrator is also the author, in some instances the resemblance is uncanny. Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s short story “The Yellow Wallpaper”, drew on her own experience of undergoing the infamous Rest Cure of Doctor Silas Weir Mitchell to write her story. According to Gilman, “[The story] was not intended to drive people crazy, but to save people from being driven crazy, and it worked” (The Forerunner). Through her platform of writing Gilman successfully illustrated the inferiority women suffered. The Rest Cure led people to believe that women should “live as domestic a life as far as possible” and only be allowed to “have but two hours' intellectual life a day,” (The Forerunner). These restrictions…show more content…
According to the Rest Cure women were “never to touch pen, brush, or pencil again” thus emulating male dominance over female freedom in the form of artistic expression (The Forerunner). Within the story the narrator uses writing as an escape; however, she keeps it completely hidden from her husband. An example of the narrator’s submission to her husband’s commands would be as followed: “There come John, and I must put this away-her hates to have me write a word,” (Gilman 627). By neglecting her own self wants the narrator gives into the will of her husband. This action of compliance shows the power that men can have and how they sometimes exercise that power to make women feel inferior. The nursery, exemplifies the theme of inferiority, serves as the main setting for the story. The irony is that the “ill” person needs to be taken care of and resides in the nursery; thus, the husband is treating the narrator like a child. Through diction the reader can clearly see how the narrator is made to feel inferior. An example of inferiority would be when John calls the narrator “little girl” after she is caught walking around the house alone (Gilman 632). The phrase is most associated with little children not with grown women. By calling his wife a childish name he treats her with even less respect much like a
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