Preview
Preview

The Subjugation of Women in The Yellow Wallpaper

:: 5 Works Cited
Length: 2534 words (7.2 double-spaced pages)
Rating: Blue      
Open Document
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

The Subjugation of Women in The Yellow Wall Paper              

 
In the nineteenth century, women in literature were often portrayed as submissive to men. Literature of the period often characterized women as oppressed by society, as well as by the male influences in their lives. The Yellow Wallpaper presents the tragic story of a woman's descent into depression and madness. Gilman once wrote "Women's subordination will only end when women lead the struggle for their own autonomy, thereby freeing man as well as themselves, because man suffers from the distortions that come from dominance, just as women are scarred by the subjugation imposed upon them" (Lane 5). The Yellow Wallpaper brilliantly illustrates this philosophy. The narrator's declining mental health is reflected through the characteristics of the house she is trapped in and her husband, while trying to protect her, is actually destroying her.

The narrator of the story goes with her doctor/husband to stay in a colonial mansion for the summer. The house is supposed to be a place where she can recover from severe postpartum depression. She loves her baby, but knows she is not able to take care of him. "It is fortunate Mary is so good with the baby. Such a dear baby! And yet I cannot be with him, it makes me so nervous" (Gilman 642). The symbolism utilized by Gilman is somewhat askew from the conventional. A house usually symbolizes security. In this story the opposite is true. The protagonist, whose name we never learn, feels trapped by the walls of the house, just as she is trapped by her mental illness. The windows of her room, which normally would symbolize a sense of freedom, are barred, holding her in. (Biedermann 179, 382). From the outset the reader is ...


... middle of paper ...


...f the wallpaper . . . "(Gilman 647). 

 

Bibliography

Anderson, Daniel. *http://cwrl.utexas.edu/~daniel/amlit/wallpaper/whywrote/htm* Why I Wrote "The Yellow Wallpaper"? As it appeared in the October issue of The Forerunner, 1913." 1996. (19 Sept. 1998)

Biedermann, Hans, ed. The Wordsworth Dictionary of Symbolism. Cumberland House: Hertfordshire, 1996

Cunningham, Iain and Holmes, Douglass. "Sensory Descriptions in The Yellow Wallpaper." 1977.

http://englishwww.ucla.edu/individuals/mcgraw/wallpaper/senses.htm* (19 Sept. 1998).

Gilman, Charlotte Perkins. "The Yellow Wallpaper." Women's Work - An Anthology of American Literature. Ed. Barbara Perkins, Robyn Warhol, and George Perkins. New York: McGraw-Hill, Inc., 1994. 640-650.

Lane, Ann J. To Herland and Beyond: The Life and Work of Charlotte Perkins Gilman. New York: Pantheon Books, 1990.


Click the button above to view the complete essay, speech, term paper, or research paper








This essay is 100% guaranteed.


