The Haunting Of Hill House Analysis

1288 Words6 Pages
Characterized by gloomy homes, unexplainable occurrences, and uncanny instances that surrounded women, the female gothic genre emerged from the gothic genre around the early eighteenth century. This budding genre provided an outlet for female authors and readers to express themselves in a time where they were dominated by a male hierarchy and by those women in society who were well-off with auspicious upbringings. In various novels, such as “The Yellow Wallpaper”, and The Haunting of Hill House, the poor, unfortunate women are portrayed as the weaker or more unstable of the sexes and of social structures. Those who see these women as weak and unable to function rationally, argue that they are mentally ill; however, in reality, they are impregnable…show more content…
The stories serve as an expression for female independence, especially those women of hapless life events. In the works, the authors use gothic tropes to show a representation of the suppression of the weaker of the female gender, especially when compared to men, and how the women are effected both mentally and socially. The female character is often the victim as well as the courageous heroine and is set in some type of confinement. The woman is also often oppressed by her husband or traumatized by family life and left on her own. In The Yellow Wallpaper, the female character is confined to a room, forced to bed rest and restricted from her work; in The Haunting of Hill House, the female character is confined to the mansion and overwhelmed with a sense of freedom after being tyrannized by her mother and sister; and in A Rose For Emily, the female character is confined to her home after her father, who had complete control over her, passed away. Women are also seen as if they have gone mad, since their lack of control of a situation departs from the conventional ways they “should” be acting. This occurs most notably in The Yellow Wallpaper. Just like basic gothic literature, the author in the female gothic often incorporates some sort of monster into the story. This monster is often times the woman herself. When she goes against the way she is supposed to act, submissive and passive, her monstrous side is…show more content…
Gilman’s unfortunate life that was full of poverty, illness, and death directly influenced her writing. A few years after her birth in 1860, her father left, leaving her older brother and mother in poverty. Her mother was often ill and unaffectionate, so her and her brother were left to take care of each other. Without a father figure and without a good mother, Gilman was left to basically raise herself. After she put herself through college, she met Charles Walter Stetson in 1884 and a year later after they had their first child, Katharine Beecher Stetson, Gilman suffered from a very serious bout of post-partum depression. She was very ill for various months but her claims of being emotionally unstable yet still mentally stable were dismissed as invalid, a common issue during this time in history. Her famous doctor, S. Weir Mitchell, recommended the rest cure to her, which consisted of laying in bed all day and only engaging in intellectual activity for no more than two hours per day. He told her to “live as domestic a life as far as possible” and to “never touch pen, brush, or pencil again.” Rather than help her, this method of convalescence only let to a complete breakdown (Gilman). She believed that the domestic environment and patriarchal dominance oppressed societal women. It is true that her idea of male aggressiveness and maternal roles should be altered

    More about The Haunting Of Hill House Analysis

      Open Document