the yellow wallpaper disscuss mental illness

Decent Essays

Charlotte Perkins Gilman 's "The Yellow Wallpaper," relays to the reader something more than a simple story of a woman at the mercy of the limited medical knowledge in the late 1800 's. Gilman creates a character that expresses real emotions and a psyche that can be examined in the context of modern understanding. "The Yellow Wallpaper," written in first person and first published in 1892 in the January edition of the New England Magazine, depicts the downward spiral of depression, loss of control and competence, and feelings of worthlessness that lead to greater depression and the possibility of schizophrenia.

The beginning emphasis will be on the interaction and roles of the
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John could have obtained council from someone less personally involved in her case, but the only help he sought was for the condition of the house and the baby. He obtained a nanny to watch over the children while he was away at work each day: "It is fortunate Mary is so good with the baby." He also had his sister Jennie take care of the house. "She is a perfect and enthusiastic housekeeper." There is one instance, however, when he does talk of taking her to an expert for assistance, "John says if I don 't pick up faster he shall send me to Weir Mitchell in the fall." Nevertheless she took that as a threat since Dr. Mitchell was even more domineering than her husband and his brother. Perhaps, if she had been allowed to come and go and do as she pleased her depression might have lifted, "I think sometimes that if I were only well enough to write a little it would relieve the press of ideas and rest me." It seems to her that just being able to tell someone how she really feels would have eased her depression, but her husband would not hear of it because of the embarrassing consequences it could bring to the family name. Thus, John has made her a prisoner in their marriage where her opinions are pushed aside, and her self-worthiness questioned.

She does have a rebellious spirit in her and the fact that this spirit is being crushed is the final nail towards her insanity. Her desperation is almost like someone being buried alive and screaming knowing that there are people
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