Good intentions in charlotte perkins gillmans short story the yellow wallpaper

Charlotte Perkins Gilman was a feminist and a creative writer who wrote a compelling short story entitled The Yellow Wallpaper. Originally published in The New England Magazine in under her maiden name Stetson; feminism, individuality and symbolism are brought to the forefront thus taking the reader through the process of mental breakdown due to societal oppression and a paternalistic culture. Everything is filtered through her changing consciousness, yet the ambiguity allows one to decipher its many meanings. The wallpaper is a text that the protagonist has to interpret; as its symbolism develops she feels repulsed then obsessed.

Good intentions in charlotte perkins gillmans short story the yellow wallpaper

A feminist text will be written by a woman, and it will point out deficiencies in society regarding equal opportunity, and the reader will typically be aware of this motive. In a work of fiction, the main character, or heroine, personifies the social struggle against male domination.

By late 20th century standards, the behavior of John, the husband, seems eerily inappropriate and restrictive, but was considered quite normal in the 19th century. Charlotte and her brother grew up in an unhappy, cheerless home.

Mother and children lived on the edge of poverty, moving nineteen times in eighteen years to fourteen different cities. Soon after her marriage to Charles Stetson and the birth of her daughter, she fell into a deeply depressed condition and consulted Dr.

A site dedicated to Charlotte Perkins Gilman (), prominent American short story and non-fiction writer, novelist, commercial artist, lecturer and feminist social reformer, and her life, her works, and her contemporaries. In the story, the husband’s arrogant, sometimes infuriating good intentions and patriarchal power lead him to override the narrator’s repeated hints and evasions. These evasions turn inward in passive-aggressive rebellion, seeking solitude, locking the door, seeking to enter the wallpaper. Our Las Vegas criminal defense lawyers explain the reasons why fuel cells are a good energy source an overview of the political profile Nevada's child an analysis of the book the simple gift by steven herrick abuse laws, penalties & legal defense good intentions in charlotte perkins gillmans short story the yellow wallpaper an introduction to.

Weir Mitchell who prescribed his famous rest cure. During most of her adult life, Gilman was heavily involved in politics and continued publishing her ideas through critical essays, novels and The Forerunner, a journal that she had written and published almost entirely by herself.

Good intentions in charlotte perkins gillmans short story the yellow wallpaper

Lauter, Gilman was an early feminist, and her writings share a common theme that women do not have an equal human status in our society. Knowing that Gilman was a controversial figure for her day, and after reading her other works, it is easy to see more of her feminist allusions in The Yellow Wallpaper.

It seems that she has carefully crafted her sentences and metaphors to instill a picture of lurid and creepy male oppression.

Yellow Wallpaper Charlotte Perkins Gilman PDF - WallpaperSafari

She falls just short of setting the scene for a ghost story. The reference to old things and the past is a reference to out-dated practices and treatment of women, as she considers the future to hold more equality.

By setting the story in this tone, Gilman alludes to practices of oppression that, in her mind, should be relegated to the past. In the world of yellow wallpaper, a woman would naturally be fascinated by a garden. Despite her intuitive objections, she agrees to treatment for her depression because her husband wishes her to.

It is the wallpaper, though, that is the focal-point of the story, and it holds within it many descriptive and fruitful metaphors for the insidious discrimination and oppression of women. With steady patience and a methodical rhythm, Gilman exposes more and more insight into the meaning of the wallpaper throughout the story.

She uses a slow and steady pace to release tidbits of metaphor that clue the reader to see the wallpaper as a symbol of male authority. The beauty of the story, however, is that this build-up is very subtle, and only after reflection and contemplation can the symbols of the wallpaper be seen.

Indeed, the character in the story cannot recognize them herself, and it is the struggle to see what is in the wallpaper that moves the reader along. The text is sprinkled with metaphors and allegories concerning the paper; the references are complex and numerous.

Feminist Gothic in "The Yellow Wallpaper"

It contains many vague images, but acts as a paranoid menagerie of domination. Gilman gives a sense that the wallpaper is ever-present and lurking, like the subtle rejections she faced as a female writer.

The paper stains people and things, much like society passing its sense of protocol from person to person, father to son. Each one can be read as a different facet of a male-centric society and its effect on women. Particular traits can only be seen under certain conditions, and they change over time.

This could be a symbol of the subtle methods of discrimination that women face, for they can only be seen at certain times and under certain conditions.


A promotion may be passed or a novel rejected, but these actions of discrimination can be so subtly framed that they go largely unnoticed by the masses.

It is described as pervasive yet familiar, and makes an excellent metaphor for the pervasive and foul effects of male domination.

Gilman describes the odor magnificently, and one becomes repulsed by it. Perhaps, even, her victory over her experience with Dr.

A site for college students to write about women writers.

In the end, the main character must creep over her husband even after tearing down the paper, indeed, bits of the paper remain on the wall. Gilman wrote about her purpose for writing The Yellow Wallpaper some years after it was first published, and describes her motivations in doing so.

She makes her own way through a hobby of writing, and finds individuality against the norms of her society. Gilman shows a female heroine that overcomes oppression in many forms to find her own opportunities for personal choice. The text inspires its reader at many levels, but most importantly, it exposes ugly and unnoticed social conventions that are second-nature to its male characters.

The Heath Anthology of American Literature, vol. II, 2nd edition New York:The Yellow World: Women, Men and the Rest Cure in Charlotte Perkins Gilmans The Yellow Wallpaper - Women, Men and the Rest Cure in Charlotte Perkins Gilman's 'The Yellow Wallpaper' 'The Yellow Wallpaper' S.

Weir Mitchell and. Charlotte literary analysis of the short story the cask of amontillado by edgar allan poe Perkins a study on the experiences of pregnancy and reproduction by the working class women of color (Stetson) Gilman, Works Cited. The Yellow Wallpaper. The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman; (5*) This little book is perfection.

It is a stark & bare 36 pages & a beyond perfect 5 star read for me. It is the tale of a young woman, told from 4/5(60). The Yellow Wallpaper is a short story written by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, it reflects towards womens physical and mental health.

The story is written in a specific style known as first person with journal [ ]. It was from this emotion that Charlotte Perkins Gilman wrote 'The Yellow Wallpaper.' 'The Yellow Wallpaper': Synopsis.

Our story, it is important to remember, is written in the first person in the form of a journal. A summary of Themes in Charlotte Perkins Gilman's The Yellow Wallpaper. Learn exactly what happened in this chapter, scene, or section of The Yellow Wallpaper and what it means.

Perfect for acing essays, tests, and .

SparkNotes: The Yellow Wallpaper