Charlotte Perkins Gilman is known as the first American writer who has feminist approach. Gilman criticises inequality between male and female during her life, hence it is mostly possible to see the traces of feminist approach in her works. She deals with the struggles and obstacles which women face in patriarchal society. Moreover, Gilman argues that marriages cause the subordination of women, because male is active, whereas female plays a domestic role in the marriage. Gilman also argues that the situation should change; therefore women are only able to accomplish full development of their identities. At this point, The Yellow Wallpaper is a crucial example that shows repressed woman’s awakening. It is a story of a woman who
A Feminist Reading of Gilman’s “The Yellow Wallpaper” by Sandra M. Gilbert and Susan Gubar dives headfirst into The Yellow Wallpaper and presents their interpretation of the short story. The three main points that this article covers are the symbolism of the room the narrator was confined to, the degradation of the narrator’s mental state, and the real world impact that this story had. While I agree for the most part with these authors, I have my own personal interpretation of the story.
“The Yellow Wallpaper” is a short story about a woman who has a mental illness but cannot heal due to her husband’s lack of belief. The story appears to take place during a time period where women were oppressed. Women were treated as second rate people in society during this time period. Charlotte Perkins Gilman very accurately portrays the thought process of the society during the time period in which “The Yellow Wallpaper” is written. Using the aspects of Feminist criticism, one can analyze “The Yellow Wallpaper” by Charlotte Perkins Gilman through the dialogue through both the male and female perspective, and through the symbol found in the story.
Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s, “The Yellow Wallpaper,” tells the story of a woman suffering from post-partum depression, undergoing the sexist psychological treatments of mental health, that took place during the late nineteenth century. The narrator in Gilman’s story writes about being forced to do nothing, and how that she feels that is the worst possible treatment for her. In this particular scene, the narrator writes that she thinks normal work would do her some good, and that writing allows her to vent, and get across her ideas that no one seems to listen to. Gilman’s use of the rhetorical appeal pathos, first-person point of view, and forceful tone convey her message that confinement is not a good cure for mental health, and that writing,
Charlotte Perkins Gilman uses her short story “The Yellow Wall-Paper” to show how women undergo oppression by gender roles. Gilman does so by taking the reader through the terrors of one woman’s changes in mental state. The narrator in this story becomes so oppressed by her husband that she actually goes insane. The act of oppression is very obvious within the story “The Yellow Wall-Paper” and shows how it changes one’s life forever.
Did you know that discrimination can take many forms from race, gender, religion and sexuality and that “40% of Canadian workers experience bullying on a weekly basis” (Canadian Bullying Statistics)? One of the biggest example of discrimination is female oppression. Even today, women are perceived and shaped generally as fragile and caring. During the 1900’s, and many years before, women were oppressed; some were even hospitalized for wanting to expand their knowledge. The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Gilman, and the author herself, are great examples regarding the oppression of women by a patriarchal power structure during the 1900’s. Throughout the story, Gilman exemplifies the social struggle against male domination that woman faced through her personal experience, the characters in her story and the wallpaper as a symbol of the male authority.
In The Yellow Wallpaper, Charlotte Perkins Gilman discusses the oppression men have towards women through the story of a nameless narrator during the 19th century. In the story, the unknown narrator, a woman, is telling her struggle for freedom and her fight to escape from the subordination in her marriage with a physician. In the story, the narrator suffers an illness that prevents her from doing things she likes such as writing. Throughout her illness, the narrator slowly becomes aware of her situation and then starts to fight to change her living condition with her husband. Through the use of two major symbols established throughout the text, Gilman brings awareness of women’s struggle to end their oppression by men and their fight to change the way society is dominated by men. In addition, the symbols used by Gilman underline the way women suffrage awareness slowly began to spread during the 19th century.
Women’s Rights has been a point of contention for a very long time. Especially during the late 19th and 20th century, it was a seemingly unorthodox idea in a patriarchal society. This is what makes Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s The Yellow Wallpaper a feminist piece still analyzed to this day. It was a story that was arguably ahead of its time, as was Gilman, with her utopian feminist ideals. She wrote the book with some introspection of her own postpartum depression. The Yellow Wallpaper has been deemed a classic feminist literature piece due to its layers of deeper meaning, achieved through Gilman’s use of symbolism, character, and setting, construed by many to represent the struggles faced by women in the late 19th century.
