The Setting For Insanity In Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper"

1092 words - 4 pages

Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper" illustrates that being excluded from the public and locked away in solitary confinement causes insanity. Gilman uses setting to convey this point throughout the story.The unnamed woman in this story is told that she is suffering from a nervous disorder. Her husband takes her to a colonial mansion far away from her normal environment. He believes that taking her to a different environment will cure her of her illness. When she arrives at the mansion she thinks it is a beautiful place but feels that there is something eerie about it. She states "there is something strange about the house- I can feel it."(538). This statement implies that inside she knows that this so called treatment will eventually drive her insane. One of the significant settings is the mansion's "beautiful shaded lane" (540), which runs to a little private wharf. In her mind, she envisions this as a path that leads her to long lost happiness. The word "shaded" leads one to believe that she is unclear if this long lost happiness is accessible.The woman is forced to stay in an old nursery room in spite of her wishes. She longs to be in a more lively room down stairs. This is a room she describes as "opened on the piazza and had roses all over the window, and such pretty old-fashioned chintz hangings" (538). She longs to be there but her husband "would not hear of it" (538). According an essay by Jeannine Lawall, "John knew that his wife was loosing her mind and so chose this safe room over the prettier (and possibly healthier) rooms downstairs." He believes the less excitement she has, the better her recovery will be. Lawall also points out that "this nursery is reminiscent of the attics to which insane people were often confined in the days before doctors realized that mental illnesses could be cured or controlled by proper treatment." There are bars on the on the windows and the bed is nailed to the floor. This fact provides an image of seclusion and loneliness experienced by the woman. According Liselle Sant, "One specific characteristic of the house that symbolizes not only her potential but also her trapped feeling is the window." The condition of being trapped within a small, closed in room will enhance her instability.The moment the woman moves into the mansion's nursery, she immediately despises the wallpaper. The woman describes the wallpaper as having "sprawling, flamboyant patterns committing every artistic sin"(539). After a while she starts to become obsessed and only writes of the yellow wallpaper. She tries to follow the pattern. It is almost as if she is trying to escape her own sadness. She states, "The whole thing goes horizontally, too, at least it seems so, and I exhaust myself in trying to distinguish the order of its going in that direction." She is wearing herself out, and making her condition worse by following and trying to figure out the pattern. While thinking she is searching for an end to the pattern,...

Find Another Essay On The Setting for Insanity in Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper"

How gender criticism is displayed in Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper".

1368 words - 5 pages (Gioia, Gwynn, 895). Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper" tells the story about a delusional woman that tumbles into insanity as a result of the reflection she sees in this wallpaper. One perception of the wallpaper is that she sees a reflection of herself within the walls, trapped, and desperately she tries to free herself. More importantly, the story is about attacking the roles of women in society. The narrator can generally represent

Analysys of Charlotte Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper."

987 words - 4 pages beseech you to reconsider your decision on not including Charlotte Gilman's story, "The Yellow Wallpaper," in the Atlantic Monthly. Although this story at first seems like tragic deterioration of a psychotically ill woman, once the reader understands the true underlying message, they become inspired by it's enlightening message of feminine movement. Thus, I strongly feel that you should consider publishing Gilman's story, for it's unparalleled feminist themes, as seen through the room itself, the woman behind the wallpaper, and John's untimely collapse, converge to create a truly inspiring story.

The Importance of Setting in The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

3200 words - 13 pages that there is nothing--and nowhere--to hide. Works Cited Bachelard, Gaston. The Poetics of Space. New York: Orion, 1964. Bak, John S. "Escaping the Jaundiced Eye: Foucauldian Panopticism in Charlotte Perkins Gilman's 'The Yellow Wallpaper.'" Studies in Short Fiction. 31, (1994): 39-46. Colomina, Beatriz. "The Split Wall: Domestic Voyeurism." Sexuality and Space. Ed. Beatriz Colomina. Princeton: Princeton Papers on Architecture, 1992

Charlotte Perkins Gilman's The Yellow Wallpaper. a commentary on the male oppression of women in a patriarchal society

1286 words - 5 pages Charlotte Perkins Gilman's The Yellow Wallpaper is a commentary on the male oppression of women in a patriarchal society. However, the story itself presents an interesting look at one woman's struggle to deal with both physical and mental confinement. This theme is particularly thought-provoking when read in today's context where individual freedom is one of our most cherished rights. This analysis will focus on two primary issues: 1) the many

First Person Narration in Charlotte Perkins Gilman's The Yellow Wallpaper and Edgar Allen Poe's the Black Cat

774 words - 3 pages First Person Narration in Charlotte Perkins Gilman's The Yellow Wallpaper and Edgar Allen Poe's the Black Cat In "The Yellow Wallpaper" By Charlotte Perkins Gilman and "The Black Cat" By Edgar Allen Poe, two short and sinister stories, 1st person narration is used by both authors to create atmospheric tension and unease. By using 1st person narration, a story told through the eyes of one person present in that story, the authors can get

