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The Yellow Wallpaper

1308 words - 5 pages


The Yellow Wallpaper

     In the short story 'The Yellow Wallpaper'; by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, the narrator and her husband move to a colonial mansion for three months in order to help the narrator get better. She moves upstairs in this horrid room with yellow wallpaper. Throughout the story she studies the wallpaper because she isn't allowed out of the room that much because her husband, John, a physician, says that it is best that she stays inside. As she learns more about the wallpaper she realizes that she sees a woman inside it and she spends a lot of time plotting how to free the woman. She locks her room and tears off most of the wallpaper and frees the woman. At the end John comes into the room, sees what she has done and faints.
Everyone deals with their personal obstacles differently and 'The Yellow Wallpaper'; is a perfect example because there are many different obstacles throughout the story. The narrator and John both handle them differently and a result of which, is an essential change by both of them.

     First of all, John handles everything to an extent but he doesn't solve the problem at hand. He tends to run away from it. For example, when the narrator asks, 'why the house had stood so long untenanted,'; he just laughs at her and doesn't even investigate about it, which proves that he just let it go and does nothing about it. And that is what he does throughout the whole story. Also he 'scoffs openly at any talk.'; This means that he doesn't talk about his problems and he would prefer to keep things bottled up then to express how he is really feeling. He is also always 'going into town for more serious cases.'; This is another way in which John deals with his problems, he runs away from them. He also avoids the actual subject by calling his wife a cute name like, 'bless her little heart,'; and, 'my blessed little goose.'; These quotes just make it so he doesn't have to answer the question and then he has relinquished himself from the situation. Another thing that he does to handle obstacles is he lies. When the narrator says that she doesn't feel any better, and this happens often, then he just says, 'you are getting better, you are eating more and you have more color today.'; So john handles his obstacles in an inefficient and ineffective matter.

     The narrator however handles things in a much more precise manner. The number one thing that made her relaxed and that calmed her down was her journal. She would write about everything that happened not to read it later but so she was more relaxed and could think a little clearer with whatever she wrote not in her mind. The whole story is her journal and she writes mostly about the wallpaper and how her husband is always gone. This journal idea is essential because we know what she is thinking and that really helps understand the story and her character better. Also, in order for her to forget...

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