Why I Wrote The Yellow Wallpaper, By Charlotte Perkins Gilman

713 Words3 Pages
The essay, "Why I wrote the Yellow Wallpaper" by Charlotte Perkins Gilman was written primarily for the purpose of explaining the meaning and reasoning behind her semi-autobiographical short story, "The Yellow Wallpaper". Before stating these reasons, Gilman explains that she had been suffering from a "severe and continuous nervous breakdown tending to melancholia--and beyond" (Gilman, 1913). After three years of this torment, she decided to go see a specialist in nervous diseases. The doctor she went to was named Dr. S. Weir Mitchell. Dr. Mitchell advised Gilman to be put to bed and to apply the rest cure, along with living a domestic life with limited amount of intellectual interaction and to never "touch pen, brush, or pencil again" (Gilman, 1913). As intimidating as this sounded, Gilman took the advise of her doctor, and followed his every suggestion for about three months. She had reached a point of almost complete mental ruin at the end of these three months, that she had to cast aside the specialist's advice. Instead of following his instructions, she began to work again. Ultimately, this is when and where "The Yellow Wallpaper" was written. In this article, Gilman states multiple reasons as to why she wrote the short story; however, she is clear to point out that the main reason was to, "save people from being driven crazy" (Gilman, 1913). According to Gilman, it did exactly that. I believe that when women in a similar situation as she had been in read the
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