The Yellow Wallpaper Essay
English 113 3 March 2013 Ripping and Tearing the Course to Self-Realization The story, “The Yellow Wallpaper” analyzes the role of ladies in the nineteenth century American society, especially the relationships in between husbands and wives, and hence females’s reliance on their other halves. During the Victorian period, females were anticipated to act modestly and stay obedient to their spouse. The storyteller of the story is struggling with anxiety, most likely resulting from the birth of her son. Her hubby and bro, both physicians recommend that she get complete bed rest.
During the period of the story, a real doctor, Dam Mitchell, made this “rest treatment,” famous (Gilman 484). The “rest treatment” recommended females to refrain from composing or painting and recommended bed rest. Weir Mitchell believed that intellectual pursuits were damaging to females’s health (Gilman 484). The story narrates the life of a female required to send to the “rest treatment.” “The Yellow Wallpaper” is a story about a female, who in spite of being restricted and suppressed, triumphs over her oppression. In the end, she obtains a greater sense of self as she acts out her insanity.
The storyteller deals with many little beats at the hands of her partner that ultimately culminate in psychosis. When they initially reach your house, the storyteller requests the little bed room on the first floor, however John informs her they need to use the upstairs nursery with the yellow wallpaper. She faces another defeat when John declines to enable her to visit her cousins or have them visit her. John will not allow it, since he does not think she will have the ability to endure the journey or their company. Once she had actually resigned herself to the concept of living in the upstairs nursery, she asks to alter the wallpaper.
At first, John concurs, however after some believed dissents declining to succumb to her “fancies” about altering the wallpaper considering that following that, “it would be the heavy bedstead, and after that the disallowed windows, and then that gate at the head of the stairs, and so on (Gilman, 477).” John’s aversion to compromise with his partner shows his dominance over her. In such a paternalistic relationship, she will constantly suffer injustice and defeat. The ending of “The Yellow Wallpaper” by Charlotte Perkins Gilman is a triumph for the narrator as she gets away the injustice of her subservient arriage and former self. In the conclusion of the story, the storyteller informs her other half John that she has actually left, “in spite of you and Jane (Gilman 483).” Considering that the author never reveals the storyteller’s name in the story, numerous assume that Jane is the narrator (Delashmit and Longcope). She had to leave the confinement of the nursery, her marital relationship, and the function anticipated of females during this duration. In the end of the story, the narrator has actually rejected her former self and ends up being the woman in the wallpaper.
Lastly, she gets away the wallpaper, never to be quelched by her partner, herself or society once again. The storyteller attempts to rebel versus her partner several times throughout the story to conquer the defeat she is feeling. She composes in her journal in spite of knowing, “he dislikes to have me compose a word (Gilman 474).” She also rebels versus John by pretending to sleep. By rebelling in such methods, she is refusing to respond to his treatment. It seems that she is selecting to go mad instead of giving in and losing herself and her imagination.
As the narrator relates to the female in the wallpaper, she recognizes that the source of her own power remains in her active imagination. Many critics have called the wallpaper both representative of the oppressiveness of marriage and agent of flexibility from the injustice (Evans, Little, and Wiedemann 68). As the storytellers last act of disobedience, she rips and take apart the paper. She locks John out of the room and throws the key out of the window. When John enters the space, immediately shocked by the maniacal sight of his partner, he passes out.
The paradox of the story is how the “rest cure” fails to cure her anxiety and rather drives her mad. Despite being driven to insanity, the narrator’s mind lastly triumphed over the prescribed “rest remedy” at the end of the story by escaping into her creativity. If she had actually caught the “rest remedy,” and it had been successful, she would have allowed the treatment to defeat her intellectually and imaginatively. In the following quote, the narrator tells her husband how she has actually conquered him: “I’ve gone out at last, stated I, in spite of you and Jane.
And I’ve pulled off the majority of the paper, so you can’t put me back (Gilman 483).” She prospers in ripping the wallpaper from the walls versus her partner’s will, dominating her submissive role. Despite her lunacy, she defeats her other half, yet again, by triggering him to faint (Gilbert and Gubar 489). Fainting is an action most typically associated to women and weakness. As soon as he faints, the storyteller climbs over his body as she makes her way around the room. Her spouse becomes a surmountable obstacle unlike the insurmountable challenge he posed throughout the remainder of the story.
As she loses her grip with reality, the storyteller rebels in the best way possible. She has actually ripped, torn and bitten the wallpaper down to complimentary herself and the female in the paper. She has ended up being almost animalistic as she crawls around the room on all fours. Ultimately she has actually shown to her hubby that she is in fact, truly ill. Her insanity appears to be a sign of the defeat that she is experiencing. In beating the oppression and breaking free, she pays the ultimate price, her sanity.
Since the story ends here, the reader never knows if the insanity is short-lived much like the author’s own depression. The narrator is victorious over her oppression by lastly getting rid of the challenge that was her spouse and breaking without her former self. She is no longer the contented partner and mother but rather an animal climbing up over her other half as she continues to do as she wishes, circling around the room. Works Cited Delashmit, M., and C. Longcope. Gilman’s The Yellow Wallpaper. Explicator 50. 1 (1991 ): 32. Academic Browse Complete. Web. 3 Mar. 2013.
Evans, Robert, Anne Little, and Barbara Wiedemann. Short Fiction: A Vital Buddy. West Cornwall, CT: Locust Hill, 1997. 64-72. Print. Gilbert, Sandra M and Susan Gubar. “Imprisonmenat and Escape: The Psychology of Confinement.” Literature An Introduction to Fiction Poetry Drama and Writing. Ed. X. J. Kennedy and Dana Gioia. 12th ed. New York: Pearson, 2013. 488-489. Print. Gilman, Charlotte. “The Yellow Wallpaper”. Literature An Intro to Fiction Poetry Drama and Composing. Ed. X. J. Kennedy and Dana Gioia. 12th ed. New York: Pearson, 2013. 473-485. Print.