Feminist Analysis of Yellow Wallpaper

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A Woman Trapped: A Feminist Analysis of the Yellow Wallpaper

The short story, the Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman can be analyzed in depth by both the psycho-analytic theory and the feminist theory. On one hand the reader witnesses the mind of a woman who travels the road from sanity to insanity to suicide “caused” by the wallpaper she grows to despise in her bedroom. On the other hand, the reader gets a vivid picture of a woman’s place in 1911 and how she was treated when dealing what we now term as post-partum depression. The woman I met in this story was constantly watched and controlled by her husband to such an extreme that she eventually becomes pychootic and plots to make her escape.

From the very start of
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She took these tonics and such because she was told to, even when she didn’t believe they would help her condition. “Personally, I disagree with their ideas. Personally, I believe that congenial work, with the excitement of a change, would do me good.” Her work was writing, the only thing she found relief in doing. This relief was denied because her husband had forbidden that she writes.

The narrator describes the entire mansion from the hedges to the gates, to the garden as “the most beautiful place ever”. All of it is beautiful except for the bedroom in which she is kept in, but again the room selection was not her choice. “I don’t like our room a bit. I wanted one downstairs that opened on the piazza and had roses all over the window, and such pretty old-fashioned chintz hangings! But John would not hear of it.” The room had previously been a child’s nursery, and had bars on the window. Though she recently had a child, her newborn did not occupy this nursery. The baby was looked after by Johns’ sister, something he had also arranged, and the narrator had very little contact with her child. As the story progresses, the narrator begins to fill more and more trapped by the room and completely obsessed with the “repellent, almost revolting” yellow wallpaper that surrounds her. In many of her secret
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