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Oppression Of Women In Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s The Yellow Wallpaper

788 words - 3 pages

For a long time, women were oppressed and controlled by men. Particularly in early 19th century, these thoughts and stereotypes bound women stronger than ever. "The Yellow Wallpaper" written by Charlotte Perkins, shows readers how men and women were treated differently during early 19th century by her characterization of the narrator and her husband. The “Yellow Wallpaper” is about one man who controls his wife and forces her to hide herself and makes her isolated from the world by giving her wrong protection and one woman who is absolutely forbidden to do anything and isolated from the world because of her “depression”. In the story, Gilman conveyed her view of men as authoritative, controlling figure that doesn’t appreciate women’s feelings or thought and women as powerless figure that were ignored and oppressed by men through the use of characterization of husband, wife (the narrator), and symbolism.
Gilman conveyed her view of men through the use of characterization of husband, John, who symbolizes authoritative, controlling figure that ignores women’s feeling and thought. In the story, John wants to help his wife her depression but at the same time, he wants to control and authorize his wife by using his position, doctor. The narrator states, “…I am absolutely forbidden to “work” until I am well again” (1). This shows how John is trying to block the way to the world and make her powerless by taking away her basic rights such as working and writing. Also, when his wife wanted to go and visit her cousin, John completely ignored her opinion and refused the request. “…tell him how I wish he would let me go and make a visit to Cousin Henry and Julia. But he said I wasn’t able to go, nor able to stand it after I got there” (5). This shows that John is ignoring her thoughts and opinions. This ignorance and authoritative demands of him made the narrator’s situation worse. John could see his wife but not could see trapped, struggling woman inside of her. John always said it’s all for her own good but what really inside of him was authoritative mind that wants to control his wife.
Gilman conveyed her view of women through the use of characterization of the narrator, who symbolizes powerless figure that were ignored and oppressed by men. The narrator used to be an...

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