Despite living in a confined room, the narrator of Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s “The Yellow Wallpaper” finds a way to break free, become an entirely new person, and explore the evils and unfairness holding her back in society. This demonstrates that those who are oppressed can overcome their oppressors but cannot belong in the same structure after realizing the negative impact on not only themselves, but also on society as a whole. The narrator is forced to suppress her true feelings until she violently overcomes her unjust treatment and cannot return to the compromised structure. Her treatment is directly affiliated with her femininity and she chooses to abandon all aspects of her gender, gender roles, and expectations to lose her past self and reject the patriarchal influences on society.
The structure of the text, particularly evident in the author’s interactions with her husband, reveals the binary opposition between the façade of a middle-class woman living under the societal parameters of the Cult of Domesticity and the underlying suffering and dehumanization intrinsic to marriage and womanhood during the nineteenth century. While readers recognize the story for its troubling description of the way in which the yellow wallpaper morphs into a representation of the narrator’s insanity, the most interesting and telling component of the story lies apart from the wallpaper. “The Yellow Wallpaper” outwardly tells the story of a woman struggling with post-partum depression, but Charlotte Perkins Gilman snakes expressions of the true inequality faced within the daily lives of nineteenth century women throughout the story. Although the climax certainly surrounds the narrator’s overpowering obsession with the yellow wallpaper that covers the room to which her husband banished her for the summer, the moments that do not specifically concern the wallpaper or the narrator’s mania divulge a deeper and more powerful understanding of the torturous meaning of womanhood.
“The Yellow Wallpaper,” by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, depicts a young woman’s gradual descent into insanity due to her entrapment, both mentally and physically, in the restrictive cult of domesticity. Through the narrator’s creeping spiral into madness, Gilman seeks to shed light upon the torturous and constraining societal conditions in which women are expected to live, that permeates throughout all aspects of their lives. At first glance to an average reader unfamiliar with Gilman’s history, “The Yellow Wallpaper” seems to just provide a tale about the oppressive relationship between the man and the woman in a domestic environment, however, once Gilman’s own personal life is uncovered, the story takes on a new level of depth.
“The Yellow Wallpaper” is known as a feminist story with obvious slanders of a desperate need for change in society. Gilman getting “The Yellow Wallpaper” published was a big step forward in the feminist movement as well as for the health and well-being of women everywhere. Even today, Gilman’s
In the 19th century, the female gender faced limited opportunity and the widespread belief of inferiority to the male gender. Women were viewed as being frail, weak, and in constant need of a man to help her do even the most basic tasks. This resulted in devastating effects on the female psyche, including debasement of character and even catastrophic mental illness. Literature written by the women of the aforementioned time period conveys the isolation, humiliation, and agony experienced by the females of that time. The short story, “The Yellow Wallpaper”, by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, serves as an excellent example of such a piece of literature. Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s short story “The Yellow Wallpaper” illustrates subordinate standing of the female role in the 19th century and how such social conditions can have a devastating effects impact on the human mind. (Wilson)
The Yellow Wallpaper is a feminist piece of literature that analyzed women’s struggle in the 1900s, such as medical diagnosis and women’s roles. Over the years, women struggled to attain independence and freedom. In order to achieve these liberties, they were females who paved the way and spoke out about these issues to secure equal rights for women. In addition, these powerful females used their vulnerability to challenge the male domination through their literary work. The Yellow Wallpaper is a direct reflection of Charlotte Perkins Gilman and her political view on women’s health, both mental and physical.
“In 1973, a new publishing house with the brave name of The Feminist Press reprinted in a slim volume Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s “The Yellow Wallpaper”, first published in 1892 and out of print for half a century. This is a story about an unnamed female narrator and her slide into psychosis due to her feelings of oppression. The narrator, a writer by nature, is ordered by her husband to leave off all activity including congenial work. He has diagnosed her with a temporary nervous depression with slight hysterical tendencies and forbidden her to leave her attic nursery bedroom but for short periods of time. Forbidden to write, the narrator becomes obsessed with the room’s wallpaper, which at first she finds both repelling and intriguing, on its chaotic surface she eventually deciphers an imprisoned woman whom she attempts to liberate by crawling around and peeling the paper off the wall. This is a brilliant tale about a white, middle class woman driven mad by a patriarchy that she felt was