Feminist Narratology in Charlotte Gilman's The Yellow Wallpaper

2811 words - 11 pages extra knowledge necessary for the reader to read 'The Yellow Wallpaper' was provided by Charlotte Perkin Gilman herself - albeit twenty two years after the story was published. In October 1913 she published an article called 'Why I wrote The Yellow Wallpaper'. This article gives an abbreviated description of her own experience of depression and treatment. She too had visited the Doctor mentioned in The Yellow Wallpaper - Weir Mitchell. She too

Comparing Charlotte Perkins Gilman's The Yellow Wallpaper; and Kate Chopin's The Story of an Hour

1079 words - 4 pages Comparing Charlotte Perkins Gilman's 'The Yellow Wallpaper' and Kate Chopin's 'The Story of an Hour' 'The Yellow Wallpaper';, by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, and 'The Story of an Hour';, by Kate Chopin, are alike in that both of the women in the stories were controlled by their husbands which caused them to feel an intense desire for freedom. Both stories were also written from a feminist point of view. However, the women in the stories had

Kate Chopin's The Story of an Hour and Charlotte Perkins Gilman's The Yellow Wallpaper

1746 words - 7 pages Kate Chopin wrote “The Story of an Hour” in 1894; it describes a young married women named Louise confronting years of suppression that vanish with her husband’s death leaving her with unimaginable freedom. A few years later in 1899, Charlotte Perkins Gilman wrote “The Yellow Wallpaper” which portrayed a married woman’s struggle against insanity. The similarities between the two would seem unapparent, other than the fact that both women in the

The Yellow Obsession Charlotte Perkin Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper"

774 words - 3 pages Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper" is a short story about the imprisonment of a woman and how she is driven insane by the wallpaper in her room. The woman writes this story after being diagnosed with hysteria after giving birth to her baby in the early 1900's. Her husband moves them to a colonial mansion where she can recover. The woman becomes obsessed with the yellow wallpaper and she begins to act deranged.The woman's husband

The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

1744 words - 7 pages of a woman's insanity. It tells how women were disregarded at times and treated like frail children at others. Ultimately, Jane realized that she held control over her own life. It was her responsibility to relieve her stress and tell her story. This is a story of seclusion and escape. "The Yellow Wallpaper," being highly autobiographical for Charlotte Perkins Gilman, was written shortly after her own nervous breakdown

The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

1406 words - 6 pages , setting, and character to help the reader better understand this short piece. Works Cited Barnet, Sylvan, William Burto, and William E. Cain. "The Yellow Wallpaper." Literature for Composition: An Introduction to Literature. 10th ed. New Jersey: Pearson, 2014. 746-56. Beekman, Mary. "Charlotte Perkins Gilman." Charlotte Perkins Gilman. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Feb. 2014.

Similar Essays

Charlotte Perkins Gilman's The Yellow Wallpaper

1730 words - 7 pages For decades now critics have viewed, Gilman’s novella, “The Yellow Wallpaper” mainly in a feminist way, focusing on the way women acted and how they were treated in the 1800s. Although there are good points to the feminist criticism, one could go more in depth by psychoanalyzing it because feminism fit more into the 1800s when women did not have the roles they have today, by looking at the psychoanalytic effect the restrictions had on her, and

Insanity In The Yellow Wallpaper By Charlotte Perkins Gilman

1742 words - 7 pages Insanity in The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman In Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper," a nervous wife, an overprotective husband, and a large, dank room covered in musty wallpaper all play important parts in driving the wife insane. The husband's smothering attention, combined with the isolated environment, incites the nervous nature of the wife, causing her to plunge into insanity to the point she sees

Feminist Perspective On Charlotte Perkins Gilman's The Yellow Wallpaper

1421 words - 6 pages - %20Greene%2CLeed.htm>. Gilman, Charlotte Perkins. "Why I Wrote The Yellow Wallpaper." Editorial. The Forerunner Nov. 1909. Web. . Moore, Dolores. "Feminism in The Yellow Wallpaper." Helium - Where Knowledge Rules. 16 Aug. 2008. Web. . Johnson, Greg. "Gilman's Gothic Allegory: Rage and Redemption in 'The Yellow Wallpaper."' Studies in Short Fiction 26 (1989): 521-530.

Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper" And Franz Kafka's "Metamorphosis".

1482 words - 6 pages Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper" and Franz Kafka's "Metamorphosis" contain many similarities. They both have the common theme of the deterioration of the main character's life and mind, as well as the theme of the ostracism of outcasts in society. They also both deal with the main characters gaining a freedom through the demise of their previous lives. The woman in "The Yellow Wallpaper" is slowly deteriorating in mental state