Title Length Color Rating  
Social Repression in The Yellow Wallpaper - Social Repression in The Yellow Wallpaper   “The Yellow Wallpaper” is a symbolic tale of one woman’s struggle to break free from her mental prison.  Charlotte Perkins Gilman shows the reader how quickly insanity takes hold when a person is taken out of context and completely isolated from the rest of the world.  The narrator is a depressed woman who cannot handle being alone and retreats into her own delusions as opposed to accepting her reality.  This mental prison is a symbol for the actual repression of women’s rights in society and we see the consequences when a woman tries to free herself from this social slavery.                The story unfolds as the nameless narrator’s condi...   [tags: Yellow Wallpaper essays]
:: 4 Works Cited
1269 words
(3.6 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Free Yellow Wallpaper Essays: Women's Subordination - Women's Subordination in The Yellow Wallpaper         "The Yellow Wallpaper," written in 1892 by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, is a chilling study of insanity. It is a bitter story of a young woman driven to insanity by a "loving" husband-doctor, who imposes Mitchell's "rest cure."1 This short story vividly reflects a woman in torment. This story starts out with a hysterical woman who is overprotected by her "loving" husband John. She is taken to a summer home to recover from a nervous condition....   [tags: Yellow Wallpaper essays]
:: 2 Works Cited
905 words
(2.6 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Imprisoned by Society in The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman - The Yellow Wallpaper: Imprisoned by Society Charlotte Perkins Gilman's, "The Yellow Wallpaper" is the story of a woman's descent into madness as the result of being isolated as a form of "treatment" when suffering from postpartum depression. On a larger scale, Gilman is also telling the story of how women were kept prisoners by the confines of the society of her time and the penalties these women incurred when they attempted to break free from these confines. In the beginning of the story, the narrator, whose name is never divulged, has been brought to an isolated country estate in order to recuperate from "a slight hysterical tendency" by her husband, John, who is also a physician...   [tags: The Yellow Wallpaper Essays] 1079 words
(3.1 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Wife Subordination Depicted in Gilman's The Yellow Wallpaper - The Yellow Wallpaper The story of “The Yellow Wallpaper” is written by Charlotte Perkins Gilman. It is a story that reflects the subordination of woman in marriage. By the time of the early nineteenth century, it was very difficult for women to express their desire because the men always dominated them. The narrator in “The Yellow Wallpaper”, who suffers from her depression, is always under her husband’s control. She can’t do what she expects, even in her writing. Although her husband seems to love her, he doesn’t understand what she needs inside her heart....   [tags: eglish literature, literary analysis] 629 words
(1.8 pages)
Good Essays [preview]
Charlotte Perkins Gilmore, Author or Yellow Wallpaper, Show No Matter Our Differences, Everyone Deserves Equality - ... Surrounding these people with the idea that they are incapable of certain tasks will allow them to behave exactly as society perceives them: non -functioning. It is more beneficial to encourage someone to strive for success, rather than put them down and convince them that they are worthless. Similarly, The Story of an Hour, written by Kate Chopin reflects on her life by exploring sexism and oppression in marriage. When the main character obtains news that her husband tragically passes away, she finds comfort in knowing that she is now free from the subjugation of marriage and does not have a dominant male figure in her life....   [tags: stereotyptes, disabilities, women]
:: 1 Works Cited
640 words
(1.8 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman - The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman In Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s “The Yellow Wallpaper”, we see a shivering study of derangement. It is a grievous story narrated by a young woman driven to insanity by a husband that imposes a rest/cure for her sickness, although he believes that it is only “temporary nervous depression...” (118). This short story graphically reflects her torment and her husbands control over her. The woman has a mental breakdown, yet John, her husband, continuously tells her that she is fine....   [tags: Papers] 454 words
(1.3 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
The Oppression of Women and The Yellow Wallpaper - The Oppression of Women and The Yellow Wallpaper        The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman is a fictionalized autobiographical account that illustrates the emotional and intellectual deterioration of the female narrator who is also a wife and mother. The woman, who seemingly is suffering from post-partum depression, searches for some sort of peace in her male dominated world. She is given a “rest cure” from her husband/neurologist doctor that requires strict bed rest and an imposed reprieve form any mental stimulation....   [tags: Yellow Wallpaper essays]
:: 6 Works Cited
1520 words
(4.3 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Women and Fiction in The Yellow Wallpaper - Women and Fiction in The Yellow Wallpaper      Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper" is a deceptively simple story.  It is easy to follow the thirteen pages of narrative and conclude the protagonist as insane.  This is a fair judgement, after all no healthy minded individual becomes so caught up with "hideous" and "infuriating" wallpaper to lose sleep over it, much less lock herself in a room to tear the wallpaper down.  To be able to imagine such things as "broken necks" and "bulbous eyes" in the wallpaper is understandable, irrational and erratic designs can form rational patterns in our minds, but to see a woman locked inside of the "bars" of the wallpaper and attempt to re...   [tags: Yellow Wallpaper essays]
:: 1 Works Cited
1322 words
(3.8 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Suppression of Women in The Yellow Wallpaper - Suppression of Women in The Yellow Wallpaper "The Yellow Wallpaper," by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, tells the story of a woman's descent into madness as a result of the "rest and ignore the problem cure" that is frequently prescribed to cure hysteria and nervous conditions in women. More importantly, the story is about control and attacks the role of women in society. The narrator of the story is symbolic for all women in the late 1800s, a prisoner of a confining society. Women are expected to bear children, keep house and do only as they are told....   [tags: Yellow Wallpaper essays] 1807 words
(5.2 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Imprisonment of Women Exposed in The Yellow Wallpaper - Imprisonment of Women Exposed in The Yellow Wallpaper When asked the question of why she chose to write 'The Yellow Wallpaper', Charlotte Perkins Gilman claimed that experiences in her own life dealing with a nervous condition, then termed 'melancholia', had prompted her to write the short story as a means to try and save other people from a similar fate. Although she may have suffered from a similar condition to the narrator of her illuminating short story, Gilman's story cannot be coined merely a tale of insanity....   [tags: Yellow Wallpaper essays]
:: 2 Works Cited
1433 words
(4.1 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]