Insanity In The Yellow Wallpaper

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The short story “The Yellow Wallpaper” by Charlotte Perkins Gilman describes the way of life in the past and how women were treated unfairly. Not knowing much about contemporary medicine and ways of helping people with depression, John (her husband) locks her in a room to deal with her nervous depression. She suffers from postpartum depression, and throughout the time of her being isolated for the three months the room makes her slowly descend into insanity from “seeing people behind the wall” to having to “creep over[john] every time” (216). The protagonist believes she is going to a “romantic felicity” (204) for the summer to find out that something is very “queer” (205) about the situation. Arriving at the house she was in awe, from the…show more content…
without her recognition of the truth that it is damaging her emotions, wishing she could “get well faster” (207). The discouraged woman, not knowing “any advice or companionship about” (207) her, continues to crawl and follow the wall paper (the ways of society) finding her way out of insanity. Afraid of the peculiar odor that is dwelling around her, the woman sees “Strangled heads” (215) and is getting “dizzy” from following the ways of the other women, round and round-round and round, running away from the bars of the hideous wallpaper. The wallpaper is acting like a mirror, watching the “woman crawling around fast… shaking the bars in the dark… [very] still in the light” (213). Afraid of moving in light, just in case someone sees her gender which they cannot show. “Most women do not creep by daylight” (214) she would be the only women ever seen creep in daylight, in the grape arbor, alone the road, but if someone comes she hides. This foreshadows the separation of the wife’s sane mind to her insane thoughts, with her seeing the woman outside which is just her reflection in the window. She believes she is getting better in the room. But readers know that this isn’t the case, when john faints from the site of his own wife falling into
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