"The Yellow Wallpaper"

Decent Essays
"The Yellow Wallpaper"

Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper" first appeared in 1892 and became a notary piece of literature for it' s historical and influential context. Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper" was a first hand account of the oppression faced toward females and the mentally ill,whom were both shunned in society in the late 1890's. It is the story of an unnamed woman confined by her doctor-husband to an attic nursery with barred windows and a bolted down bed. Forbidden to write, the narrator-protagonist becomes obsessed with the room's wallpaper, which she finds first hideous and then fascinating; on it she eventually deciphers an imprisoned woman whom she attempts to liberate by peeling the paper off the wall. The
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The room that confines Gilman's narrator,is "a cruel, ingenious cage." It is in this room that the wallpaper reduces an artistic and articulate woman to an animal, stripped entirely of her sanity and humanity. Through Gilman's symbolism, the reader can interpret that the paper symbolizes her current situation that she faces with society and her husband. Both restrain and monitor much like the wallpaper and lead the narrator to subsequent mental demise. By placing her in this room, John, the narrator's husband, becomes the main antagonist and a direct reason why she ends up she way she does. He makes gestures at restraining her by locking up the surrounding of the house and speaks to her demeaning as "dear" or " little goose" (1152). The influence her husband has on the narrator is dominant as he hardly lets her " stir without special direction" and in turn makes her "very tired" (1151).

After these actions she starts to imagine the wallpaper as having eyes that are watching her unceasingly and a woman that surfaces at night. It was the under the scrutiny of the "two bulbous eyes" in the yellow wallpaper, the narrator passes through stages from concern to paranoia and, finally, to madness. Despite committing for her "every artistic sin," the paper does not begin disrupt the narrator's psychological balance until the repression by
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